Steve Deace

Requiring photo IDs for voting constitutes a poll tax, which historically has been used to disenfranchise the poor, specifically poor minorities. Even in the few states where you can apply for, and be granted, a free photo ID still comes at some cost in terms of travel/lost wages/acquisition of other forms of identity needed to get a photo ID.

Poll taxes have been ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court for violating the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

I find it hard to believe that something this basic has never occurred to you/has not been pointed out by someone in your audience, especially given that it's been a common, and valid, reason why people oppose such laws. So you're probably aware of it, and simply too intellectually dishonest to concede that poll taxes are not only unconstitutional, but inherently unfair.

I doubt I'll be getting a check any time soon, though I'll be interested in seeing what mental gymnastics you employ to argue that requiring people to pay (in any way) as a prerequisite for voting is not 'unfair' in whatever reply you may send.

Ryan Hartmann

Before I begin my response to Ryan’s argument, is it just me or is it relatively impossible for Leftists to make an argument for their cause without sounding condescending, smarmy, or rude? Shouldn’t being “open-minded” and “tolerant” make one polite, courteous, and syrupy sweet?

But I digress.

As to Ryan’s point, in his argument he says the following: “Even in the few states where you can apply for, and be granted, a free photo ID still comes at some cost in terms of travel/lost wages/acquisition of other forms of identity needed to get a photo ID.”

One of those travel costs Ryan cited would be gas.

According to the 2013 Energy Almanac, the national average price for a gallon of gas was $3.83 as of August 19th. The 2013 Energy Almanac says 70 cents of that price is various state and federal sales/excise taxes—which is roughly a 20% tax rate.

So according to Ryan’, um, logic…the guvment is already imposing a 20% poll tax on anyone who drives to vote. If someone goes to drive to vote in New York City they may face an additional 18% tax/surtax on parking or garaging their motor vehicle. So that’s another potential poll tax according to Ryan’s, um, logic. Even if someone walks they’re facing a poll tax according to Ryan’s, um, logic. According to this white paper by the Democrat (Party) Leadership Conference, shoe tariffs are among “America’s worst tax.”

Thus, if Ryan is consistent in his, um, logic that all of these various levies on methods of transportation to take advantage of your right to vote should be eliminated as to avoid what amounts to a “poll tax,” I’m happy to send him $100.

Thanks for playing.


Steve Deace

Steve Deace is a nationally-syndicated radio host for the USA Radio Network. His radio program has been featured in major media such as Fox News, CBS News, ABC News, CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Politico, The Weekly Standard, and Real Clear Politics among others. He's one of the top 100 talk show hosts in America according to Talkers Magazine. In 2013 he wrote the second-most shared column of the year for USA Today, defending "Duck Dynasty" and traditional American values. In addition to being a contributor for Conservative Review, USA Today, and Town Hall.com, Deace is a columnist for The Washington Times. He is also the author of the book "Rules for Patriots: How Conservatives Can Win Again," which includes a foreword by David Limbaugh and is endorsed by a who's who of conservative leaders. He lives in Iowa with his wife Amy, and their three children: Ana, Zoe, Noah You can follow him on Twitter @SteveDeaceShow.