Republicans 2012 Road Map To Victory – Voter Suppression

Leading up to the wave of state and national Republican victories in 2010, they were campaigning on Jobs, Jobs, Jobs. They were going to be the party that would turn around this economy by passing legislation to create jobs. Unfortunately, their constituents have found that has turned out not to be case. 

The bills they have passed have focused on women’s rights, union busting, cutting taxes for the high income earners as well as eliminating education funding and cutting Pell Grants, instating draconian immigration policies that harken back to the civil rights era and Jim Crow laws, and ending entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security that benefit the middle and lower classes. 

Yet believe it or not these are not the most controversial laws that have been implemented. In states that have Republican majorities in both houses and governorship, they have been passing a record number of laws that roll back voting rights that are geared to make it harder for minorities, college students, elderly, and poor to vote. They have passed voter ID legislation, cut back or completely ended early voting and same day registration as well as early registration drives on Sundays at local churches.  

Because of the 2008 election in which Obama was able to win many states that have traditionally gone to Republicans, their plan to take back the White House, maintain control of the House, and win control of the Senate, is to make it much more difficult for people who traditionally vote Democratic. Juxtaposed with the fact that Americans are fighting in other countries to promote democracy, the trajectory Republicans are sending our country down is one of plutocracy that will leave a large percentage of our population unable to participate in our elections. 

I have compiled a list of states that have either successfully passed voter suppression legislation, have legislation pending, or have been defeated. 

MAINE 
Maine passed legislation to eliminate election day registration* and restrict absentee voting. In addition, legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  

WISCONSIN  
Wisconsin passed legislation to require voters to show a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot and to shorten the early voting period.  

IOWA  
Iowa’s governor issued an executive order making it nearly impossible for people with past felony convictions to ever regain their voting rights. In addition, legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  

OHIO  
Ohio passed broad voter suppression legislation that restricts absentee and early voting, among other things. In addition, legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  

WEST VIRGINIA  
West Virginia passed legislation to shorten the early voting period.  

MISSOURI  
An initiative that would remove key voting protections from the state constitution and open the door to a voter ID law is slated to appear on the 2012 ballot, though the validity of the ballot initiative is being challenged by the ACLU. Legislation to require voter ID (pending approval of the constitutional amendment) was vetoed by the governor.  In vetoing the voter ID legislation, Governor Nixon saidthat the bill ‘imposes unnecessary burdens on senior citizens and persons with disabilities, for example, who do not have a government-issued photo ID, with no guarantee that, in the end, their vote will count.’  

KANSAS  
Kansas passed legislation to require proof of citizenship to register to vote and a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot.  

TEXAS  
Texas passed legislation requiring voters to show a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot. Because of Texas’ troubling history of voter suppression, any changes in the state’s elections laws are subject to approval — or ‘pre-clearance’ — by the Department of Justice under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  

TENNESSEE  
Tennessee passed legislation to require voters to show a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot. The state also passed legislation to require proof of citizenship from certain registered voters and to shorten the early voting period.  

ALABAMA  
Alabama passed legislation to require proof of citizenship to register to vote and a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot. Because of Alabama’s troubling history of voter suppression, any changes in the state’s elections laws are subject to approval — or ‘pre-clearance’ — by the Department of Justice under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. 

GEORGIA  
Georgia passed legislation to shorten the early voting period.  

SOUTH CAROLINA  
South Carolina passed legislation requiring voters to show a government-issued photo ID to cast a ballot. Because of South Carolina’s troubling history of voter suppression, any changes in the state’s elections laws are subject to approval — or ‘pre-clearance’ — by the Department of Justice under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  

FLORIDA  
Florida passed broad voter suppression legislation that restricts voter registration, early voting and more. Because of Florida’s troubling history of voter suppression, some counties in the state are covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act and changes to the state’s elections laws that affect those counties are subject to approval — or ‘pre-clearance’ — by the Department of Justice. The ACLU is asking the federal government to object to this discriminatory new law. We?re also suing to prevent Florida from implementing the law before it?s pre-cleared. Also in 2011, Florida’s governor and his cabinet — acting as the Board of Executive Clemency — adopted a policy change that makes it nearly impossible for people with past felony convictions to ever regain their voting rights. This voting ban affects an estimated one million Floridians. 

