The “right” is wrong about voter suppression

The GOP’s Disgusting New Southern Strategy: Take the Vote Away from Blacks, Roll Back the Civil Rights Movement By Sher­ri­lyn IfillThe GOP’s war on vot­ing is a seri­ous attack on the fun­da­men­tal work­ings of our democracy…Instead it should be seen as part of a larger attack on polit­i­cal par­tic­i­pa­tion, with deep his­tor­i­cal roots that hark back to the dark­est days of Amer­i­can democracy.…Republican voter-suppression efforts are a sober­ing reminder that we are only half a cen­tury removed from the time when, in many states, vot­ing strength was based on race, wealth and place…This is what voter fraud really looks like, and all Amer­i­cans, not just African Amer­i­cans, stand to lose.

Why Americans Can’t Vote  What was dif­fer­ent about 2012 was that voter sup­pres­sion went from (largely) acci­den­tal to (com­pletely) inten­tional. In vir­tu­ally every state where Repub­li­cans took con­trol in the 2010 midterms, they changed the laws to make it harder for their polit­i­cal oppo­nents to vote. Most of these attempts were styled as attempts to limit “voter fraud,” a vir­tu­ally non-existent prob­lem in the United States. (A for­mer offi­cial of the Florida Repub­li­can Party recently acknowl­edged that the pur­pose of these laws was to hurt Democ­rats, not to address any real problem.)

Rig the Vote by Charles M. Blow, New York Times, Jan­u­ary 25, 2013 — If you can’t win by play­ing fair, cheat. That seems to be the plan of Repub­li­can law­mak­ers in sev­eral bat­tle­ground states that stub­bornly keep going for Democ­rats dur­ing pres­i­den­tial elec­tions. Thanks in part to ger­ry­man­der­ing, many states already have — and will con­tinue to have in the near future — Republican-controlled leg­is­la­tures…That change would heav­ily favor Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial can­di­dates — tilt­ing the vot­ing power away from cities and toward rural areas — and make it more likely that the can­di­date with the fewest votes over all would win a larger share of electoral votes.

GOP, Thomas Hobbes Rig Elections

Inside the plan to steal the election by Steven Rosenfeld, Alternet.org, August 25, 2012

Voter Suppression Is Treasonous by Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm,  HuffingtonPost.com, May 22, 2012

Calling Radicalism by Its NameEditorial, New York Times, April 3, 2012

Conservative Southern Values Revived: How a Brutal Strain of American Aristocrats Have Come to Rule America By Sara Robinson, AlterNet, June 28, 2012

Making The Election About Race By Thomas B. Edsall, New York Times, August 27, 2012  

Has America’s Stolen Election Process Finally Hit Prime Time?

Voting Rights Under Attack as GOP Seeks to Overturn Historic Civil Rights Law

The GOP’s Voter Sup­pres­sion Strategy The Nation [1] / By Ari Berman [2], Novem­ber 26, 2012 In a little-noticed yet sig­nif­i­cant devel­op­ment on elec­tion day, Min­nesota vot­ers defeated a con­sti­tu­tional amend­ment that would have required them to present a government-issued photo ID to cast a bal­lot. It was the first time vot­ers had rejected a voter ID bal­lot ini­tia­tive in any state. In May 2011, a poll showed that 80 per­cent of Min­nesotans sup­ported a photo ID law. “Nearly every­one in the state believed a photo ID was the most common-sense solu­tion to the prob­lem of voter fraud,” says Dan McGrath, exec­u­tive direc­tor of Take Action Min­nesota, a pro­gres­sive coali­tion that led the cam­paign against the amend­ment. “We needed to reframe the issue. We decided to never say the word ‘fraud.’ Instead we would only talk about the cost, com­pli­ca­tions and con­se­quences of the amend­ment.” Accord­ing to the coali­tion, the photo ID law would have dis­en­fran­chised eli­gi­ble vot­ers (includ­ing mem­bers of the mil­i­tary and seniors) dumped an unfunded man­date on coun­ties and imper­iled same-day voter reg­is­tra­tion. On elec­tion day, 52 per­cent of Min­nesotans opposed the amendment. The amendment’s sur­pris­ing defeat has ram­i­fi­ca­tions beyond Min­nesota. “There’s been an assump­tion of polit­i­cal will for restrict­ing the right to vote,” says McGrath. “No, there’s not.” The amend­ment back­fired on the GOP. “Voter ID did not drive the con­ser­v­a­tive base to turn out in the way that Repub­li­cans thought it would,” adds McGrath. “Instead, it actu­ally inspired pro­gres­sive vot­ers, who felt under siege, to fight stronger and turn out in higher num­bers.The minor­ity vote nearly dou­bled in the state, com­pared with 2008. Min­nesota was a micro­cosm of the national fail­ure of the GOP’s voter sup­pres­sion strategy.

