Alabama GOP chairman admits to making phony ID he presented to poll workers
A sign points the way toward the voting booths as voting commences in North Carolina's U.S. presidential primary election at Sharon Presbyterian Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S. on March 15, 2016. REUTERS/Chris Keane/File Photo

Alabama's top-ranking Republican Party official made up his own state identification card he used to cast a vote in the 2020 election.

John Wahl, the state's GOP chairman, presented what appeared to be a state-issued card identifying him as a media representative for State Auditor Jim Zeigler, who later admitted to AL.com that he gave Wahl permission to create the badge.

“I had asked John Wahl to help the State Auditor’s Office with news media work in a volunteer press secretary role,” Zeigler told columnist Kyle Whitmire. “The office does not have a staffer that does this. John agreed to assist us pro bono. Later, John Wahl informed me that vendors who disseminate e-mail news releases would require some type of press credential. He said that should be no problem to provide. That was the first and last I heard about the press credential, and the e-mail releases were distributed.”

Wahl's extended family, which practices Anabaptism, has religious concerns about being photographed and fears that biometric identification is the biblically foretold mark of the beast, and they have run into problems voting as a result.

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The family has tried to use an exemption to the law allowing voter to cast ballots if two poll workers sign an affidavit that positively identifies them, although some poll workers have refused to do that, and John Wahl has used his homemade ID to vote in at least two recent elections in apparent violation of state law.

“It does not meet the standard of any voter ID requirements listed under 17-9-30,” said Alabama secretary of state John Merrill said, citing the state code for voter ID.

Wahl had previously denied making the ID but finally admitting to making it with Zeigler.

“I took that to Jim Ziegler,” he said. “We talked about it and at that point, he authorized the creation of a press credential for my position as a press secretary.”

“We used a printer to print the ID,” Wahl added. “We used a third party — a third party printer to print the ID."

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