The Big Story Blog

Senate GOP leader sees photo ID, tax fix votes likely

Posted at 11:22 AM on January 24, 2012 by Paul Tosto
Filed under: Politics

Should the state's constitution be changed to require people to show a photo ID in order to vote? It's a question that Minnesotans are likely to see on their November ballots.

"Photo ID is probably going to go on the ballot," Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem said this morning on MPR News.

Here's some background on this issue from MPR News reporter Tim Pugmire:

Gov. Mark Dayton rejected a Republican-backed bill last spring that would have required Minnesotans to show photo identification to vote. In his veto letter, Dayton noted that the measure would have forced local governments to spend money and that it did not have broad bipartisan support.

But voter ID supporters insist the measure is needed to prevent election fraud. That's why they've introduced legislation that would bypass Dayton and allow voters to make the change through a constitutional amendment. Governors cannot veto constitutional amendments.

If a majority of the Legislature approves one, it will show up on the ballot in November.

Speaking on MPR News, Senjem, R-Rochester, also mentioned that the Legislature will take a serious look at reworking some of the controversial tax changes lawmakers made during the summer in order to close a $5 billion budget deficit and end a painful state government shutdown.

Those changes led to many businesses around the state facing dramatic property tax increases.

Acknowledging the business backlash, Senjem said he heard the concerns "loud and clear....Were going to see if we can put a band-aid on some of this."


About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.