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Idaho lawsuit seeks to overturn law prohibiting campus cards for voter ID

Andrew Hudson   ||   Mar 23, 2023  ||   ,

Student ID cards have occupied a gray area when it comes to voter identification, with some states accepting the campus card at the the polls and others not. The latest to grapple with the challenge is the state of Idaho where a new lawsuit has been filed against a recent law that prohibits the use of student ID cards as an acceptable form of identification at polling places.

According to local Fox affiliate WFIN, the lawsuit has been filed by the Idaho chapter of March for Our Lives -- a student-led gun control organization -- and a 17-year-old student. The lawsuit seeks to have the law, HB 124, thrown out on constitutional grounds, alleging that HB 124 violates the 26th Amendment because it was "motivated by a discriminatory purpose."

Idaho Governor, Brad Little, signed HB 124 into law earlier this month. The legislation amends Idaho’s voter ID law by removing student ID cards from the list of personal identification that voters are required to show at the polls before casting a ballot.

Acceptable forms of voter identification in Idaho include an Idaho driver’s license, a passport or state-issued ID card with a photograph, a tribal identification card, or a concealed carry firearm license.

Legal representation for the plaintiffs argue that high school and college students have been able to use their student identification card to verify identity at polling places for over a decade without any recorded issues.

Bill co-sponsor, state Sen. Scott Herndon, said that only 104 people used a student ID to vote in the November 2022 election. State records indicate that nearly 600,000 Idaho residents voted in that election.

Herndon also argued that the standard to obtain a student ID card is less stringent than for other forms of identification.

"The reason that we, again, want to get rid of the student ID is because we cannot have as much assurance through that method of identification that the voter standing at the poll to vote is who they say they are," said Herndon.

Another proponent of HB 124 voiced concerns over students from neighboring states voting by mail in their states and then voting again in Idaho in person with a student ID card.

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