Click here to see a PDF copy of the order setting the trial.
Secretary of State Karen Handel hopes to implement the law, which requires a valid photo ID to vote in person, for special elections set for Sept. 18.
Opponents, including Common Cause, the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) and the League of Women Voters have asked the court to block enforcement of the Voter ID law, asserting it makes
it difficult for minorities to vote.
While testimony is expected to conclude today, no date has been announced as to when presiding Judge Harold L. Murphy will issue a decision.
Wednesday, the morning session was dominated by the plaintiffs lead attorney Emmet Bondurant and Handel sparring about technicalities.
Bondurant began with an attempt to have Handel say she was not aware of any in-person voter fraud. Handel said while she was not aware of that, she would not directly deal with such complaints.
Attempting to poke holes in the Voter ID law, former Common Cause head Bondurant offered examples of ways to fraudulently vote in person or by absentee ballot.
Handel grudgingly said Bondurants schemes might work, but
she called them far fetched.
Handels deputy, Robert Simms, was cross-examined about his efforts as head of voter education, in particular on his strategy and the content and placement of information.
Simms, before being appointed as deputy secretary of state, worked with Handels campaign.
In her campaign, direct mail information was examined by an outside consultant before being distributed. Simms said this step was not taken for the voter information campaign but added his in-house staff was sufficient in this case.
Plaintiffs noted that letters were sent to potential Georgia voters informing them that they need a photo ID to cast their ballots in person but did not tell those voters how to obtain a photo ID.
Pressed on why that information was not included in the letters, Simms answered, I dont know.
Radio advertisements by the state seemed unusually placed, Rome attorney Ed Hine said, adding they were played during traffic reports.
Youre trying to reach people who dont have a drivers license and youre running traffic spots? Hine asked Simms.
Bertha B. Young, 78, of Rome also took the stand, Wednesday. Young, a voter with no ID and no transportation, said she did not know of the lawsuit until recently.
Plaintiffs said the photo ID requirement directly affects
Young testified she has no car and a trip to the registrar takes an hour-each-way trip on a bus. However, the defense emphasized she has family members who could take her to get an ID or to cast an absentee ballot. These same family members currently transport her frequently, they noted.
On the issue of voting-by-mail, NAACP state president
Edward DuBose testified many minorities feel comfortable only when voting in person.
People are afraid, DuBose said. We already suspect our vote doesnt count. Getting there and putting it in the box is a tangible experience. As far as putting it in the mail, were afraid.
As of the end of July, 526 voter identification cards had been issued in the 22 counties with special elections. More than 73,000 voters in those areas have been identified as not having a valid drivers license.