After the 2010 elec­tion, in more than a dozen states Repub­li­cans passed vot­ing restric­tions aimed at reduc­ing the turnout of Obama’s “coali­tion of the ascendant”—young vot­ers, African-Americans and His­pan­ics. The strat­egy didn’t work as intended. Ten major restric­tive vot­ing laws were blocked in court over the past year, and turnout among young, black and Latino vot­ers increased as a share of the elec­torate in 2012 com­pared with 2008. The youth vote rose from 18 to 19 per­cent, and the minor­ity vote increased from 26 to 28 per­cent; both went heav­ily for Obama.

A back­lash against voter sup­pres­sion added to this increased youth and minor­ity turnout. “When they went after big mama’s vot­ing rights, they made all of us mad,” said the Rev. Tony Minor, Ohio coor­di­na­tor of the African Amer­i­can Min­is­ters Lead­er­ship Coun­cil. The black vote rose in Florida, North Car­olina, Ohio and Vir­ginia, while the Latino vote grew in Florida, Col­orado and Nevada. “There were huge orga­niz­ing efforts in the black, His­panic and Asian com­mu­ni­ties, more than there would’ve been, as a direct result of the voter sup­pres­sion efforts,” says Matt Bar­reto, co-founder of Latino Deci­sions, a Latino polling and research firm.

In late Sep­tem­ber, Project New Amer­ica, a Den­ver center-left research group, tested more than thirty mes­sages on “spo­radic, less likely vot­ers who lean Demo­c­ra­tic” (which included young, black and His­panic vot­ers) to see what would moti­vate them to vote. “One of the most pow­er­ful mes­sages across many dif­fer­ent demo­graph­ics was remind­ing peo­ple that their votes were impor­tant to counter the extrem­ists who are kick­ing peo­ple off of voter rolls,” the group wrote in a post-election memo.

 

Elections – November 4, 2014

G.O.P., Though Deeply Split, Has Election Edge, Poll Shows By JONATHAN MARTIN and MEGAN THEE-BRENAN, New York Times FEB. 26, 2014 excerpt – Republicans are in a stronger position than Democrats for this year’s midterm elections, benefiting from the support of self-described independents, even though the party itself is deeply divided and most Americans agree more with Democratic policy positions… Democrats too are held in low regard over all by a public fed up with Washington’s failure to compromise, and they have failed so far to energize a broader segment of the population. …

Dwindling Christian Right Turns Into Cornered Animal, Lashes Out at Civil Rights and Democracy By CJ Werleman, AlterNet, February 26, 2014   - Like a cornered animal, which turns instinctively to confront pursuing predators, the Christian Right, knowing it represents the views of an ever shrinking number of Americans, is engaged in an existential fight to the deathto transform America’s secular democracy into a tyrannical theocracy…These “religious freedom” bills did not arrive here overnight; they are three decades in the making…When Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson established the Christian Right (aka the Moral Majority) in 1979, no serious political commentator believed they could play a significant role in electoral politics…Long story short, the Christian Right swept Ronald Reagan into the White House in 1980. The Sarasota Journal wrote as much on Feb 9, 1981: “The merging of the political right with the religious right has taken the country by surprise.” It’s now 2014, and the most intellectually and morally stunted segment of American society continues to take this nation by surprise.

The Christian Right has not only moved from the fringes to become the main strain of the Republican Party; it is the Republican Partywant the freedom to discriminate against individuals they claim the Bible finds abhorrent….To achieve this, the instrument of choice is nullification. It is nullification of the federal government that weds theocrats together with libertarians and the neo-confederate movement…American history and constitutional jurisprudence has consistently ruled against them.”…The Christian Right’s ideology drives virtually all social policy debate within the Republican Party, whether it’s immigration, women’s reproductive rights, the death penalty, or same-sex marriage…While the Christian Right is becoming the dwindling minority, it remains an existential threat to civil rights, secularism and our democratic values. It’s a threat fueled by a seemingly unlimited supply of campaign finance, and a rabid base that believes it’s fighting for its place in a 21st-century world…

