Pennsylvania voter ID ruling could put Keystone State in play
August 15, 2012, 1:48 PM
A judge’s decision Wednesday not to block a voter ID law in Pennsylvania could make the Keystone state — which tends to slightly lean to Democratic Party candidates — a possible key pick-up for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. See the ruling.
Obama at the moment has a 7-point lead in polls of the state, according to the RealClearPolitics average.
A study by the state estimates that about 9% of 8.2 million registered voters do not have a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation issued license. Some of that 9% of course hold other valid ID, like a passport, and Pennsylvania already has taken steps to make it easier for those with lapsed driver’s licenses to get new ID.
The impact of some of that 9% not being able to vote is what’s in the air. Famously, the head of Pennsylvania’s state House Republicans, Mike Turzai, said in June: “Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.”
Turzai was more restrained Wednesday. “The elections in the Commonwealth will be on a more level playing field thanks to voter ID and other recent election reforms,” he said in a statement.
The law still could get blocked. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court — which currently consists of three Democrats and three Republicans — almost certainly will hear the case; a majority would be needed to overturn the ruling. Federal lawsuits also are possible.