Being the majority party means Republicans will get to shape Pennsylvania's political map for the next decade through legislative redistricting, but apparently that's not enough clout for some politicians.
The Republican-controlled state House has revived a long-dormant proposal to require that voters produce government-issued photo identification each time they cast a ballot.
There's no way that's going to be good for turnout among the poor, elderly, disabled, or non-driving voters, which includes many Philadelphia Democrats. Those voters are less likely to have a driver's license or similar official ID, which would be required under the measure recently given committee approval.
The bill's prime sponsor, Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R., Butler), says he's targeting voter fraud. The initiative tracks a trend in a number of GOP-controlled state capitals, where there are campaigns to tighten voting rules before the next presidential election.
The trouble with the timeworn vote-fraud refrain is that there's no evidence of polling scams even close to a scale that would justify restricting voting rights to this degree. Not only that, but the measure could cost taxpayers millions of dollars they cannot afford under a provision requiring the state to provide free photo IDs.
Given the likely price tag and the wholly unnecessary risk of disenfranchising so many citizens, such draconian voter-identification proposals would be as wrongheaded as they are unfair.