Under Mr. Manchin’s version, states would be allowed to require photo identification, but they would have to define ID broadly — to include student IDs, hunting licenses, conceal-carry gun permits, and any form of government paper that includes the voter’s name, like a utility bill.
If voters cannot provide such ID, they could cast a provisional ballot, subject to signature verification against their voter registration card. Even if the signature cannot be verified, the voter would be given 10 days to return to a voting administrator with a valid ID.
Some Black lawmakers — whom Democratic leaders have looked to for advice on the voting bill — have examined the Manchin proposal and have generally blessed it. Representative Joe Neguse, Democrat of Colorado, said Wednesday that coming to a compromise on individual provisions like the voter ID section was important, but that ultimately, none of it would pass without changes to the Senate’s legislative filibuster.
“For me, the larger debate that is probably more critical is reforming the filibuster,” he said.
Senator Angus King, an independent from Maine, said Wednesday that the next step would be nailing down a compromise that Mr. Manchin will accept, then looking for Republican support. Ms. Klobuchar promised to take her committee on the road next week, when the Senate begins a two-week recess, to try to add political pressure.
And many voting rights and civil rights groups, which have been stalwart supporters of the bill in its entirety, are signaling flexibility on voter ID, reiterating their previous support for such measures within the right confines.
“Basic voter ID has been a part of voting since the beginning, and both Democrats and Republicans agree that people should provide proof of who they are before casting ballots,” Ms. Abrams, the former Democratic candidate for governor in Georgia, wrote in her book “Our Time Is Now” last year. “What has changed in recent years is the type of identification required and the difficulty or expense of securing the necessary documents.” She made similar comments last week on CNN.
After former President Donald J. Trump returned in recent months to making false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him, Republican lawmakers in many states have marched ahead to pass laws making it harder to vote and change how elections are run, frustrating Democrats and even some election officials in their own party.
- A Key Topic: The rules and procedures of elections have become central issues in American politics. As of May 14, lawmakers had passed 22 new laws in 14 states to make the process of voting more difficult, according to the Brennan Center for Justice, a research institute.
- The Basic Measures: The restrictions vary by state but can include limiting the use of ballot drop boxes, adding identification requirements for voters requesting absentee ballots, and doing away with local laws that allow automatic registration for absentee voting.
- More Extreme Measures: Some measures go beyond altering how one votes, including tweaking Electoral College and judicial election rules, clamping down on citizen-led ballot initiatives, and outlawing private donations that provide resources for administering elections.
- Pushback: This Republican effort has led Democrats in Congress to find a way to pass federal voting laws. A sweeping voting rights bill passed the House in March, but faces difficult obstacles in the Senate, including from Joe Manchin III, Democrat of West Virginia. Republicans have remained united against the proposal and even if the bill became law, it would most likely face steep legal challenges.
- Florida: Measures here include limiting the use of drop boxes, adding more identification requirements for absentee ballots, requiring voters to request an absentee ballot for each election, limiting who could collect and drop off ballots, and further empowering partisan observers during the ballot-counting process.
- Texas: Texas Democrats successfully blocked the state’s expansive voting bill, known as S.B. 7, in a late-night walkout and are starting a major statewide registration program focused on racially diverse communities. But Republicans in the state have pledged to return in a special session and pass a similar voting bill. S.B. 7 included new restrictions on absentee voting; granted broad new autonomy and authority to partisan poll watchers; escalated punishments for mistakes or offenses by election officials; and banned both drive-through voting and 24-hour voting.
- Other States: Arizona’s Republican-controlled Legislature passed a bill that would limit the distribution of mail ballots. The bill, which includes removing voters from the state’s Permanent Early Voting List if they do not cast a ballot at least once every two years, may be only the first in a series of voting restrictions to be enacted there. Georgia Republicans in March enacted far-reaching new voting laws that limit ballot drop-boxes and make the distribution of water within certain boundaries of a polling station a misdemeanor. And Iowa has imposed new limits, including reducing the period for early voting and in-person voting hours on Election Day.
Election officials have echoed her arguments, saying that any new identification requirements set in a federal voting law should come with dedicated sources of funding to help states provide outreach to voters who may be affected.