An interesting thing happens when you cast your vote in Guilford County this time around.

The election worker takes your now required ID – for most people a driver’s license – looks at it, and then asks you, “What’s your address?”

 It’s a little strange because, the worker is staring right at the address on the ID, but it doesn’t suffice for you to say, “It’s on the card.”  The poll worker and North Carolina election law require that you say it out loud, just as you stated your full name to get the process started.

This is the first widespread election in Guilford County where voters are required to show an ID to vote, but that ID doesn’t mean you can avoid saying your name and address out loud.

Guilford County Board of Elections Director Charlie Collicutt said this week that the requirement of stating your address is in the law as an added layer of protection against voter fraud.

For years, Collicutt has pointed out that when someone has to say their name out loud at a polling place, it’s possible a bystander within earshot could hear the name and say, “Wait a minute – that’s not Fred Grandy.  I know Fred Grandy.”

As for having to state your address – even though the poll worker is looking right at it – it’s also a measure of protection.  That’s because there’s an off chance that someone using a fake ID might not have taken the time to memorize the address on the ID before presenting it.

It’s essentially the same trick bouncers use at bars when they suspect someone of using a fake ID. The bouncer asks, “When’s your birthday?”

While many intelligent youngsters using a fake ID have memorized the date stated on it, it’s actually quite surprising how many underage teens have gotten denied bar entry because they didn’t think to learn the information on the card.