State of Idaho

Idaho H.B. 124 Student ID Removal Challenge (BABE VOTE)

BABE VOTE v. McGrane

Lawsuit filed by BABE VOTE and the League of Women Voters of Idaho against Idaho Secretary of State Phil McGrane (R) challenging House Bill 124, a newly enacted voter suppression law that eliminates the use of a student ID as an acceptable form of identification for in-person voting. Before H.B. 124, acceptable identification included an Idaho driver’s license or identification card issued by the Idaho Transportation Department, passport or other U.S. government issued photo ID, tribal identification card with a photo, a license to carry concealed weapons or a current student identification card with a photo issued by a high school or an accredited higher education institution. H.B. 124 removes student IDs from the acceptable list of identification. The plaintiffs allege that H.B. 124 was enacted in order to make voting “more difficult for young voters and specifically for Idaho students whose school IDs are no longer sufficient for voting.” Moreover, the plaintiffs argue that H.B. 124’s “prohibition on the use of student ID cards — a form of ID which had been accepted for years without resulting in a single known instance of fraud — will disproportionately and disparately abridge the right to vote of young Idaho voters by making it more difficult for them to participate in our democracy.”

Finally, the plaintiffs note that H.B. 124  was enacted in the context of record high voter turnout amongst Idaho youth voters, “but rather than celebrate this surge in voter participation, Republican-controlled legislatures across the country have used the false specter of voter fraud to make it harder for young people to vote.” In turn, the plaintiffs contend that H.B. 124 violates the right to equal protection and the right to vote under the Idaho Constitution. The plaintiffs ask the court to permanently block the enforcement of H.B. 124 and to require the defendant to reinstate student IDs as an acceptable form of voter identification in Idaho.

The plaintiffs later filed an amended complaint that added a challenge to another anti-voting law, House Bill 340, that imposes strict photo ID and proof of residency requirements to register to vote and limits the forms of acceptable identification for registration. 

On Oct. 2, 2023, the trial court dismissed the case, finding that the law does not violate the Idaho Constitution. On Oct. 12, the plaintiffs appealed the dismissal to the Idaho Supreme Court. On April 11, 2024, the Idaho Supreme Court dismissed the case.

Case Documents (trial court)

Case Documents (Id supreme court)

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