June 11, 2007
Director of Communications
Secretary of State Karen Handel Hails Voter ID Ruling
Atlanta -- Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel welcomed today’s unanimous ruling of the Georgia Supreme Court reversing last fall’s decision by a Fulton County Superior Court Judge that Georgia’s Photo ID law was unconstitutional. In its decision, the Georgia Supreme Court found that the plaintiff, Rosalind Lake, is not harmed by the 2006 law and, therefore, lacks standing to bring the lawsuit.
“I am very pleased that the Georgia Supreme Court has reversed the lower court. This ruling vindicates the position of our state. The ruling also shows that opponents of this common-sense requirement struggle to find voters who are harmed by the law’s implementation. Since early voting and in-person absentee balloting have already begun in the special election for the 10th Congressional District and State Senate 24, we will not change the procedure mid-election the June 19, 2007 special election or potential run-offs. Therefore, we will begin education, out-reach and training efforts for the implementation of this law for the September local special elections,” Secretary Handel said.
Opponents of the legislation filed their original state court challenge in DeKalb County but dismissed that lawsuit after the standing of the plaintiff in that case to challenge the law was called into question. Two plaintiffs then brought suit in Fulton County, but one of the two dropped out of the suit when it was discovered he had a photo ID to vote in person. Today's Georgia Supreme Court's decision holding that the other plaintiff also lacked standing to challenge the law supports the State's position that the Photo ID law does not impose any significant burden upon registered voters.