Mississippi Trying to Educate People about Voter ID Law

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Jackson, Miss.
Mississippi's top elections official is starting to run TV ads explaining the state's voter identification law. There are two 30-second commercials, one that started airing Monday and another that starts in January.

Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann says Mississippi voters will have to start showing photo ID at the polls in June, and the state will issue a free ID card to any voter who needs one.

In both TV commercials, Hosemann explains that people don't need to apply for a voter ID card if they already have an acceptable form of photo identification such as a driver's license, college student ID card, passport or gun permit.

He says a driver's license that's expired for up to 10 years can still be used for voting.

Equipment that is needed to make voter IDs is expected to arrive in Lauderdale County next week, according to Circuit Clerk Donna Jill Johnson. Election officials are expected to be trained on how to use the equipment next month.

But Johnson estimates that only a small number of locals will need to get one.

"In Lauderdale County it will be less than 2%, or maybe 1%, that will require a picture through our office because most everybody's got a driver's license," said Johnson.

In coming months Johnson says her office will do a great deal to inform the public about what will and will not qualify as an appropriate picture ID for voting in Mississippi.

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