Attorney General Eric Holder deviated from his prepared remarks during a speech before the NAACP on Tuesday and called voter ID laws “poll taxes.”
“Under the proposed law, concealed handgun licenses would be acceptable forms of photo ID, but student IDs would not,” Holder said, referring specifically to the voter ID law passed in Texas. “Many of those without IDs would have to travel great distances to get them, and some would struggle to pay for the documents they might need to obtain them. We call those poll taxes.”
That last line was not part of Holder’s prepared remarks released to the press.
Holder has been very critical of voter ID laws in the past, but this appears to be the first time he’s gone as far as to compare them to the Jim Crow-era effort to purposefully disenfranchise African-Americans.The NAACP passed an emergency resolution supporting Holder, who has been under attack by Republicans for his handling of the investigation of the botched ATF operation known as Fast and Furious.
Video of Holder’s remarks below.