GOP puts politics above democracy

Two recent Republican ideas are antidemocratic.

by Daily Editorial Board

With unprecedented zeal, the GOP officials in MinnesotaâÄôs State Capitol have recently proposed ideas which are nothing short of attacks on the democracy they have sworn to uphold. The first is to place added regulations on how residents and citizens may vote at the polls, the second to require a 60-vote majority to raise taxes. The regulations on votersâÄô photo IDs are egregious acts against the already underrepresented, while the proposal requiring a supermajority will do more than just stifle MinnesotaâÄôs government. Requiring a photo ID with an address in the district in which you vote is a hurdle for the young, elderly and poor voters in our state who move more frequently and are less likely to have identification. Voter fraud has been shown multiple times to be an imagined issue and requiring an ID would undoubtedly diminish voter turnout. In a democracy, we should err on the side of people having more power, not less. As for the issue of needing a supermajority to pass laws on taxes, we need only look to California as a model of the consequences of such a decision and the embarrassing budget situation they are currently facing because of it. Requiring a 60-vote majority on tax issues will grind government to a halt âÄî weâÄôve already seen how dysfunctional the U.S. Senate has become now that it effectively takes 60 votes to get any bill passed. Put simply, these proposals are undemocratic. They are motivated purely by political calculations and will make it harder for government to function and for people to have a say in how it does. The extreme political games unfolding at our state Capitol at the expense of MinnesotaâÄôs residents need to stop.