November 3, 2008
This is must-see TV.
September 27, 2008
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 »
June 18, 2008
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 »
June 4, 2008
As previously noted on this blog, the Republican party has a long history of voter suppression, dating back at least as far as William Rehnquist’s activities in Arizona, long before he ascended to the U.S. Supreme Court. We have chronicled the effort by the Bush administration to foist Hans von Spakovsky on the Federal Election commission, an effort that, fortunately for American democracy, has come to an inglorious end with von Spakovsky’s withdrawal from consideration for the post.
One of the recent GOP tactics has been to push for legislation requiring voters to show ID in order to vote. To listen to many Republicans the greatest danger to the country is voter fraud, i.e., folks casting ballots they are not entitled to. Most often the boogie man is the specter of illegal aliens voting but no proof is ever offered. Read the rest of this entry »
November 24, 2007
So now we find out that there has been a surge in applications for citizenship — a fairly predictable consequence of an impending fee increase. The backlog stands at about 1.4 million and the wait has jumped from 7 months to an estimated 16-18 months. Those eligible for citizenship rush to get their applications in before the deadline and the the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service is unable to cope. They say they hired 1500 new employees to deal with the deluge of applications but the backlog mushrooms out of control nonetheless.
Of course, once one remembers that Citizenship and Immigration is part of the Homeland Security department the pattern becomes clear — this is just another branch of the folks who have brought us color-coded security alerts and the dreadful mismanagement of the Katrina disaster. More bumbling in yet another part of Homeland (In)Security — or so it would seem on the surface.
But wait a minute — is there a more sinister pattern here? If these 1.4 million applicants have to wait 16-18 months to become citizens then they will probably not be able to vote in the 2008 presidential election. This could have a significant impact on elections in several states with high concentrations of applicants such as Florida. Read the rest of this entry »
November 7, 2007
The headline says: Tarrant County investigates bogus election flyers. But the ugly backstory is that the official-looking but phony flyers were found in a heavily Hispanic area and were aimed at suppressing minority votes. They had an official-looking seal and stated that election day had been changed to Saturday (instead of Tuesday). If a voter acted on this mis-direction they would find out that the election was over and they were out of luck.
Read all about it here in the Dallas Morning News: http://tinyurl.com/yrz6jz
There is an investigation underway but my prediction is that the culprit(s) will never be found, much less found guilty in a court of law.
Elections Administrator Steve Raborn said there’s no way to know how many fliers, which were in English and Spanish, were distributed.
“It’s discouraging if someone is trying to suppress the vote rather than encouraging people to vote,” Mr. Raborn said.
He said he was particularly disturbed that someone designed the flier to make them appear as if they came from his office. Mr. Raborn said the fliers were found in the heavily minority Rosemont and Worth Heights neighborhoods in Fort Worth. Read the rest of this entry »