PENNSYLVANIA  
Legislation to require photo ID to vote is pending.  

NORTH CAROLINA    
Legislation to require photo ID to vote is pending. Though the legislation was vetoed by Governor Perdue, the legislature could vote to override her veto. In vetoing the voter ID legislation, Governor Perdue said ‘The right to choose our leaders is among the most precious freedoms we have — both as Americans and North Carolinians. North Carolinians who are eligible to vote have a constitutionally guaranteed right to cast their ballots, and no one should put up obstacles to citizens exercising that right…There was a time in North Carolina history when the right to vote was enjoyed only by some citizens rather than by all. That time is past, and we should not revisit it.’ In addition, legislation ending same day registration*, shortening early voting and eliminating Sunday voting was defeated.  

MONTANA  
Legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  In vetoing the voter ID legislation, Governor Schweitzer saidthat such ID requirements ‘would create an unacceptable and unnecessary burden on many elderly voters, low-income voters, disabled voters and students…[and] interfere with fundamental rights of Montana citizens byimposing new and unnecessary regulations.’ Governor Schweitzer also vetoed legislation that would have eliminated election day registration*.  

COLORADO  
Legislation to require photo ID and (in certain circumstances) proof of citizenship to vote was defeated. 

MINNESOTA  
Legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  In vetoing the voter ID legislation, Governor Dayton said‘The right to vote is embedded in both the United States and Minnesota Constitutions. In accordance with my oath to uphold both of these foundational documents, it is my duty as Governor to ensure every eligible Minnesota voter is able to exercise this fundamental right and does not face barriers to doing so.’ 

ARKANSAS  
Legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  

VIRGINIA 
Legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated. 

NEW HAMPSHIRE  
Legislation to require photo ID to vote was defeated.  In vetoing the voter ID legislation, Governor Lynch said‘The right to vote is a fundamental right that is guaranteed to all citizens of this State under the United States and New Hampshire Constitutions. An eligible voter who goes to the polls to vote on Election Day should be able to have his or her vote count on Election Day. SB 129 creates a real risk that New Hampshire voters will be denied their right to vote.’  

Millions of Americans don’t have government-issued photo ID, including disproportionate numbers of African-American, elderly, disabled and student voters. And despite a lack of evidence that ID requirements will prevent fraud, voter ID requirements were ultimately enacted in 7 states this session, with 2 more still pending. 

The history of our nation is characterized by a gradual expansion of voting rights. These discriminatory restrictions suppress the vote and turn back the clock.

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9 responses to “Republicans 2012 Road Map To Victory – Voter Suppression

  1. Lets recap. Anyone should be allowed to vote, no matter what. But if they do vote, they have to vote your way.

    • I agree that everyone has a right to vote, however, when laws are enacted to purposefully disenfranchise a certain portion of our population it is taking a step back for democracy.

  2. All of these laws have been brought up by Republicans, who claim this will “stop voter fraud,” despite the fact that George W. Bush’s Justice Department, according to court records and interviews, found scant evidence that widespread voter fraud has ever been a problem (NY Times). Republicans know that, in sheer numbers, Democrats can crush the Republicans in a national election as long as they show up to vote. This is an effort to block people from voting. Republicans have been using these dirty tricks for decades, despite being reprimanded repeatedly by the Federal Election Committee.

  3. I would argue that the independents are who will decide elections for many years to come. Democrats by themselves cannot win unless they get a majority of the independent vote. Furthermore I can’t understand why a photo ID is such a problem for any group. We don’t have elections every year so there is plenty of time to acquire one. Maybe the rest of the country is different but here in California the hot bed of liberalism one still needs a photo ID for many transactions other than voting; does that mean they are disenfranchised as well? Elections mean something and they need to be trusted. I would caution those of you who want to label any attempt to make the elections as fair and accurate as possible as something sinister.

  4. Soon they will want to use biometric scanning before you vote and heck let’s throw in DNA testing.

    • GOP have figured out that their policies only benefit the top tier of our society, so the only way now to win elections (other than the Tea Party idiots who have absolutely no idea what GOP are doing in D.C. and just believe what they are told IN the sounds bites on FOX) is to disenfranchise monitories and poor and students.

  5. Thank you for your research.

  6. Very important! Not only do we have to watch national law makers, but we must watch state and local. Beware! They are gutting your states.

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