Dueling statistics in Pa. voter ID trial

    The trial over the constitutionality of Pennsylvania’s voter identification law is finished for the week.


    An expert witness presented by the state’s lawyers Thursday challenged claims that hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvania voters lack the proper ID they would need to vote in the next election if the law were enforced.

    An analysis previously presented by challengers suggested half-a-million registered voters in Pennsylvania don’t have valid ID on record with the state.

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    Statistician William Wecker called that estimate “the biggest leap” in logic he’s ever seen.

    He says his own analysis found 48,000 people likely to have college-issued ID and 18,000 people likely to have ID issued by their care facilities.

    Michael Rubin, one of the lawyers challenging voter ID, says there’s a problem with that analysis.

    “A lot of those colleges he used don’t issue IDs,” Rubin said. “A lot of the care facilities — most of the care facilities — that he used to come up with these numbers don’t issue IDs.”

    On cross examination, Wecker said he did not check to see if the schools and the care facilities he surveyed actually do issue proper identification to vote.

    Lawyers challenging the measure say even if Wecker’s numbers were correct, they don’t eclipse the remaining hundreds of thousands of registered voters found to have no ID in the form of a driver’s license or a Department of State voting ID card.

    But lawyers for the state say many colleges and care facilities aren’t issuing photo IDs now because the law has been on hold.

    Commonwealth attorneys, still in the midst of presenting their case, plan to call at least two more witnesses.Court is scheduled to be back in session on Tuesday. And the trial is expected to last through next Wednesday

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