The Instigator
Preston
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Mago0o
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

The US Congress should pass a bill that limits discrimination in us voting polls.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/29/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 486 times Debate No: 39604
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (0)

 

Preston

Pro

There should never be a situation in which Congress avoids harming discrimination, saying we shouldn't pass a bill working for equality is the equivalent of saying people rights do not need protecting. One way this can be see is in Texas, as soon as the federal government loosened their grip on how voting poll standards should be addressed Texas began imposing Voter id laws. these laws allowed polls to turn down any voter even if the id was good, all they needed was a shred of doubt. The federal government has stated that they will take action and its a discriminatory process.

SRC:
-http://www.nytimes.com...
Mago0o

Con

I'll take the bait. I don't see this as discrimination and the Federal government should leave it up to the state. Your source is from over a year ago so I'd be interested to see how it panned out.

In the article from the NY Times, it states that voters have to show up with ONE of five forms of acceptable ID. I don't see how this can be discriminatory. If you can't prove who you are when given 5 chances, odds may be that you are trying to be deceitful. IF, you don't have one of the five acceptable forms of ID, you have another shot by getting a voter ID certificate. In this case you will have to provide your birth certificate. ONLY if you don't have said birth certificate would you have to obtain one from the records office (at a cost of $22 "in some cases"). Now, you have been given 6 chances to prove you are who you say you are and that you are eligible to vote in a certain election. The people calling discrimination site that this would be difficult for the poor and indignant. If the state waived the $22 fee for a new birth certificate, would this still be discriminatory?

The article also mentions that some people may have to go up to 250 miles to obtain their voter ID certificate. I would argue that if they cared enough for their vote, they would gladly make the trek. That said, yes, that may be difficult for the destitute. What if the state had a "travelling Department of Public Safety Office" that came to your county? Would it still be discriminatory? What if the state made it mandatory to give time off to those that need to obtain such a voter ID?

These don't seem like Federal issues to me. Also, I challenge your claim that, " these laws allowed polls to turn down any voter even if the id was good, all they needed was a shred of doubt". I did not see that in your source article and seems to be conjecture.

Now, let's discuss the rights of the majority of the population. I am a registered voter and vote in every election. I think it's important and it's my right. If it could be proven that an election was swayed by voter fraud and the state could have done something about it, I would be furious. Imagine the outrage that would ensue if the state did try to do something about it but the Federal government put a stop to it.
Debate Round No. 1
Preston

Pro

I'm so glad you jumped on this, thanks.

Ok just to start, I will address states taking charge:

States are likely/will to abuse the fact that they can pass voting laws. Texas is a clear example, they have tried several time, the most recent this past summer, to pass laws that the federal government deemed discriminatory, whether it be towards women of races (http://www.theguardian.com...), the voter id laws are a clear example of this. Its ridiculous to request 5 ids, and if you are one of those who do not vote normally you now must come up with 5 ids that are recognized by state, in many large cities people don't drive, they walk. They don't invest in a licence, and if you are a poorer family this means your giving up a days wages to go to a dmv, wait in line, and lose income. this income that many Americans live on from paycheck to paycheck.

Secondly I would like to quote and then refute you:
"The article also mentions that some people may have to go up to 250 miles to obtain their voter ID certificate. I would argue that if they cared enough for their vote, they would gladly make the trek. That said, yes, that may be difficult for the destitute. What if the state had a "travelling Department of Public Safety Office" that came to your county? Would it still be discriminatory? What if the state made it mandatory to give time off to those that need to obtain such a voter ID?"

Your saying, that if I am a 25 year old woman who works to the bone so I can feed my 3 kids because my husband left me, that I should have to give up a days wages and spend money driving 250 miles to get ID? Thats outrageous and shows how privileged you are. you have the importunity to do what the majority of Americans must suffer to get.

