The Instigator
deusdiligitme
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
SolonKR
Con (against)
Winning
12 Points

Voter ID's

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
SolonKR
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/23/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,172 times Debate No: 59458
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (4)

 

deusdiligitme

Pro

The founding fathers of the United States established a form of government that allowed people to choose their representatives through voting. However Illegals voting has become a serious problem. Fortunately It is a fixable problem. We need to establish voter identification (voter ID's).

In California, Non-citizens testified that they had voted!
Hans A. von Spakovsky who was former member of the Federal Election Commission Stated in his article "The threat of non-citizen voting" in July 2008
"The evidence is indisputable that aliens, both legal and illegal, are registering and voting in federal, state, and local elections. Following a mayor's race in Compton, California, for example, aliens testified under oath in court that they voted in the election.[8] In that case, a candidate who was elected to the city council was permanently disqualified from holding public office in California for soliciting non-citizens to register and vote.[9] The fact that non-citizens registered and voted in the election would never have been discovered except for the fact that it was a very close election and the incumbent mayor, who lost by less than 300 votes, contested it.[10]"
(http://www.heritage.org...)

I have personally worked on 2 different political campaigns doing phone banking and I have had people tell me multiple times that they have gone and voted 4 times that day or that they had even had someone go and vote for them! Voter ID's will help to stop this problem.
It is to ensure the integrity of the US election system that we need to put voter ID's' in place. So in to do this I present the following plan: Government issued photo Identification cards will be required to register to vote, as well as vote in person at the polls.

ID's will ensure integrity in our electoral system while reducing fraud. Hans A. von Spakovsky said:
"Requiring voters to authenticate their identity at the polling place is necessary to protect the integrity of elections and access to the voting process. Every illegal vote steals or dilutes the vote of a legitimate voter. Opponents of voter ID claim that it can only prevent impersonation fraud at the polls, which rarely happens. That assertion is incorrect. Voter ID can prevent and deter:
-Impersonation fraud at the polls;
-Voting under fictitious voter registrations;
-Double voting by individuals registered in more than one state or locality; and
-Voting by illegal aliens, or even legal aliens who are still not entitled to vote since state and federal elections are restricted to U.S. citizens."
(http://www.heritage.org...)

Now wether you agree with Hillary Clinton's politics or not I believe she summed it up best when she said, "Voting is the most precious right of every citizen, and we have a moral obligation to ensure the integrity of our voting process". That is why I would strongly encourage a vote for pro. To protect every citizens rights and privileges.
SolonKR

Con

Voter fraud, according to those who argue in favor of Voter IDs, is a major issue with many cases documented. However, this is misconstruing the issue. Voter fraud does indeed happen; however, voter ID would do little to stop it. An exhaustive study that compiled reports of voter fraud found that out of all the elections in America since 2000, there were 10 cases reported of in-person voter fraud, which only Voter ID could prevent (1). The overwhelming plurality of fraud actually involves absentee ballots, which made up 24.2% of cases. Ensuring the integrity of elections is important; however, voter ID is one of the least efficient ways to do this.

With regards to the California race, the situation was resolved as the fraud was discovered, suggesting that our government is equipped to handle such cases of fraud without needing IDs.

I contest that personal experiences should not be considered in these arguments; they cannot be verified.

With regards to the assertion that Voter ID can prevent and deter multiple types of fraud at the polls, Pro is correct. However, all of those types of fraud that Pro mentions are examples of in-person fraud, which is the exact category in which so few cases of fraud occur (2).

Notwithstanding any arguments about minority discouragement, Voter ID law is simply unnecessary. The cases that exist that are preventable by Voter ID are few in number, and the controversy over Voter ID detracts from the real issue of absentee fraud.

Sources:
1. http://votingrights.news21.com...
2. http://www.brennancenter.org...
Debate Round No. 1
deusdiligitme

Pro

Bill Clinton, George Bush, and Ronald Reagan are in a boat in the Potomac, when suddenly the boat develops a leak. They have only one life preserver jacket.
Bill says: "Let's do the Democratic thing. Take a vote to see who gets the life preserver." They each write a name on a piece of paper and stuff it in a coffee can. Bush and Reagan get one vote each; Clinton gets six.

