December 4, 2009

Hard data about politicization of the DOJ under Bush

Posted in DOJ, Elections, politics, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights, Voting Rights Act tagged , , , , at 11:01 pm by bluebanshee

There was  no  mention of the GOP’s favorite boogeymen, ACORN and the Black Panthers in a recently released report on the Bush Civil Rights Division of the DOJ.  Instead, the report focused on the Bush administration’s disinclination to actively pursue the recommendations of career DOJ  attorneys.  Take a look at this one egregious example:  http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/03/us/politics/03rights.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper

When the Bush administration ran the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department, career lawyers wanted to look into accusations that officials in one state had illegally intimidated blacks during a voter-fraud investigation.

But division supervisors refused to “approve further contact with state authorities on this matter,” according to a new report by the Government Accountability Office auditing the activities of the division from 2001 to 2007. Read the rest of this entry »

November 3, 2008

Obama Camp Video Warns Against GOP Voter Suppression (VIDEO)

Posted in 2008 election, Barack Obama, Democrats, Elections, Uncategorized, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , at 3:46 pm by bluebanshee

This is must-see TV.

September 27, 2008

Anatomy of Voter Caging — 2008 McCain Style

Posted in 2008 election, bogus absentee ballot mailings, Elections, John McCain voter caging, voter registration, voter suppression, voting tagged , , , , at 2:39 pm by bluebanshee

Because the Republican party has a long inglorious history of voter suppression  (the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Rehnquist got his start politically as a GOP operative working to keep Democrats from voting in Arizona!) it should come as no surprise that they have gotten ever more sophisticated at it.  Admittedly their attempts in 2000 and 2004 were effective to some extent but very transparent.  Now they pretend to help you vote while ensuring that your vote will be thrown away.

Here’s how it works, step by step.  And if you should happen to be the recipient of one of these McCain mailings, call your local elections office  ASAP and verify that you are still registered to vote — and if tell the local officials about the mailing — you will be ensuring that your voter registration is current and performing a public service by letting the elections officials know what is going on. Read the rest of this entry »

September 14, 2008

Massive voter caging by McCain campaign?

Posted in 2008 election, bogus absentee ballot mailings, Elections, politics, voter caging, voter registration, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , , at 5:45 pm by bluebanshee

From state after state come reports of massive mailings by the McCain campaign of absentee ballot requests that contain confusing, misleading or simply wrong information.  Is the McCain campaign merely incompetent?  Or is it engaged in a massive effort to create a database of voters to challenge at the polls?  Is the McCain campaign orchestrating a voter caging campaign on a grand scale?

Given the track record of the GOP in Florida in 2000 there is no reason to give McCain and the Republicans the benefit of the doubt this time around.  Greg Palast has  provided extensive documentation of their success in denying the right to vote to thousands of legitimate voters.  Go to http://www.gregpalast.com and read all about it if you have any doubts.  So let’s assume that the mailings of absentee ballot requests to voters in swing states who did not request them is simply a new weapon in the Republican voter suppression arsenal.

How widespread is this?  So far reports have come in from VA, OH, CO, NC, PA, FL, NM, WI, OR, CA and MN.  Here’s a sampling of the info available so far. Read the rest of this entry »

Jim Crow rises from the grave as ‘Jim Crawford’

Posted in 2008 election, Crawford v Marion County Board of Elections, Elections, politics, Voter ID, voter registration, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , , , , , , at 10:08 am by bluebanshee

We all thought/hoped that Jim Crow was buried once and for all with the passage of the 1965 Voting RIghts Act and subsequent court decisions affirming the right to vote without undue burdens being placed on voter.  But it looks like there is a new incarnation of the Southern voter suppression known as Jim Crow.  This time around it is being tagged ‘Jim Crawford’ after a notorious U.S. Supreme Court decision in Crawford v. Marion County (Indiana) Election Board.

In a recent Newsweek article Jonathan Alter describes the persistent effort by Republicans to keep blocs of likely Democratic voters from casting a ballot.   http://www.newsweek.com/id/158392

…white Republicans in some areas will keep eligible blacks from voting by requiring driver’s licenses. Not only is this new-fangled discrimination constitutional, it’s spreading.

GOP proponents of the move say they are merely trying to reduce voter fraud. But while occasional efforts to stuff ballot boxes through phony absentee voting still surface, the incidence of individual vote fraud—voting when you aren’t eligible—is virtually non-existent, as “The Truth About Vote Fraud,” a study by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University, clearly shows. In other words, the problem Republicans claim they want to combat with increased ID requirements doesn’t exist. Meanwhile, those ID hurdles facing individuals do nothing to stop the organized insiders who still try to game the system.

The motive here is political, not racial. Republicans aren’t bigots like the Jim Crow segregationists. But they know that increased turnout in poor, black neighborhoods is good for Democrats. In that sense, the effort to suppress voting still amounts to the practical equivalent of racism. Read the rest of this entry »

September 1, 2008

Operation chaos for voters — registration drive runs amok in 23 states

Posted in 2008 election, Elections, politics, voter registration, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , at 11:06 am by bluebanshee

Courtesy of my colleague and friend in North Carolina, Joyce McCloy, comes this dire warning about a voter registration drive by a group called Women’s Voices Women’s Vote (WVWV) that is wreaking havoc in every state that they are targeting.  So far 23 states have borne the brunt of WVWV’s efforts.  One state  election calls their mailings “purposefully deceptive” and vows to pursue legal means to stop them in that state.

