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Elections Offices Across State to Participate in Unprecedented Voter Outreach Campaign Regarding New Photo ID Requirement
(Published: October 24, 2011)

As part of an ongoing effort to inform voters about a new law that will require them to show valid photo identification at the polls, election officials in all 95 Tennessee counties will be hosting outreach programs Nov. 1. State election officials believe this is the first time in Tennessee history voter outreach programs have been conducted in all 95 counties on the same day.

The formats may vary from county to county, but most are hosting town hall meetings where citizens can ask questions about the new law.

A list with the time and location of each county’s event can be viewed at http://tnsos.net/Elections/voterid/PresentationsList.php.

The law, which takes effect Jan. 1, requires people to show a valid state or federal government-issued photo ID in order to vote. Examples of acceptable forms of ID include driver licenses, U.S. passports, Department of Safety photo ID cards, U.S. military photo IDs and state or federal government photo ID cards. College student IDs are not acceptable.

There are a number of safeguards in the law to ensure eligible voters are not disenfranchised. The photo ID requirement does not apply to:

Voters who forget to bring photo identification to the polls may cast provisional ballots and return to their local election offices with proof of their identities within two business days after elections.

“I commend our election commissions and administrators of elections for working hard to spread the word about this new law,” Secretary of State Tre Hargett said. “To my knowledge, nothing like this has ever been done before. This outreach campaign is massive and certain to reach a tremendous number of voters.”

For more information about the new law, contact the state Division of Elections at 1-877-850-4959 or your local election commission office.