Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) says Virginia’s voter identification bills, passed last week by the General Assembly, have a “50-50” chance of surviving a review by the U.S. Justice Department.
The federal government has already moved to block voter ID laws in Texas and South Carolina, saying they would disproportionately harm minority voters.
“Given what they’re doing with the others states, I don’t know,’’ Cuccinelli told C-SPAN. “I’d give about a 50 50 shot.’’
Republican legislatures nationwide have been adopting stricter identification standards since the 2000 presidential election, saying they are needed to combat voter fraud.
Virginia is one of 16 states that have a history of discrimination and must receive federal approval before changing voting laws. The states must prove to the federal government that the new statutes would not discriminate against minorities.
Texas and South Carolina require voters to present government-issued photo identification at the polls. But Virginia’s measure, which has not been signed into law, requires some form of ID but expands the types of acceptable voter identification to include such things as utility bills and bank statements.
Cuccinelli said its just the latest example of “overreach’’ by the Obama administration.
“This president and his administration are the biggest law breakers to run the federal government in our lifetimes,’’ he said. “And they are trampling the state and suffocating economic opportunities the way they are functioning. At least you need to play by the rules. The rules being the law.’’
Cuccinelli, who is running against Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R) in a GOP primary next year, declined to disclose who he voted for president in the primary this month, but did say that Republicans would be “giving up the issue” of federal health care if they pick Mitt Romney as their nominee.
“You’re effectively giving that issue up if you select Romney as the nominee,’’ Cuccinelli said in an interview that focused heavily, but not completely, on health care.
The show, which was taped Thursday and will air Sunday, can be found online here . Cuccinelli was interviewed by a pair of reporters from The Washington Post and Washington Times.