Where does WVWV get their mailing list that they send registration forms to people who have been dead for over 4 years, or to elementary school age children, or to EAC Chair Rosemary Rodriguez? Will WVWV make robo calls again in KY, NC and other states?

There’s no word yet on the NC Atty Gen’s investigation into the April robo calls in NC.  Will WVWV confuse voters during North Carolina’s early voting/same day registration period?

They’re back -Women’s Voices Women Vote registration drive sows confusion

The DC non profit “Women’s Voices Women Vote” is at it again confusing voters & burying election officials in unneccesary paperwork. WVWV has even mailed voter registration forms to 6 & 14 yr olds, dead persons, registered voters, even the Chairman of the EAC – the federal agency that overseas elections. One way to disenfranchise voters is to “gum up” the system that enfranchises them. Read the rest of this entry »

July 28, 2008

What impact will displaced voters have on the 2008 election?

Posted in 2008 election, displaced voters, Elections, Voter ID, voter registration, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , , , , , at 10:07 pm by bluebanshee

Overlooked in the discussions of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae and the bursting of the housing bubble is the plight of these formerly stable homeowners when it comes to being able to vote in the upcoming Presidential election.

The numbers of those who have lost their homes just this year is staggering.  Almost a million homes lost in the first six months of this year:

Foreclosures are up 120%. Some 220,000 homes were lost to repossession in the last quarter, and another 739,714 entered foreclosure in the first quarter. That’s one in every 171 American homes involved in what Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson euphemistically calls the “housing correction”….    http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2008/7/28/142127/083 Read the rest of this entry »

July 13, 2008

VA treats disabled vets like second-class citizens

Posted in Elections, John Kerry, politics, Veterans Administration policy on voter registration, Vets + voting, voter registration, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , , at 5:13 pm by bluebanshee

Those who have been wounded in service to their country deserve better.  The Veterans’ Administration has decreed that voter registration drives may not be conducted in VA facilities.  The VA is putting unnecessary barriers between veterans and their right to vote. At any given time there may be 100,000 vets living in VA facilities — and the number is growing as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drag on.

Who more than our wounded warriors deserves to have their right to exercise the franchise?  Who indeed?  These vets have put their lives on the line and now the VA says that voter registration activities would “interfere with” delivery of services at VA facilities.

Connecticut Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz,  expresses the frustration of many Americans when hearing of the VA policy against voter registration drives.

“The practice of banning voter registration drives at veterans facilities is a slap in the face to people who have served, put their lives on the line and sacrificed the most for our fundamental freedoms,” Connecticut Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz, a Democrat, said in a Friday [July 12] news conference. http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080712/NEWS/80712006/-1/rss Read the rest of this entry »

June 19, 2008

‘I was working for the Sith lords:’ fired U.S. Attorney David Iglesias

Posted in Daily Show, David Iglesias, DOJ, Elections, politics, Uncategorized, voter fraud, voter suppression, voting, Voting Rights tagged , , at 12:46 am by bluebanshee

Because he refused to prosecute bogus “voter fraud” cases in New Mexico, U.S. Attorney David Iglesias was fired by the Bush Administration. A dyed-in-wool Republican, Iglesias was disillusioned by the politization of the DOJ under John Ashcroft and Alberto Gonzales.

In a recent appearance on Comedy Central’s Daily Show with Jon Stewart Iglesias won audience applause by referencing characters in Star Wars movies:

“I thought I was working with the Jedi Knights and I was working for the Sith Lords.”

The video is from Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, broadcast June 16, 2008. Find it here: http://rawstory.com/news08/2008/06/17/fired-us-attorney-i-was-working-for-the-sith-lords/

June 18, 2008

The votes not counted

Posted in Barack Obama, Elections, paper ballots, politics, voter fraud, Voter ID, voter suppression, voting, voting machines, Voting Rights tagged , , , , , at 10:13 pm by bluebanshee

Every election cycle in the U.S. there are votes that never get counted –but not because of computer glitches on paperless voting machines, as if often assumed. The computer glitches happen and no paper trail is there to give silent evidence of the missing votes. Much energy has been devoted to replacing paperless voting machines with systems that have a voter verified paper record without also considering the other source of missing votes.

What am I talking about? What other type of missing vote is there besides the ones lost inside the electronic world of computerized voting machines? The answer, of course is that the other type of votes that never get counted are the ones that never get cast. Tragically millions of votes are never cast in jurisdictions across America each election cycle for a wide variety of reasons –partisan dirty tricks, voter suppression, voter intimidation, purged voting rolls, misinformation campaigns targeted at certain groups of voters, or simply voting machine shortages in inner city precincts. It is these uncounted votes that never show up in the winning (or losing) margin but in close races can mean the difference between victory or defeat. Read the rest of this entry »

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