Pantsless Progressive

Thelma Mitchell cleaned this governor’s office for his entire term. She has been a fixture at the State Capitol for more than 30 years, yet this year she was told ‘you’re no longer allowed to vote.’

I ain’t missed a governor’s election since (Frank) Clement got to be the governor,’ said Mitchell.

The 93-year-old Mitchell voted for the first time in 1931, soon after women gained the right to vote in the United States.

'It meant a lot to me,' said Mitchell.

Mitchell worked as a maid cleaning the State Capitol, specifically the governor’s office.

This week Mitchell found out her old state ID with her picture on it is no longer enough to qualify her to vote.

'When he told me I may be in this country illegally, I said I've been over here all my life,' said Mitchell.

The state’s new voter ID law means Mitchell now needs a birth certificate to get a new picture ID.

Mitchell was born in Stevenson, Ala., in 1918. She was delivered by a midwife and has never had a birth certificate. Her niece is not sure one even exists anymore.

'She's worked here 30 years,' said niece Beverly Jones. 'I mean, she is 93. What more would they want?'

Longtime state employee may be blocked from voting

Notes

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