The Obama administration is again standing in the way of a duly enacted state law that requires voters to present valid photo identification before casting ballots.
The Obama Justice Department has already misused its authority by blocking such a law in South Carolina, and now it is going after the state of Texas, which enacted its voter ID law in 2011.
Tennessee has a similar law, and our state's recent Super Tuesday primary came and went without evidence that the voting rights of the elderly, poor and minorities were somehow infringed. In fact, the smooth primary voting in Tennessee was in marked contrast to the irresponsible predictions of "disenfranchisement" that opponents of the photo ID law had made prior to Super Tuesday.
In Texas' case, the Justice Department says the photo ID law cannot stand because Hispanic voters are less likely than other voters to have the required ID.
What the department downplays is the fact that in Texas, as in other states with photo ID laws, residents may obtain a free, state-issued photo ID card that is valid for voting. In addition, Texas voters who go to the polls without one of the approved types of identification may cast a provisional ballot and need only present a valid ID card at the registrar's office within six days of the election to have their ballots counted. The disabled as well as voters who have religious objections to having their picture taken also are exempt.
Those allowances are more than reasonable, and they make it simply ridiculous to claim that the ID requirement places an undue burden on voters.
What the photo ID rule may do, however, is prevent an individual from assuming someone else's identity and fraudulently casting a ballot in that person's name.
Protecting the ballot box from fraud is a well-justified goal of government -- in Texas, Tennessee, Georgia or any other state -- and the Obama administration should stop trying to block such commonsense measures.