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Report: Voter ID Laws Could Have Serious Impact on Transgender Voters

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It’s clear that Voter ID laws disproportionately impact young Americans, people of color, and the poor. Now, there’s more evidence of the effect on transgender voters.

CREDIT: istockphoto / Daniel Sofer

Last year, I wrote here, along with Vincent Villano of the National Center for Transgender Equality, that there needed to be an investigation of Voter ID laws through the lens of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey. On Monday, the Williams Institute released a thorough report [PDF] on exactly that—a rigorous analysis with grim conclusions.

General interest publications are beginning to notice, too. The Nation has an excellent blog post detailing the marginalization of trans people, even in discussions of who’s being marginalized by this law.

As more and more analysis and information about these Voter ID laws and their impact on many different communities is released, there’s been growing realization in mainstream circles about the true nature of these laws.

Even the masterminds behind them don’t seem able to defend the laws: On Tuesday, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) announced it was abolishing its “Public Safety and Elections Task Force,” which is also responsible for the controversial Stand Your Ground laws and anti-immigrant legislation like Arizona’s SB1070.

Now there’s evidence that voter suppression is not just a racial and economic justice issue, but an LGBT issue as well. Let’s hope the momentum continues.

Sam Menefee-Libey is the LGBTQ Advocate with Campus Progress.

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