There's already a lot of misinformation circulating about the 2020 elections, some of it probably from trolls and some from uninformed and well-intentioned people. One of the most harmful lies/misunderstandings is that a REAL ID will be needed to vote in NC. The reason this is so bad is that there's already a lot of confusion about the voter photo ID that WILL be needed to vote in 2020, and this just compounds it and can keep less-involved/low-information people from voting.
We'll start with the true part - NC's voter photo ID law goes into effect for the 2020 elections. Here's a good resource about that from the non-partisan group, You Can Vote. Their core message is "If you have one of these ID's, bring it with you to vote in 2020! If not, YOU CAN VOTE! Ask for the waiver and a ballot."
YOU DO NOT NEED A PHOTO ID TO VOTE IN 2019 ELECTIONS!
And here's the punchline for today's post:
YOU DO NOT NEED A REAL ID TO VOTE IN 2020 ELECTIONS!
What is REAL ID?
Formulated in the wake of 9/11, the Real ID Act of 2005, enacted May 11, 2005, is an Act of Congress that modifies U.S. federal law pertaining to security, authentication, and issuance procedures standards for state driver's licenses and identity documents, as well as various immigration issues pertaining to terrorism. Although the Act was passed in 2005, the deadline for all states to be in compliance is October 1, 2020, which is why it's in the news and you're seeing signs in airports now. The NC Dept of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has been issuing REAL IDs on request since May 1, 2017 - they have a gold star in the top right corner.
As of October 1, 2020, you will need to show a REAL ID, US passport, or other federally-approved form of identification to fly on commerical airlines and enter secure federal buildings, military bases, and nuclear facilities. You will still need a US passport to travel internationally, REAL ID is for domestic air travel.
REAL ID requirements do NOT apply to:
- VOTING OR REGISTERING TO VOTE
- Applying for or receiving federal benefits
- Being licensed by a state to drive
- Entering federal facilities that do not require identification
- Accessing health- or life-preserving services, law enforcement, or constitutionally protected activities (including a defendant’s access to court proceedings)
- Participating in law enforcement proceedings or investigation.
Many people DO NOT NEED a REAL ID:
- those under 18 years old
- those who need an ID only for purposes of identification
- those who don’t mind bringing another TSA-approved ID (like a passport) to fly domestically starting on Oct. 1, 2020.
You would likely benefit from having a REAL ID if you frequently:
- Fly on domestic commercial airlines
- Visit nuclear sites
- Visit military bases without military ID
- Visit federal courthouses, federal prisons or other secure federal facilities.
Want to get a REAL ID, even though you don't need it to vote?
- You must apply for a REAL ID in person at a DMV office and bring additional documentation with you.
- NC DMV REAL ID INFO
- Here's a link to the Dept of Homeland Security's public FAQs on REAL ID.
Please repeat after me and share with everyone you know:
REAL IDs ARE COMPLETELY OPTIONAL, AND YOU DO NOT NEED ONE TO VOTE!
Tags: (2020 Elections, Voter ID, NCPol)
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