All Articles Tagged "voter intimidation"
By Charlotte Young
It appears Florida Gov. Rick Scott is a fan of the days when discriminatory voting practices were in place to discourage African Americans from voting because he recently signed into law a bill that blatantly disenfranchises those who are black and poor.
First, his new law has cut early voting days from 15 to eight. Those who move to another country are prohibited from changing their addresses at the polls—such a stipulation would affect college students and working poor people who move a lot. Thus, their ballots will be cast as provisional ballots, and studies show these ballots tend to be cast out. The worst part of Scott’s new law is that third party groups who register voters must turn in all new registration forms in only two days compared to the previously allowed 10 days.
Thank God for Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which requires certain states (such as Florida) to get a pre-clearance from the Department of Justice before changing voting practices.
Besides Scott’s new law, Rev. Jesse Jackson is calling attention to how proposed state laws requiring photo identification for voters, along with Congressional reapportionment and state legislation that restricts the bargaining power of labor unions, will all weaken the black vote.
The requirement for state-issued photo IDs at the polls means that millions may not vote in the 2012 election because they don’t have licenses or birth certificates and cannot afford to get them, said Jackson. He added that there are 5.5 million blacks in America who are of legal driving age but do not have a driver’s license.
According to BlackAmericaWeb, there are several states considering photo IDs, including Ohio, Wisconsin, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Montana, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas.
Now, it is true that congressional reapportionment and labor union bargaining power may create a setback to the black community and should be addressed quickly. But what’s so wrong with requiring a photo ID? There comes a time when we need to stop coddling people and tell them, for instance, to get a photo ID. How else could people make credit purchases, get on planes, file taxes and get into nightclubs without a valid ID?
Rev. Jesse Jackson, please take that issue up with your supporters.
(Politico) — Attorney General Eric Holder finally got fed up Tuesday with claims that the Justice Department went easy in a voting rights case against members of the New Black Panther Party because they are African American. Holder’s frustration over the criticism became evident during a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing as Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas) accused the Justice Department of failing to cooperate with a Civil Rights Commission investigation into the handling of the 2008 incident in which Black Panthers in intimidating outfits and wielding a club stood outside a polling place in Philadelphia. The Attorney General seemed to take personal offense at a comment Culberson read in which former Democratic activist Bartle Bull called the incident the most serious act of voter intimidation he had witnessed in his career.
(Washington Post) — The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, who has done a great deal to frame the conservative narrative on the New Black Panther story, isirate that Attorney General Eric Holder recently dismissed the right’s charges about the Panther voter intimidation case as “simply not supported by the facts.” Rubin writes:
Does he actually believe this to be the case, having been sheltered from testimony, news reports, and a report by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights? Or, does he imagine that he can simply bluster his way through the next two years without addressing the mound of evidence against his department? After all, his own Justice Department is conducting two internal investigations — one by the Office of Professional Responsibility and one by the Inspector General. If there is nothing here, then certainly Holder’s own employees would have long ago closed the books on their inquiries.
(The Grio) — The goal on Election Day is to ensure that every eligible voter is able to successfully cast their ballot. Here, theGrio identifies some of the most common problems that voters encounter at the polls and discuss solutions to help overcome the barriers.
1)Verify the location of your polling place before venturing out on Election Day, especially if you are a first time voter. To verify your polling place, check your registration card or certificate, call your local election official or go to apolling place locator for your state.