I would like to add the fact that a federal government can co-exist with a state. Federal government is not being forced to spear head it alone in the topic, they merely must pass a bill regulating discriminatory action.
Mago0o

Con

Nobody is asking anyone to produce 5 IDs. All a person has to do is produce 1 of 5; whether it be a drivers license, passport, non-driver ID, military ID or handgun license is irrelevant. All they need is ONE of the above. In the event a person cannot come up with 1 acceptable form of ID, they then have the option of obtaining an election ID certificate which does require the applicant to have a birth certificate. With millions of illegal aliens in the country and many more coming in everyday, the time has come for people to prove that they have voting rights. I'm sorry, but if you cannot prove that you have a legal right to vote, then you don't vote. Plain and simple.

Now, about the 25 year old mother of 3 that you reference. Is she working under the table and not paying taxes? This is the only scenario I can think of where she wouldn't have had to provide ID to an employer for tax purposes. Did she receive medical care when she had her 3 children? How about her marriage and subsequent divorce? She never had to prove who she was until voting day? And to your claim that "the majority of Americans must suffer to get [an ID]" is preposterous! Show me some data to back that one up. I just looked it up and I am surprised to find that 11% of Americans don't have proper ID. That's a shame but I'm sure many have had ample time to procure appropriate identification and failed to do so. We no longer live in an age where we know the people in our communities. A signature and an electric bill won't cut it as proof of voting rights any longer. With voting comes responsibility. Let's be responsible and make sure the people electing our nations leaders are supposed to be in the voting booth.

I will agree with you that throwing this law into action on short notice is wrong. The appropriate thing to do would be to give people enough time -a year or 2- before enacting the law. During this time funds could also be set aside for people that cannot afford the cost involved.
Debate Round No. 2
Preston

Pro

Ok, again the fact your attacking this woman shows how arrogant you are. You attack her personal problems instead of addressing her right to vote. So since you didn't refute the opportunity cost i'm displaying I win this point. you go on to say only 11% of Americans don't have voter ID? According to the Washington Times "only 66 percent of women have access to a valid document."that means 33% of women dont have valid ID. They continue "The law may also place a voting barrier for the transgender community, where as many as 41 percent of individuals have not updated their driver"s license, 74 percent do not possess an updated passport, and 27 percent have no identity documents reflecting their current gender..." your 11% is BS.

I would like reference a quote by Charles Bukowski "The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship is that in a democracy you vote first and take orders later; in a dictatorship you don't have to waste your time voting." Fortunately for us we live in a democracy and every vote counts, if this law stops even 1 voter from voting we are discriminating against them, and that's not right. a government is meant to protect the essential rights of their people and voting is one of them.

Thank you for the rounds :)
Mago0o

Con

You're welcome to criticize me all you want, call me arrogant, call my figures BS. It's a classic tactic used by the losing party- When all else fails, attack the debater instead of the topic.

1- my 11% is not BS. I took the numbers from the ACLU, so unless you think they are also BS'ing, you can accept the figures for what they are- https://www.aclu.org....

2- I am not attacking the personal problems the woman in your scenario has. What I am suggesting is that unless she is a criminal (for not paying taxes which would make her ineligible to vote anyway), then she should be able to produce something that proves she is who she claims. When I got married I needed photo ID. Every job I've had has required photo ID. She has every right to vote but instead of asking the citizens at large to get her to the voting booth, I'm suggesting that she take some responsibility for herself. Please don't mistake my desire for responsible voters/Americans as arrogance. I would like my children to grow up in a US better than the one in the movie Idioracy - http://www.imdb.com...

3- Regarding the opportunity, I believe I made my argument for that and you missed/ignored it. I suggested states provide the ID free of cost as well as set up funds for people that may need assistance. I also suggested mandatory time off to get said ID.

4- You cite a quote about democracy. Did I miss the part where the people of Texas didn't vote (free of ID) for the people in office? You suggest the Federal Government take over and tell the states how to run things. That is the opposite of a democracy. Do you know why Republicans and Tea Party-ers call Obama a fascist? It's because of his long reach into states rights and his take over of a free, open market.

5- I have offered suggestions in my previous rounds as to how to make the new laws easier and fair for people that this would have an effect on. You have ignored such suggestions and have offered nothing in return.
Debate Round No. 3
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