Voter ID Laws are Resurrecting the Spirit of Jim Crow

My Monday column was a rundown of the most insidious voter purges and Voter ID laws coming from various Republican governors. The lede is deadly serious.

If President Obama loses in November, it won’t be Super PACs or Republican lies about his record that will defeat him. It won’t be fundraising or advertising or punditry. If President Obama loses, it will almost certainly be due to Jim Crow style voter suppression and disenfranchisement. And no one is really talking about it.

Specifically, I’m referring to the Republican plot to make voting nearly impossible for low-income, working class Americans, and, therefore, disenfranchising scores of Democratic voters. There are two concurrent policies in action here: Voter ID laws and voter registration purges. Continue reading here…

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  • SlapFat

    The Obama Administration is at least suing Ohio for its termination of certain early-voting restrictions, so that’s a start. On a different note, is anyone ready for Romney to name Rob Portman as his VP? I simply wanted to ask because the most vanilla person in U.S. politics is about to get center stage.

    • bphoon

      …the most vanilla person in the U.S. politics…

      This side of Tim Pawlenty.

    • muselet

      Last night, Rachel Maddow named the four people tipped to be on Mitt Romney’s shortlist. Of the four, four are male, four three are white, four are the Republican equivalent of policy wonks, and four couldn’t excite a crowd if they lit themselves on fire. (In fairness, she did note that some Rs are still pulling for Marco Rubio.)

      The Republican ticket in 2012 is almost certainly going to look like a piece of white bread with a schmear of mayonnaise.

      –alopecia

      EDITED because I forgot one of the four was Bobby Jindal. How on Earth could I have forgotten Governor Sand Berms? *facepalm*

  • Ned F

    If I was a student from Pennsylvania attending university in say, Florida or Arizona, what would I have to do to vote? I suppose you could do the absentee ballot thing, but if I wanted to register to vote, and didn’t have a driver’s license, and student ID is unacceptable, what? Perhaps I have a PA drivers license, does that work in FL?
    Getting students to the polls is usually an uphill struggle, but faced with situations such as this, I think most would just say “screw it”. It’s not worth the effort.
    ….And another thing, it is costing PA about 10 million to implement this law. I thought we were all broke and that’s why we have to cut back on education, health care and food stamps. But voter fraud is such a crisis it has to take top spending priority. Fuckers.

    • bphoon

      I have to say, in all fairness, here in Kansas, a student ID (as long as it’s issued by the state) is sufficient ID to vote with. As the commercial being run by the SoS says, “It’s just that easy!”

      That being said, I need to point out that our Voter ID law was written by our erstwhile SoS, Kris Kobach, formerly a “professor” of law at the Liberty “University” “School” of Law and significant contributor to Arizona’s SB 1070 and Alabama’s HR 56. When the legislature was “debating” the Voter ID bill, Kobach insisted the Kansas Secure and Fair (SAFE–get it?) Elections Act was absolutely necessary in order to guard against rampant voter fraud.

      Kansas casts, on average, 1.5 million votes each Presidential election cycle. Over the past 13 years, exactly seven (yes, 7) cases of voter fraud have been prosecuted resulting in four convictions. So, of course, a Voter ID law (that just happens to risk disenfranchising predominantly Democratic voters–simply an unfortunate by-product, of course) is essential to secure “safe” and “fair” elections.

      Such transparent bullshit is what passes for governance these days in this state.