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Pennsylvania Voters Asked To Show ID Cards As State Prepares For New Law

By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Tuesday's Pennsylvania primary provided a "dry run" for the state's new voter ID law (see related story).

Only the most dedicated voters tend to show up for the primary, and this year's election was no different -- except that for the first time voters were being asked to show ID.

Not because they needed it, but to prepare them for the requirement that starts in November.

"A lot of people came prepared today with their ID," says Amy Greer, an election judge at a polling place at 23rd and Race Streets, in center city Philadelphia.  She says many voters were not happy about showing their ID, giving poll workers an earful.

"Many, many people have said something," she tells KYW Newsradio.  "And we've had a couple of people refuse to show their ID, knowing full well that they don't have to show their ID this time and it's sitting in their wallets. But they're unwilling to show it."

At a polling place in the 8th Ward, at 10th and Ellsworth in South Philadelphia, Chris Keelty says he's voted there for years.  He says he lost his driver's license but was ready today with his passport -- although it turned out he didn't need it.

"I wasn't asked for ID," he says.  "They asked for my address, they asked me to sign a piece of paper, but that was all the identification they requested."

Tracey Garrett is a committeeman in the 20th Ward, at Yorktown Arms.  He says they asked everyone for IDs today, and it was smooth sailing.

"A lot of people that have been coming here had their ID, so we really didn't have to ask. For those we did have to ask, they had their IDs," he said.

Garrett says he hopes it's this smooth in November.

Greer, the center city election judge, has worked at her polling place for three years, and says it has a number of senior citizens and disabled voters who may not have proper ID for the general election.

"This particular polling place generally has an exceptional turnout.  I would hate to be the election judge to have to turn those people away in November," she said today.

Read Cherri Gregg's special report: Pennsylvania's New Voter ID Law

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