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News Opinion

The costs of voter ID laws outweigh the benefits

Former Gov. Robert L Ehrlich Jr. would have us believe that voter fraud is rampant because of "2.4 million invalid voter registrations and nearly 2 million dead people still on U.S. voter rolls" ("Voter ID laws uphold system's integrity," Feb. 26).

However, he neglects to mention that, aside from such clerical errors, the incidence of voter fraud is virtually negligible.

By contrast, criminals can and do use over-the-counter medications to produce illegal drugs — so the law requiring Mr. Ehrlich to show an ID to obtain Claritin D actually does save lives.

With any law, legislators and voters must balance costs and benefits. In Baltimore and most other cities, thousands of elderly and often infirm U.S. citizens have no driver's license, passport or student ID, and no way to get to the MVA to obtain a photo-ID.

Consequently, voter-ID laws will disenfranchise citizens without providing significant benefits to the integrity of the electoral system.

B. Krueger, Ellicott City

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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