How will Gov. Brad Henry vote on election ID bill?

BY MICHAEL MCNUTT Modified: April 2, 2009 at 8:06 am •  Published: April 2, 2009
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Henry is troubled the bill also would extend the time for early voting, an issue he thinks should be dealt with separately, Sund said.

The governor "specifically asked lawmakers not to logroll his early voting proposal into the voter I.D. bill, but those wishes were ignored,” Sund said.

"The governor believes both issues should be considered separately, passing or failing on their merits.”

SB 4 would extend the time voters could cast in-person absentee ballots, starting at 1 p.m. on the Wednesday before a general election. Voters now may cast in-person absentee ballots on the Friday, Saturday and Monday before an election.

What’s ahead?
Ford said if Henry vetoes the measure, he would work on another bill that would bypass the governor and send the question of voter ID to a vote of the people.

House Democratic leader Danny Morgan opposed SB 4, saying legislators’ time would be better spent addressing real problems, not imaginary ones.

"Not even the Republican House author of the bill could offer a case of voter fraud,” said Morgan, of Prague. "It’s funny to me that we took up this unnecessary legislation on the same day as we were supposed to finalize a budget for common education.”

Rep. Richard Morrissette, D-Oklahoma City, tried unsuccessfully Wednesday to gut the bill and require that the voter identification card issued by county election officials be the only form voters would have to show in order to cast a ballot.

The measure was killed in a parliamentary move.

"This could have been a great, bipartisan way to address the concerns of those who are asking for voter ID legislation,” said Morrissette, who voted against SB 4.

"Because it was filed by a Democrat, I think my colleagues ignored it without any consideration.”


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INSIDE

• State wildlife panel votes to establish black bear hunting season


• House panel OKs a measure to keep offspring of cloned horses from racing

PAGE 3A


• Senate committee

advances official language bill

PAGE 5A


• Race riot memorial measure moves to full House

PAGE 6A


SENATE BILL 4
Under the measure, a voter who is unable to provide any proof of identity would be allowed to sign a statement under oath swearing to his or her identity and then vote. Anyone found to have signed the oath falsely could be prosecuted.

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