New Study Suggests Voter ID Laws Have No Effect

Enrico Cantoni and Vincent Pons have a new paper out on the effect of voter ID laws. Everyone will hate it:

We find the laws have no negative effect on registration or turnout, overall or for any group defined by race, gender, age, or party affiliation….ID requirements have no effect on fraud either – actual or perceived. Overall, our results suggest that efforts to reform voter ID laws may not have much impact on elections.

Naturally you want to see this in chart form. Here it is:

This paper adds to a growing literature that suggests voter ID laws have, at most, a very small effect—and quite possibly no effect at all. If you’re a Republican, this is bad news because you’ve been wasting a lot of time and money trying to repress the votes of Democratic-leaning groups, and apparently it doesn’t work. If you’re a Democrat, this is good news on two fronts. First, it means voter ID laws probably aren’t reducing Democratic turnout after all. Second, it does nothing to rebut the abundant evidence that blacks and Hispanics were the target of these laws, regardless of whether they worked. The fact that Republican leaders are incompetent racists makes them no less racist.

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate