Report from Rep Denny McNamara

Representative Denny McNamara (R) District 57B

Representative Denny McNamara (R) District 57B

By Rep. Denny McNamara, 3/23/2012

Hello from St. Paul,

This week, the Minnesota House approved a bill allowing Minnesotans to decide if voters need to provide photo identification before securing a ballot has been approved by the Minnesota House. The Senate is debating similar legislation.

The bill would ask voters if they want to amend Minnesota’s Constitution in order to require all voters to show valid photo identification on Election Day. Valid identification consists of a driver’s license or state issued identification card. Those who do not have valid photo identification would be issued one by the State of Minnesota free of charge.

If approved by the voters, an election judge would simply prove that a Minnesotan can legally vote by visually identifying him and matching his name and address with those listed on the eligible voter rolls.

I voted in favor of this bill because it’s just good common sense. It’s not designed to keep people away from the polls as some of the critics claim, but it will ensure that every election is legitimate because only legal Minnesota voters would be able to cast a ballot.

You can’t write a check, make a bank withdrawal, or be allowed onto an airplane without showing your photo identification. Most people who go to vote expect to be carded because they’re so used to being asked for an ID everywhere else.

If you are a legal Minnesota resident, you should have no problem showing your identification to an election judge every two years. And if this amendment is approved and you don’t have a driver’s license, you’ll basically have two years to get one – free of charge – from the state before it’s required before the 2014 election. I think this is a good bill that will ensure that our election integrity is maintained, as it has in dozens of other states that require identification prior to voting.

Also this week, the Minnesota House approved the Tax Relief and Job Creation Act, a bill that’s designed to encourage employers to invest in their business and create more jobs. The legislation contains a number of proposals that would help our businesses thrive, including reducing the statewide business property tax rate to help businesses invest in employees; increasing our investment in programs that have proven to assist start-up companies in our state; providing incentives to create a well-trained work force; and helping the men and women who fought for our country find jobs back home.

Our economy is in much better shape than in 2011. The policies we’ve approved have turned a $5.1 billion deficit into a $1.2 billion surplus, and our unemployment numbers continue to improve. But if Minnesota is going to sustain this financial success, we have to put more Minnesotans to work, and I believe this bill will do exactly that.

Keep in touch,

Representative Denny McNamara
Dist. 57B
Chair of the Committee on Environment, Energy
and Natural Resources Policy and Finance
375 State Office Building
100 Rev.Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, Mn. 55155-1298
Phone (651) 296-3135

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