Obviously in this joke there was some voter fraud happening (regardless of whether your for or against Clinton), but it could have been prevented with just a little supervision which is what ID's will be providing. Pro stands for one person, one vote. But how can we keep this idea if we will do nothing to protect it?

My opponents only argument in round 1 is that in person voter fraud is rare. My response to this is that even though it may be rare voter ID's can help to deter and prevent these rare occurrences of voter fraud thus providing voters with more assurance in their political system. Since my opponent has not directly argued at this point that there is any negative effects of voter ID then there is not reason to not add an extra safeguard to our voting system. Any positive impact, change or deterioration of fraudulent votes is a reason to vote pro.
I'd like to illustrate my point with a quote:
"Their other claim is that voter fraud is so exceedingly rare, so unlikely, such an impossibility that there's no need for any voter identification. According to the Democrats, we can afford to assume that everyone will be honest on Election Day. So, there's no need to take any basic precautions or take any steps to prevent fraud because it just doesn't happen.
Well, to the contrary, voter fraud happens all the time and it does sometimes occur on a level large enough to impact close elections. Furthermore, it undoubtedly happens much more than we realize."
(http://townhall.com...)

In regard to mail in voting, ID's will be required to register for absentee or any other form of mail in ballot. People may also be required to submit their ID's or a photo copy of their ID when they mail in their vote as well.
In regard to California, voter fraud is generally only detected after the fact, if at all and investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly. It"s far better to prevent fraudulent voting than to track it down after the votes have already been counted.

My next point is that people support voter ID's. In a Fox poll 70% of people said they supported voter ID's. Only 27% of people say that it is unnecessary (http://www.foxnews.com...;). As a country created by the people and for the people there is no reason not to follow the will of the majority in this case. If the vast majority of the population is in favor of something and it doesn't harm anyone else, why not implement the policy?

At the end of the day however what will we be gaining by requiring voter ID's? Well, requiring a state-issued photo ID enables the use of common technology to further improve the integrity and efficiency of our election system. A simple computer terminal and a card reader could replace old-fashioned, wasteful and error-prone paper voter registrations and roster books when coupled with an ID requirement. Long lines could be eliminated, voter check-in would be faster, data more accurate and less money would be spent on inefficient, out-dated data entry practices.

It is for all of these reasons that I would encourage a vote for pro.
SolonKR

Con

Pro's hypothetical example at the beginning of the argument is just that: hypothetical. There is no election in the United States in which 3 people will be voting, each for themselves.

Pro claims that nothing is being done to protect the integrity of elections. This is untrue. One set of sweeping reforms was passed in 2002, the Help America Vote Act [1]. It was implemented in the aftermath of the disastrous election of 2000, and contains many provisions for deterring voter fraud.

I will now explain why voter ID laws should not be implemented.

Exhibit A: The cost.
America is in a large amount of debt. Voter IDs, to remain constitutional, must remain free of charge. As well, office hours must be expanded, the states must pay the cost of obtaining supporting documents required for getting an ID, the state must educate the voters on changes to laws through lots of advertising, and the state must administer extra training to officials. [2] According to the source cited, it could cost a state millions of dollars to implement such a law. This would place a burden on states, many of which already face a budget deficit [3].

Exhibit B: The discrimination.
While often dismissed, studies have shown that there is indeed a correlation between discrimination and support of voter ID laws. [4] There is a disparity between registered Hispanic voters and registered white voters in Texas, for example, that far outstrips any illegal immigration [5].

Pro stated, "even though it may be rare voter ID's can help to deter and prevent these rare occurrences of voter fraud". This is an explicit acknowledgement that voter fraud does not pose a serious threat in the United States any longer. Voter IDs are discriminatory and costly, and provide comparatively little stoppage to voter fraud, as I demonstrated in round 1.

Pro says that investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly, yet he provides no source, while I have clearly shown the costs that voter ID's would incur.

