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In my last post, I listed some of the advantages the GOP seems to have. I stand by that. We progressives need to know what we are up against.

We hope that in 2012, there is a larger turn-out and that young people will come to the rescue of progressivism and our very capable president, Barack Obama.

Republicans must be worrying that this could happen. They have been busy doing what they can to hold down turn-out and suppress voter registration.

By May, 2011, eight states had voter I.D. Laws, and thirty others were considering them. Universally, the Republicans who sponsored them said the laws were intended to stem an avalanche of voter fraud. Thiw was the justification offered by Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, whose state had one case of voter fraud in the last six years.  It is estimated that the Kansas law will disenfranchise 620, 000 voters. It was crafted to strip college students of the vote. In addition to a photo ID, students were required to have their birth certificates.  The Texas law rejects university Ids, but permits anyone to vote who has a handgun licenses.

21,000,000 people across the country lack photo Ids. That includes 25% of otherwise eligible blacks, 18%  of the young, and 15% of the poor.
In Florida, the legislature has limited early voting perhaps because the early voting ther has had a strong Democratic tilt. The effort to suppress voter registration also targeted those trying to register as members of third parties. Groups registering those people would be required to present the thired party forms to the state in 48 hours. Such legislation would also cramp the style of groups trying to register voters across the board because they would have to sort out those forms and process them immediately.

All these vote suppression measures were encouraged by the Helping Americans Vote Act of 2002. For a time it actually subsidized efforts to suppress the vote. Look for the GOP to find some way to resume these subsidies.

Its disgusting when one of our two parties is so opposed to democracy!

Amaerican Legislative Exchange Council ( ALEC), a right-non profit is behind the renewed efforts to pass this voter suppression legislation. It has developed a model bill and has worked hard to get state legislatures to pass it.

In addition, it has model legislation being considered in 14 legislatures that would make it difficult for the federal EPA to operate in those states.

It also offers model legislation on guns, tort reform and immigration. Russell Pearce, president of the Arizona state senate, is tied to its immigration positions. In 2007, the Anti-Defamation League documented the Neo Nazi affiliation of this white supremacist. A private prison operating form has worked with him on his anti-immigrant legislation. One wonders what that firm stands to gain.

ALEC ws founded in 1973 byvPaul Weyrich and others. Former Congressman Roy Lukens was an early leader. He was convicted in 1990 of paying a 16 year old girl for sex and he later went to prison for taking a bribe. Another early leader was Woody Jenkins of Louisiana, who got into trouble over innacurate Federal Election Commission disclosure forms. He tried to conceal purchasing a mailing list from Klan leader DAvid Duke.

Section 501(c)(3) says that a condition for being tax exempt is that an organization cannot be an action organization and "it may not attempt to influence legislation...."

ALEC collects membership fees from individuals and also receives money from ExonMobil, Koch Industries, AT&T, Wall Mart Stores, and other corporate interests.

The money ALEC spends on vote suppression legislation could have a much greater impact than the tens of millions rights elements will spend on advertizing in the 2012 election.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Spell check is your friend. (0+ / 0-)

      Also, what's wrong with allowing people to vote with a handgun license?

      •  Cut The Spell Check Crap (0+ / 0-)

        The subject is more important than not using spellcheck.  

        Anyhow, I've been saying since the Republicons took control in January that they will supress voters in 2012.  We need to combat this and I think many of the laws enacted on a state level will be sent to the Supreme Court and the question is will there be sufficient time for the court to hear this case.  As an example, I see someone wrote that forcing a potential voter to produce a photo id which they have to pay for can be construed as a poll tax.  Will the SCOTUS listen and vote on this BEFORE the 2012 elections?  

      •  Skewing of the voting pool, when student (0+ / 0-)

        University ID and the like are not allowed. The assumption of hand gun licensing as a valid method is that most people who have one will vote conservative, given the posture of the NRA and the like, so they should be encouraged and facilitated but not so when it comes to seniors, students, lower income folk who might not the next time out, and a number of whom  have and get photo id  but from from sources which Rs do not accept, such as students at state colleges.

        A handgun license in a vacuum is not a problem when it is one of many kinds of state ID issued and used, but is a real problem when some state photo ID is accepted and the rest is not, on a pick and choose basis,  and when voters whose lives don't include photo ID at all, such as seniors, are excluded in toto.

        I remember when the criminal notion was better let ten criminals out than putting one innocent person in.  The R version of this is cutting thousands if not millions of voters out of voting whose only issue is not have a particular form of ID, rather than the 'avalanche' of voter fraud in Kansas, one such event in six years.

  •  No surprise (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Otteray Scribe

    I'm surprised some of these states just don't fill in the GOP nominee for you before handing out the ballot.

    "People should not be afraid of their government; governments should be afraid of their people." --V

    by MikeTheLiberal on Mon May 09, 2011 at 10:51:19 AM PDT

  •  Any state (0+ / 0-)

    that requires voter ID must provide IDs for free. Otherwise, it's a poll tax and therefore explicitly unconstitutional.

    Besides, I believe everyone should have a government ID. Not having one holds you back in many ways than just voting.

    People panic too much on this site.

    by thematt523 on Mon May 09, 2011 at 12:41:00 PM PDT

  •  So we deal (0+ / 0-)

    Maybe this means that our coalition is too fragile and should depend on people who are not so easily turned away.

    Also, voter suppression only works if an election is close. If the political climate is good for Dems in 2012, voter IDs won't matter.

    People panic too much on this site.

    by thematt523 on Mon May 09, 2011 at 12:42:27 PM PDT

  •  Our response: grassroots organizing and GOTV (0+ / 0-)

    Well said, Big Chuck

    In PA, there is already HB 934 before the State House and Senate -- both controlled by Republicans as is the Governorship -- that provided voter identification legislation aim to make it difficult for minorities and college students to vote ... Moreover, in Florida, where GOP now controls practically all State political institutions, they are considering a law that will make it very difficult for activists to be involved and help in voter registration efforts.  They will be requiring that prospective volunteers must undertake training, be issued certificates and licenses for conducting registration drives and institutes large fines if the completed registration forms are not turned to the state election offices within 48 hours of been signed and dated.  

    Besides doing our best to expose the malice and intentions of these laws to disenfranchise portions of the electorate and contest in local and state courts, the main thing we can do is again mobilize and organize.  Re-ignite our grassroots organizations that played such and important role in the 2008 campaign.  Attract volunteers and start again to knock on doors, make phone calls and attend protests and rallies !!!

    The infrastructure in place for the 2008 campaign to support the President (OFA in 2008, called Obamafor2012 now) is already gearing up, reconstituting its lists of 12 million e-mail contacts, reconnecting with past volunteers and gearing up for the 2012 battle.  2011 will be the year of preparation and reconnection ... This time e-mail, facebook, and twitter networking will be used to their full potential and the database lists and access to them are already been re-activated, new contacts are added, old contacts are met on person by person basis in interviews and urged to get involved  !!!  The BATTLE has started !!!

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