New Chicago ID card created for undocumented immigrants will be accepted for voter registration

By Scot Bertram | Illinois News Network

Shutterstock photo

A new municipal ID designed primarily for illegal immigrants will be accepted in Chicago as a valid form of identification to register to vote.

The CityKey will be a government-issued photo identification card available to all Chicago residents regardless of immigration status, criminal record, housing status, or gender identity, according to the city clerk’s website.

State Board of Elections spokesman Matt Dietrich says the final call on what documents to accept rests with local officials.

“There are 109 local election authorities in Illinois,” Dietrich said. “They’re the ones who actually handle the registration, the checking of IDs, and keeping the documentation. We maintain an electronic database of voter registrations that we get from them.”

Dietrich says there is no state requirement to prove citizenship while registering to vote. He’s not expecting a surge in potential voter fraud cases because the process will remain the same.

“When you go to register to vote, you do check a box that attests to your citizenship,” Dietrich said. “You are signing a legal document that says, ‘Yes, I am a citizen.’ But no one who registers to vote is required to bring in, for example, a birth certificate or other proof of citizenship. That’s something that you check the box, and you attest to it.”

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