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House Bill 532 — Identification cards

House Bill 532 — Identification cards

Parrish Miller
February 14, 2024

Bill Description: House Bill 532 would repeal the six-month waiting period to obtain the state’s no-fee identification card, which is available primarily for voting purposes. 

Rating: -1

Does it violate the principle of equal protection under the law? Examples include laws which discriminate or differentiate based on age, gender, or religion, or which apply laws, regulations, rules, or penalties differently based on such characteristics. Conversely, does it restore or protect the principle of equal protection under the law?

Idaho law contains a provision allowing "any individual eighteen (18) years of age or older" to obtain a "four (4) year no-fee identification card" if the individual "indicates on the application that an identification card is needed to comply with voter registration or voting requirements." There is no requirement that the individual actually use the ID card to register to vote, however. Filling in the requisite checkbox on the application is enough. 

The only other limit on receiving this no-fee ID card is a requirement that the individual "has not possessed a current driver's license in the preceding six (6) months."

House Bill 532 would amend Section 49-2444, Idaho Code, to repeal this six-month waiting period. 

Providing no-fee ID cards effectively forces those who pay for driver's licenses and ID cards to subsidize ID cards for those who claim they need a free ID for voting purposes. Requiring some people to pay for IDs while others get them for free is not treating everyone equally under the law, and removing the waiting period could encourage more people to apply for them.


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