published Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Tenn. voter ID law upheld; library card ruled OK

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Tennessee Court of Appeals has upheld the state's new law requiring voters to show photo identification at polling places and ruled that election officials must accept an ID issued by the Memphis library.

A three-judge panel of the court ruled unanimously Thursday in a case brought by the city of Memphis and two voters who lacked photo ID and cast provisional ballots during the August primary.

Judges expedited the ruling because early voting for the Nov. 6 election is under way.

The opinion said the identification requirement is allowed under the state constitution and the cost of obtaining a birth certificate to get a photo ID doesn't amount to a poll tax.

It overruled a lower court by finding that the library cards qualify as government-issued identification.

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