Also, the support of the American people does not make a law right or wrong. William Penn and Saint Augustine both stated versions of the same quote: "Right is right even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it." [6] [7]. While purported to cease causing fraud, voter ID laws would do more harm than good, as I have demonstrated, and as such should not be implemented.

Sources:
1. http://www.eac.gov...
2. http://www.brennancenter.org...
3. http://kff.org...
4. http://www.washingtonpost.com...
5. http://www.theatlantic.com...
6. http://www.goodreads.com...
7. http://www.ushistory.org...
Debate Round No. 2
deusdiligitme

Pro

While the Help America Vote Act may have passed many reforms to deter voter fraud, fraud is still happening! Id's can help prevent it. I don't claim to get rid of all fraud. What I want to do is help provide people with more integrity in our election system and help to stop fraud, which I can do with id"s.

Cost:
My opponent while stating that there would be costs didn't quantify his costs argument. Meaning he just threw the argument out without impacting it or letting us know how much these costs will be. If we have no idea what the costs are how are we supposed to weigh it? And whatever they are, they're a mere drop in the bucket compared to government spending. The government can easily afford to issue IDs and besides the citizens are entitled to them.

Discrimination:
Voter id's will not discriminate because if the government is giving them out then they will only be given to people who are registered. We don't complain about registration disenfranchising people so there is no reason that id's given to registered voters should discriminate against any one. Besides we are discussing id's here and in order for my opponents argument to stand it must be registration that disenfranchises people which is off the topic of id's.

My opponent stated that id's would do more harm than good however he only provided one argument about id's harm and that is of discrimination (which I have responded to above). I have provided over 5 instances of where id's would be good and the benefits we would gain by having them many of which he has not responded to.

Con said, "Pro says that investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly, yet he provides no source". Well here's my source http://www.protectmyvote.com....

I would also like to remind Con that even if something is thought to be rare it can still be dangerous, bad or wrong. I'll illustrate this by an example. Hypothetically speaking only 1 in 1000 people get in a crash because they don"t have their seat belt on. Should we do nothing to protect that person because their crash instance was "rare"? No! We make sure that that everybody wears their seat belt to avoid these crashes. Crashes affect more than just the person(s) in the crash and so does voter fraud. Which is why we need id's. Maybe voter fraud is rare, maybe it's common. We don't know because it's difficult to find when even basic security measures like showing an ID are ignored. Students have to show an ID to take the SATs. Is voting somehow less important that we shouldn't protect it?

Responses only and no new arguments please since I will not be able to respond. Thank you for the great debate!
SolonKR

Con

My final rebuttals and conclusion:

In the opening paragraph of the final round, Pro contradicts herself. She states that "I don't claim to get rid of all fraud" by supporting IDs, yet she then states that IDs will "help to stop fraud". With the point having been conceded to me in round two that voter fraud is rare, this does not make much sense to cite as a benefit, with such a minimal impact. Pro repeatedly states throughout the entirety of the debate that voter IDs will protect the integrity of elections, but never states how the minimal amount of fraud that rarely ever affects elections is hurting the integrity; her only sources in this regard simply state that it does hurt that integrity.

Cost:
I did in fact quantify the argument. I stated that it could cost a single state "millions of dollars", and in the source I had linked, a more exact figure is given. It's interesting that Pro accuses me incorrectly of having not quantified the argument, when she drops a point due to not quantifying it. Pro states, "Con said, "Pro says that investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly, yet he provides no source". Well here's my source http://www.protectmyvote.com...;. Beside the fact that this source was added in late, the irony is that, with regards to cost, it simply says "investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly." Pro does the very thing she accuses me of, dropping the point by not quantifying the argument.

Discrimination:
Pro did not rebut any of my factually backed up claims about discrimination with any sources. She simply dismisses the study and disparity of ethnic groups registered to vote that I cited last round, going on an tangent about registered voters not being relevant to the argument. The fact is that if legal Hispanic voters are disproportionately not registered to vote, they will also disproportionately not obtain voter IDs; therefore, that source is completely relevant; as well, Pro does not even respond to the study I cited, so Pro drops this point to me.

