Court’s Voter ID Decision Wins Blake’s Approval

SCRANTON, Jan. 17, 2014 – State Sen. John Blake today issued the following statement in reaction to Commonwealth Court Judge John McGinley’s decision to strike down Pennsylvania’s law requiring voters to show proper identification before casting ballots:

“This ruling is a vindication of the position I and my Senate Democratic colleagues have held from the outset; that this was ill-advised public policy aimed at suppressing voting rights.

“We knew this law failed constitutional muster and needed to be eliminated. I am grateful that Judge McGinley agreed with the petitioners’ argument that ‘the right to vote is … irreplaceable’ and ‘necessitat[es] its protection before any deprivation occurs.’

“Voter deprivation and diminished democracy would be the result if this bad voter ID law was allowed to continue. I applaud the decision and hope the Corbett administration cedes its vision of a controlled electorate.

“Pennsylvania is a democracy and part of the greatest Democratic experiment on earth. Any law like voter ID that suppresses the vote and disenfranchises thousands of people who have always voted just by signing their name to the registry on Election Day is the antithesis of what our founding fathers intended and wanted.

“I understand Judge McGinley’s decision is appealable to the state Supreme Court, but it would be folly and a continued waste of precious tax dollars if that petition goes to the next level.

“We have to find ways to cover a more than $1 billion deficit for the new fiscal year. Spending more money on top of the millions already spent by the administration to defend this unconstitutional endeavor would be catastrophic.”