No ID Required

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Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - 3:09pm

Pennsylvania judge rules that controversial new voter ID law won't be enforced during this election.

Pennsylvania voters rushing to comply with that new law requiring photo IDs are feeling some relief.

A commonwealth court judge is preventing the law from taking effect until next year.

During this election election workers will be allowed to ask for the IDs, but voters without them won't be penalized.

Not only has the law sparked protests and been tied up in court for months, attempts at implementation have have been plagued with confusion and long lines for voters.

"It's too close to the election to get IDs in hands of the 760,000 people who need them," says Judith Browne Dianas, a voter rights advocate with The Advancement Project.

Civil rights advocates consider the decision a small victory.

They've been challenging similar ID requirements recently passed in several states.

Some, in states like Virginia, Indiana and Georgia, have been upheld.

Some elections experts and lawmakers, largely Republican, say the laws prevent voter fraud.

"These laws are perfectly reasonable and are common sense reform," says the Heritage Foundation's Hans Von Spakovsky.

Democrats call them Republican attempts to tilt the election.

The recent surge in ID requirements is just one area of new restrictions also affecting voter registration and early voting.

In the last year, at least 17 states have passed laws and executive actions that could impact this election.

"Voters are going to have to educate themselves," Browne Dianis says.

With Election Day just about a month away, time is running out to do so.

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