The Daily Beacon

A group of Nashville students filed a federal lawsuit earlier last week challenging a 2011 Tennessee voter identification law. Nine students from both Fisk University and Tennessee State University ultimately seek to change the law’s exclusion of student IDs as a valid form of voter identification.

Tyler Anselmo, UT junior in political science and active member of the Democratic Party, said he views the law as an attempt by Republicans to exclude younger, traditionally more liberal voters.

For students just becoming eligible to vote, Anselmo sees the law’s exclusion of student ID’s as an unnecessary barrier.

“A lot of students are 18 and they’ll be voting for the first time,” Anselmo said. “It’s very hard if you live, say across the state, to go back home if you want to vote there.”

Anselmo’s concerns may have some founding in statistical data. A study from the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office found that in 2012, the year after Tennessee passed the exclusive law, voter turnout in the state dropped by 2.2 percentage points, or the equivalent to more than 80,000 votes. read more…