My opponent then attempts to state that her arguments are better because I only made one argument against IDs and she made five arguments for it. I clearly have made more than one argument; in addition to discrimination, my argument about the cost of IDs is completely relevant and documented. More important than the quantity of arguments, however, is the quality. Pro has been completely unable to refute the two major premises of my argument, those of cost and discrimination. On the other hand, Pro's arguments have all been debunked. Pro has provided 5 points, as she said: A) "voter ID's can help to deter and prevent these rare occurrences of voter fraud thus providing voters with more assurance in their political system", B) "voter fraud is generally only detected after the fact, if at all and investigating and prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly", C) "people support voter ID's" D) "requiring a state-issued photo ID enables the use of common technology to further improve the integrity and efficiency of our election system", and E) "ID's will ensure integrity in our electoral system while reducing fraud". She dropped point B by not providing a source until a round later, which was also not quantified in any way. I rebutted point C by stating that popular support doesn't make a law necessarily right, and she didn't respond to that rebuttal. I've already illustrated repeatedly the fact that A is a non-issue. Point D was responded to with the Help America Vote Act. Point E is almost identical to point A, and was rebutted in the same way that Point A was. As such, Pro's arguments do not stand, while mine do.

My final rebuttal is of Pro's hypothetical example. Voter fraud is nothing like a car crash. One fraudulent vote is nearly never the margin of victory. As well, I've shown that fraud is often successfully detected. As well, Pro already admitted in Round 2 that "even though it may be rare voter ID's can help to deter and prevent these rare occurrences of voter fraud", yet now she makes a U-turn and states that, "Maybe voter fraud is rare, maybe it's common. We don't know..." Pro thus has demonstrated a lack of faith in her own knowledge of the subject; if she cannot trust herself to present the facts, no one else can trust her to present the facts.

I have shown that voting is protected very well already, and that voter IDs are far more cumbersome than any minute benefits they might provide. Pro, on the other hand, has failed to back up many of her claims with specific, factual information, and has even admitted a lack of faith in her own knowledge of the subject.

I'd like to thank Pro for being my first opponent in the Adopt-A-Noob Tournament.
Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
RFD 1/3:

A fun debate to read on an interesting topic. I didn't realize this was one of the AAN debates until Con's final round...

Pro opened R1 by jumping straight into argumentation.

In the first example Pro cites, it's never justified how Voter ID would have solved the problem--these people were registered to vote, and voted. Had there been VID law in place, one presumes that when they registered, they'd have been given said ID, so on its face it seems to fail to support her case.

Pro then moves on to some anecdotal evidence. Even if true (that Pro was told these things), that doesn't make the claims that were told true (that multiple votes happened). The lack of any real evidence in support makes that argument fail to be convincing.

Pro then makes a more general case, arguing that IDs "will ensure integrity in our electoral system while reducing fraud", gives a quote, and argues that VID can prevent/deter impersonation, fake registrations, double voting, and voting by illegal aliens. I see no support for these thus far, no explanation for how, from a mechanics standpoint, this would be.
Posted by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
RFD 2/3:

Con opens R1 by arguing that since 2000, only 10 cases were in-person voter fraud that VID could have prevented. Given that, Con argues that VID is "one of the least efficient ways" to ensure integrity.

Con points out that in the California race, the fraud was discovered without a need for VID law.

Con concedes that VID law can prevent in-person fraud, but argues that in-person fraud is so rare as to be not worthwhile to deal with on a national level.

Pro opens the next round with a joke, then gets into the case proper. Pro argues that voter fraud is more common than Con argued, but gives no justification that that's the case (no hard numbers, in contrast to Con's), and doesn't connect whatever general fraud with VID laws's benefits.

Pro argues that according to Fox, 70% of people support VID, arguing that's sufficient to justify VID law, and then claims that the system of VID would be "simple".

