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SD-22: Birdwell files photo ID measure

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AUSTIN - State Senator Brian Birdwell, R- Granbury, joint authored legislation with Senator Troy Fraser, R- Horseshoe Bay, on Monday, Nov. 8 to increase confidence in-person voter fraud doesn’t occur.

Twelve Republican senate members signed on as co-authors.

"Voter ID will protect the sanctity of the ballot box by verifying a voter is who they say they are," said Birdwell.

  Senate Bill 178 would require that each voter show photo identification before being able to cast a vote

"I believe that voting is a citizens’ most precious right and we need to ensure the votes cast are by those who are afforded the right under the Constitution of the United States."

Under the legislation, a voter would be required to show either a current Texas driver’s license or ID card, a current U.S. military ID card, a current US passport, or a U.S. citizenship certificate containing a photo before casting a ballot.

"Voter ID is simply putting into practice the intent of the current law- that the person who shows up at the polls is who he or she claims to be," said Fraser.

The bill also would increase the penalties for committing voter fraud.

"Voter impersonation is a serious crime, but without a photo ID requirement we can never have confidence in our system of voting."

Birdwell serves senate district 22, which includes all of Ellis County.

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