In his speech commemorating the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday on the Edmund Pettis Bridge in Selma, Alabama, President Obama took aim at state voter ID laws:
And with effort, we can protect the foundation stone of our democracy for which so many marched across this bridge – and that is the right to vote. Right now, in 2015, fifty years after Selma, there are laws across this country designed to make it harder for people to vote. As we speak, more of such laws are being proposed. Meanwhile, the Voting Rights Act, the culmination of so much blood and sweat and tears, the product of so much sacrifice in the face of wanton violence, stands weakened, its future subject to partisan rancor.
Obama went on to characterize voter ID statutes as “voter suppression laws”.
I defy President Obama to name me one person who has been denied the right to vote as a result of the passage of any state voter ID law. The states that require a photo ID have gone to great lengths to ensure its citizens receive their IDs free of charge.
For President Obama to compare contemporary voter ID laws to the laws of the Jim Crow South trivializes the what those who crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge 50 years ago achieved and is yet another example of the President’s dishonesty, disingenuousness and demagoguery.