The House majority whip has repeatedly opposed such measures, arguing that ID requirements and other traditional expectations are racist.
But Clyburn has now flip-flopped because Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., has hinted at his support for such requirements.
Polling also shows that a considerable number of minorities and other core components of the Democrat base support such measures, despite the barrage of anti-election-integrity rhetoric from the Left in its failed push to pass the HR1 power-grab bill.
In an interview with CNN on Saturday, Clyburn claimed that he would “absolutely” support such measures.
But he stopped short of saying it needed to be a photographic ID as conservatives have pushed for, with Democrats also having pushed for automatic registration measures that would accidentally sweep many illegal immigrants onto the loosely maintained voter rolls.
“When I first registered to vote as a 21-year-old—back then, 18-year-olds could not vote—I got a voter registration card, and I always present that voter registration card to vote. And that’s voter ID,” Clyburn said. “We are always for voter ID. We are never for disproportionate voter ID.”
In shifting his argument, Clyburn claimed that it makes sense to require an ID to vote because many other activities require IDs as well.
“When you tell me that you got to have a photo ID and a photo for a student or activity card is not good but for a hunting license it is good, that’s where the rub is,” he said, despite earlier calling such measures “voter suppression.
Clyburn, who has rebuked Manchin repeatedly for his willingness to compromise, appears to have compromised himself.
After the West Virginia Senator argued for the dialing back of some of the more extremist elements of HR1 in favor of a compromise with conservatives, Clyburn criticized him.
“I’m insulted when he tells me that it’s more important to maintain a relationship with the minority in the U.S. Senate than it is for you to maintain a relationship with the minority of voters in America,” Clyburn said of Manchin. “That’s insulting to me.”
Counting two independents who caucus with the Democrats, the Senate is currently split 50–50, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tie-breaking vote.
But now Clyburn appears to be on board, showing a new vigor for political compromise.\
Headline USA’s Ben Sellers contributed to this report.