The “right” is wrong about government

Republican Deficit-Hawk Hypocrites by Sen. Bernie Sanders

Why the Government Shutdown Is Unbiblical 

The Radical Christian Right and the War on Government

6 Right-Wing Zealots and the Crazy Ideas Behind the Most Outrageous Republican Platform Ever

Meet The Radical Republicans Chairing Important House Committees

Ron Paul’s Farewell Speech in Congress Lays Bare His Hatred for “Pure Democracy,” and Love of Oligarchy

The Religious Right and The Republican Platform

Washington Has Been Stopped in Its Tracks by Republican Tea Party Types, and It’s Destroying the Country

Why Ultra-Conservatives Like the Sequester

Teaching People to Hate Their Own Govt. Is at the Core of the Project to Destroy the Middle Class

The Biggest Engine of Economic Growth? 8 Ways Taxpayers and the Government Are Necessary to Capitalism

Numbers, Analysis Show 30 Years of Failed US Economic Policy

The Uh-Ohs: A Decade of Conservative Failure by Terrance Heath

The “right” wing takeover of the Republican Party

G.O.P. Shift Moves Center Far to Right

‘Republicanity’—The GOP Transformation is Nearly Complete

The Rise of the Regressive Right and the Reawakening of America by Robert Reich

Robert Gates on the GOP’s Breakdown and Failure at “The Basic Functions of Government” By Steve Benen

The Five Strands of Conservatism: Why the GOP is Unraveling

The real conservative scandal

The “right” wing’s class wars

Redistributing wealth upward by Harold Meyerson

The 1 percent played Tea Party for suckers 

The Biggest “Takers” and Societal Parasites Are the Rich, Not the Working Class and Poor

The Empathy Ceiling: The Rich Are Different — And Not In a Good Way, Studies Suggest

The GOP Is in Total Denial About America’s Soaring Poverty Problems

The Non Zero-Sum Society: How the Rich Are Destroying the US Economy

The Republicans’ War on the Poor

Wall Street CEOs are the ‘Faces of Class Warfare’

US Poverty Rate Reaching 50-Year High by Common Dreams staff

Why Is Poverty, Inequality Growing?

The “right” wing’s culture wars including sex

How the Right Has Turned Everything Into a Culture War — And Why That’s Terrible for Our Democracy

U.S. to Grow Grayer, More Diverse, Minorities Will Be Majority by 2042, Census Bureau Says By N.C. Aizenman

Why are “Wedge Issues” Essential to Republican Rule?

Us vs Them: A Simple Recipe to Prevent Strong Society from Forming By James Rohrer

Conservative Bullying Has Made America Into a Broken, Dysfunctional Family: But There Are Ways to Regain Our Well-Being

How Patriarchal, Christian Backlash Politics Have Only Become More Vicious

The Strange Sexual Obsessions Driving the Tea Party Movement by David Rosen

Why Patriarchal Men Are Utterly Petrified of Birth Control — And Why We’ll Still Be Fighting About it 100 Years From Now

The “right” is WRONG about race

Conservative Southern Values Revived: How a Brutal Strain of American Aristocrats Have Come to Rule America

Disrespect, Race and Obama

Fear of a Black President 

How Obama’s Election Drove the American Right Insane

Tea Party Movement Returns Christian Right to Its Racist Past

The GOP’s Disgusting New Southern Strategy: Take the Vote Away from Blacks, Roll Back the Civil Rights Movement

The Long, Sordid History of the American Right and Racism

The Persistence of Racial Resentment

Tim Wise on White Resentment in a Multiracial Society

The “right” is WRONG: America is NOT a Christian nation

A New Religious America — How a “Christian Country” Has Become the World’s Most Reli­giously Diverse Nation

America Does Not Have a Religious Identity

America Is Not a Christian Nation and Never Has Been: Why Is the Right Obsessed With Pushing a Revisionist History?

Conservatives Want America to be a “Christian Nation” –  Here’s What Would That Would Actually Look Like 

Freedom of and From Religion by Bill Moyers

Holy Writ — Tea Party evangelists claim the Constitution as their sacred text. Why that’s wrong

The Truth About Religion in America: The Founders Loathed Superstition and We Were Never a Christian Nation

The Ungodly Constitution: How the Founders Ensured America Would Not Be a Christian Nation