Con opens the next round by noting that there are laws in place to protect the integrity of elections and deter voter fraud. Con then gives reasons why VID has negative impact. His reasons are that it would cost millions of dollars per state (a plausible number for a national system like Pro describes), and that there's discrimination that would only be worsened by VID law.

Con points out that Pro seems to concede that hte problem is not a major one--that it's "rare". Con objects that Pro hasn't justified the notion that "prosecuting election crimes is difficult and costly"...Pro will need to justify it for it to stand.

Con finally argues that the popularity of VID law doesn't make it right, particularly when there's more harm than good by implementation.
Posted by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
RFD 3/3:

Pro opens the next round by arguing that the HAVA passed many reforms to deter voter fraud, but that fraud is still happening--Pro doesn't support this contention or give us context or amount.

Pro objects that there weren't hard numbers in the "costs" rebuttal, but I think even a ballpark of "millions per state" is certainly sufficient, and that, given Pro's failure to justify the contention she made immediately before this complaint, is rather a pot calling the kettle black.

Pro attempts rebuttal of the discrimination point, but I suspect she doesn't quite get the point he was making. Then she argues that her list is bigger, that 5 items is greater than Con's 1. Of course, Con offered more than 1, so this is a bit disingenuous (Pro even responded to "cost" already); Con did reply to the substantive thrust of Pro's argument, and a debate is not a gish gallop anyway--you don't win just by having more arguments. You win by having BETTER arguments.

Pro then throws out a source for the difficulty of policing election fraud, continuing to fail to explicate what she means. Sources do not make arguments for you--voters are not expecte to go to the source to find out what you're talking about. Even Con's "millions per state" cost argument, though vague, gave a sense of the scale of numbers. Pro hasn't given us that sense of scale.

The analogy on seat belts fails, because it's just not true. First, no one gets into an accident BECAUSE of a lack of seat belts. Further, there IS a safety threshold where the benefits don't outweigh the cost--otherwise, every car would have all the safety gear of a Nascar vehicle. That by common knowledge they don't belies Pro's argument, which was disconnected from reality anyway.

Con's final round summarizes Pro's failure to respond to the negative case, and failure to support the meaningful benefit of the positive one.

Arguments to Con. As always, happy to clarify this RFD!
Posted by Wylted 2 years ago
Wylted
Contact me when it's time to vote
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Blade-of-Truth 2 years ago
Blade-of-Truth
deusdiligitmeSolonKRTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct, S&G, Sources - tied. Neither gave reason to award points to the other in any of these categories. Conduct was fair on both sides, S&G was solid from both sides, and sources were utilized by both and were of basically equality in terms of quality. Arguments- Con. This is due simply to the fact that Pro failed to maintain her burden with both Cost and Discrimination. With Cost, Pro failed to recognize that Con did quantify the issue and therefore gave an inadequate rebuttal which failed to convince me of her position. In regards to discrimination, Con effectively showed the correlation between current states of discrimination and how they would affect the process of obtaining voter id's. Overall, I felt the cons did not outweigh the benefits, thus arguments and the debate goes to Con.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 2 years ago
Ragnar
deusdiligitmeSolonKRTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Due to strong sourcing bias, I am withholding sources from my vote... Going into this I assumed it would be state ID or some such, but it seemed to degrade into a special ID card only pulled on election day (assuming you don't just mail your ballot, as some states like Oregon now do). Other problems aside, it felt like pro only skimmed cons case, getting caught with such flawed bits as "If we have no idea what the costs are how are we supposed to weigh it?" after a cost estimate was already presented... Not to mention it's more pro's job to show how cheap it would be (a counter cost estimate to con's would have been ideal, rather than claiming con did not give one, which was very weak). It felt like this debate needed another round to get going.
Vote Placed by YYW 2 years ago
YYW
deusdiligitmeSolonKRTied
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Reasons for voting decision: CON shows that the costs don't outweigh the benefits. It was a fairly clear cut win. I'm surprised that he didn't talk about the relative ease of obtaining a fake ID, though.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
deusdiligitmeSolonKRTied
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.