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SPOTLIGHT
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Proving you are you

Published on -8/5/2012, 5:33 PM

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Tuesday's election likely will follow the trend of previous primaries with a turnout of less than 20 percent or registered voters. It will, however, be the first S.A.F.E. election held in the Sunflower State.

S.A.F.E. refers to the Kansas Secure and Fair Elections Act signed into law last year by Gov. Sam Brownback. Basically, it requires all voters to show valid identification before they can receive a ballot. Before heading to the polls Tuesday, ensure you have one of the following on your person:

* Kansas driver's license,

* Non-driver ID card,

* Concealed carry handgun license,

* U.S. passport,

* Government employee ID,

* U.S. military ID,

* Kansas college ID,

* Government public assistance ID, or

* Indian tribe ID.

Individuals 65 or older whose ID has expired can still use that as long as it has a picture.

For those showing up to vote without the proper identification, the best they can do it cast a provisional ballot. Then they will have between six and nine days to show their valid ID to the county election officer for their vote to count.

Election officials are taking the new law seriously. In Hutchinson recently, retired Reno County District Judge Richard Rome showed up to cast an advance ballot. He personally knew all three people working at the polling table. His own portrait hangs on a wall in the very courthouse where he was attempting to vote. And since he had just renewed his driver's license and didn't have a new photo one in his possession, he couldn't vote. Fortunately, his expired license with photo was in his car -- so the problem was resolved.

The point is, even if your own spouse is working at the polls, don't expect special treatment.

But don't let the new rules change your plans. If you haven't cast your ballot already, make sure you do it Tuesday. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Voting remains one of the easiest ways to participate in this democratic republic. Make your voice heard.

Editorial by Patrick Lowry

plowry@dailynews.net

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