Columbia, MO – Yesterday, Congressman Lacy Clay, State Senator Gina Walsh (Heat and Frost Insulators Local 1 and president of the Missouri Building Trades Council), State Senator-elect Brian Williams, State Representative and Senator-elect Karla May (CWA 6300), and State Representative-elect Wiley Price IV called on Josh Hawley to drop his appeal of last week’s voter ID ruling, which expanded voting rights in Missouri.
Cole County Circuit Judge Richard Callahan’s decision, issued Oct. 9 did away with a key provision of Missouri’s photo voter identification law – the requirement for voters to sign an affidavit under penalty of perjury that they don’t have a form of ID authorized by the law for voting purposes – because the same law also allows voters without a driver’s license or non-driver state ID card to continue to use alternate forms of ID that previously had been allowed, such as a voter registration card, bank statement, utility bill or student ID.
Callahan said the document, on its face, was contradictory, misleading and an “outright misstatement of law,” and ordered the Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft’s office to stop advertising that a photo identification is required to cast a ballot.
Hawley, a Republican who is running for U.S. Senate against incumbent Democrat Claire McCaskill, responded by quickly filing an appeal and emergency stay petition with the Missouri Supreme Court on behalf of Ashcroft.
Clay called Hawley’s court filing a misuse of public funds in an 11th-hour attempt to suppress voter turnout.
“Josh Hawley is choosing to use your tax dollars to file this ridiculous appeal in a last-minute effort to disenfranchise thousands of Missouri voters,” Clay said.
“Instead of stepping up to protect the voting rights of these Missourians who are most at risk of being disenfranchised, our AG, Josh Hawley, is appealing Judge Callahan’s ruling in order to suppress the vote of minorities, the disabled and the rural poor who are most likely to vote for his opponent,” Clay said.
State Representative and Senator-elect May added, “On Nov. 6, vote against any person that’s running for office that’s trying to stop you, the people – who are the government – from voting.”