You are here

Georgia Supreme Court Declares Voter ID Law Constitutional

PRESS ADVISORY

Georgia Supreme Court Declares Voter ID Law Constitutional

March 8, 2011

The Georgia Supreme Court upheld yesterday the 2006 Photo ID Act, which requires Georgia voters to show photo identification before casting ballots. The court’s 6-1 decision found that the law has not denied any lawfully registered voter the right to vote.

Author of the decision, Justice Hugh Thompson, wrote, “As did virtually every other court that considered this issue, we find the photo ID requirement as implemented in the 2006 Act to be a minimal, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory restriction which is warranted by the important regulatory interests of preventing voter fraud.”

The court agreed with the State that the law does not disenfranchise voters because, “a registered voter who does not possess a photo ID and who desires to vote in person can obtain a free photo ID at one or more locations in the county of his or her residence.” Further, if a registered voter does not have a photo ID at the polls, he or she may cast a provisional ballot and the vote will be counted if an acceptable photo ID is presented within 48 hours. Alternatively, voters still have the option to vote by absentee ballot.

Attorney General Sam Olens commended the Supreme Court’s decision saying, “The ability to vote is one of our most sacred and fundamental rights as American citizens. We must protect the integrity of the democratic process by ensuring that only lawfully registered voters cast ballots. I appreciate the Georgia Supreme Court upholding the 2006 Photo ID Act, which gives us the tools to prevent voter fraud.”