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MLK’s Son Offered Bipartisan Solution to Voter ID Debate But Now Wants HR1

'I cannot emphasize enough the positive impact a free and easy-to-obtain photo ID will have for those who are marginalized... '

As Martin Luther King Jr. Day approaches, it may be helpful to remember a bipartisan proposal from his son that could help Democrats and Republicans agree on election reform.

Martin Luther King III and former U.N. ambassador Andrew Young in 2017 proposed a universal “Freedom Card” to then-President-elect Donald Trump so that all citizens have access to voter ID, National Review reported.

Last December, MLK III abandoned his former bipartisan stance on voter IDs and instead advocated for the Democratic Party’s election bill, a radical takeover of American elections that would canonize unsafe voting practices in federal law, CNN reported.

King said America should not celebrate MLK Day unless Congress restores “the very voting rights protections my father and countless other civil rights leaders bled to secure.”

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The original Freedom Card plan, though, was a bipartisan hit. Trump liked the idea, especially because he believed it could help workplaces verify a worker’s citizenship on I-9 forms, but his administration never moved forward with it.

Martin Luther King III and Young said they believe that both Democrats and Republicans have fair criticisms about America’s election system.

The Freedom Card would let American citizens add pictures to their Social Security cards so that they can double as photo IDs for voting, applying for government programs, traveling, and other purposes.

Only American citizens without government-issued photo IDs would have photographs added to their Social Security cards to prevent fraud risk from multiplying.

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King and Young think this will address progressives’ fear that low-income people cannot afford government-issued photo IDs, like a driver’s license, and conservatives’ concern that fraud distorts elections without mandatory photo ID.

“My father used to talk about ending the silence of good people,” King said. “I cannot emphasize enough the positive impact a free and easy-to-obtain photo ID will have for those who are marginalized.”

Former President Bill Clinton‘s administration studied the Freedom Card proposal and estimated that adding photo ID to Social Security cards would cost about eight cents per person.

The bipartisan proposal has stalled because Democrats reflexively oppose voter ID laws because they would prevent illegal aliens and other ineligible voters from casting ballots.

 

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