Voting is supposed to be open to all U.S. citizens, but one Wisconsin law may be making it more difficult. Image: Flickr / hjl / CC-BY

In the state of Wisconsin, voting requires a state-issued ID card. The law is being challenged in the courts, but it is currently in effect. State-issued ID cards for purposes of voting are supposed to be free, but state officials are making it difficult to obtain that free registration card.

Wisconsin voter ID requirement

In the state of Wisconsin, voting requires a Wisconsin State Department of Transportation-issued Drivers License number or Wisconsin Identification card. Provisional voting is allowed if individuals do not have one of these cards with them, but they must provide the information within three days. The DMV is required to provide an identification card for voting purposes for free, though a state-issued identification card is $28.

Getting a free Voter ID card

In a memo published by The Capital Times, a Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles official directed employees to not offer or mention the fact that state ID cards can be obtained for free. Instead, the employees are told to offer information on the voter registration cards only if the individual knows to check the appropriate box. Getting these cards requires proof of identity, such as a school ID or expired ID card. The card also requires proof of residency, which includes utility bills, bank statements, paychecks, government documents, or real estate tax bills. There have been reports that the Wisconsin DMV has been skeptical about some attempts to prove residency.

Legal challenges to the ID requirement

The Wisconsin requirement that all voters show a Wisconsin state identification card when voting is being challenged in court. The League of Women Voters plans to file suit, claiming that the new voter ID law provides an unnecessary restriction that limits access to voting. The law is written to allow for free access to Voter ID cards, which are the same as Wisconsin state ID cards. The argument is that requirements for the free cards are too restrictive, and the $28 fee that voters are not informed of can be waived unless they already know to check the box could create what is essentially a tax on voting. States are allowed to limit voting to individuals who meet residency requirements of the state, but the law also requires any U.S. citizen who is over the age of 18 be allowed to vote without restriction.


USA Today:
Wisconsin State Government:
Campus Progress:

Post By bryanh (1,420 Posts)


Do you have a fantastic idea related to this article, but just don't have the money you need to start your own company or side-business? Get the loans you need from to help get your new company underway, from the small loan professionals at PersonalMoneyNetwork.

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

Pacific Gas and Electric Co., a northern California utility, has agreed to pay $70 million to the California town of San Bruno for a pipeline explosion that killed eight people in 2010. Company says it’s remorseful The San Francisco-based power company’s president, Chris Johns, released a statement Monday, saying PG&E is sorry and eager to […]

Judge stabbed and deputy shot in Washington courthouse

Grays Harbor County Courthouse

Following a standoff in a Washington state county courtroom Friday, a man reportedly escaped after shooting a sheriff’s deputy in the shoulder and stabbing a judge in the neck. The man is still at large. Treachery among the tree farms The incident occurred Friday afternoon in the western Washington town of Montesano, which bills itself […]

Microraptor was one flashy little dinosaur

Microraptor fossil

A team of Chinese and American scientists have found that Microraptor, a small four winged dinosaur that went extinct about 130 million years ago, was likely black and almost certainly had glossy, iridescent feathers. Until now, the coloring of extinct creatures was a matter of pure speculation. That may no longer be the case. The […]

Autocorrected message leads to school lockdown

Homage to the Sun

Adjacent schools in Georgia were locked down for two hours Wednesday after a text message reportedly warned of a “gunman” on campus. Later, it was learned that the message was the result of a smartphone autocorrect function, attempting to “fix” the misspelled slang word “gunna.” A series of mixups A series of mixups led to […]