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Thursday, May 19, 2011

 11:01 AM 

Senate passes voter ID requirement, bill heads to Walker

The bill requiring voters to show a photo ID in order to vote and outlaws straight party voting is on its way to Gov. Scott Walker.

The Senate passed the bill today on a 19-5 vote. The Republican majority limited debate today to one hour over the objection of Dems. The body debated amendments to the bill for more than nine hours on Tuesday and Wednesday.

"This bill has received a great deal of debate, not only in this body but around the state," Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said, noting that it has been subject to public hearings and has already been passed by legislative committees and the Assembly.

"If I were the Republicans I would put a 30-second limit on debate because I wouldn't want to talk about this either," Sen. Jon Erpenbach, D-Waunakee, said.

Democrats railed against the bill. Sen. Spencer Coggs, D-Milwaukee, said the requirement will have a "chilling effect" on voters,

"This bill kills the spirit, kills the will and kills the resolve of an electorate that only wants to exercise its constitutional right to vote," Coggs said.

Sen. Bob Jauch, D-Poplar, said today would be remembers "as they day democracy died."

But Sen. Frank Lasee, R-DePere, implied that Dems oppose the bill because they benefit from voter fraud.

"Who benefits from the abuse? I think those are good questions to ask," he said. "One fraudulent vote cancels out a single legal vote. The other side doesn't seem to care about that at all."


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