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Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


The Alabama Senate Race May Have Already Been Decided

By SCOTT DOUGLASDEC. 11, 2017

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — The Senate election in Alabama on Tuesday is not just about the choice between Doug Jones and Roy Moore. It’s also about a voter suppression campaign that may well sway the result of a close race.

In 2011, Alabama lawmakers passed a photo ID law, ostensibly to combat voter fraud. But “voter impersonation” at polling places virtually never happens. The truth is that the lawmakers wanted to keep black and Latino voters from the ballot box. We know this because they’ve always been clear about their intentions.

A state senator who had tried for over a decade to get the bill into law, told The Huntsville Times that a photo ID law would undermine Alabama’s “black power structure.” In The Montgomery Advertiser, he said that the absence of an ID law “benefits black elected leaders.”

The bill’s sponsors were even caught on tape devising a plan to depress the turnout of black voters — whom they called “aborigines” and “illiterates” who would ride “[sign in to see URL] buses” to the polls — in the 2010 midterm election by keeping a gambling referendum off the ballot. Gambling is popular among black voters in Alabama, so they thought if it had remained on the ballot, black voters would show up to vote in droves.

Photo ID laws may seem innocuous. For many of us, it might be easy to take a few hours off from work, drive to the nearest department of motor vehicles office, wait in line, take some tests, hand over $40 and leave with a driver’s license that we can use to vote. But this requires resources that many rural, low-income people around the country simply do not have.

I work with poor, black Alabamians. Many of them don’t have cars or driver’s licenses and make under $10,000 a year. They cannot afford to pay someone to drive them to the motor vehicles or registrar’s office, which is often miles away.

Photo ID laws are written to make it difficult for people like them to vote. A study by Zoltan Hajnal, a political scientist at the University of California, San Diego, comparing the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections, found that the voter ID law kept black voters from the polls. After Alabama implemented its strict voter ID law, turnout in its most racially diverse counties declined by almost 5 percentage points, which is even more than the drop in diverse counties in other states.

In Alabama, an estimated 118,000 registered voters do not have a photo ID they can use to vote. Black and Latino voters are nearly twice as likely as white voters to lack such documentation.
In other words, Alabama’s law is nothing but a naked attempt to suppress the voting rights of people of color. That’s why my organization, Greater Birmingham Ministries, with the help of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, has sued the state to block the photo ID law. The case will go to trial in February.

When the law was passed in 2011, it so reeked of discrimination that state politicians didn’t bother to submit it to the federal government for approval, as Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act required. For decades, Section 5 had acted as a crucial prophylactic, stopping discriminatory voting laws before any election. Instead the ID law remained dormant until June 2013, when the Supreme Court’s devastating ruling in Shelby County v. Holder suspended Section 5’s preclearance requirement.

It left states like Alabama, Texas and North Carolina free to test the limits of voter suppression. Indeed, after the decision, Alabama announced the photo ID law would go into effect without federal approval.

The photo ID law isn’t the only obstacle in front of Alabama voters. My organization is also challenging the state’s felon disfranchisement law, which affects an estimated 250,000 people here — 15 percent of Alabama’s black voting age population, but fewer than five percent of whites.

The law bars people with felonies of “moral turpitude” from voting. For decades such crimes were ill defined, but once included things like miscegenation. A new law narrowed the list of disfranchising crimes, but a federal judge ruled this summer that the state is not required to inform people with convictions who couldn’t vote under the old law that they may now register to vote.

We’ve made too much progress to tolerate this. Federal courts must reject the voter ID law. Congress needs to restore the Voting Rights Act to its full strength. Nothing less than our democracy is at stake.

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12/12/2017, 11:55 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


quote:

“voter impersonation” at polling places virtually never happens.



I have heard this claim many many times and I find it hard to believe, I know that in the UK voter personation is endemic.

and although photo ID is not required in most places (it is in Northern Ireland) there are measures in place at every poling stating to counter personation.

In NI where photo ID is required there is a definitive list of what is and is not valid (EU passport, EU drivers licence, government issued travel pass) if you dont have one of those documents and wish to vote then you must apply for an Electoral Identity Card which is free but requires that you provide a passport style photograph.

I suspect that the reason that there is no personation in the US is that no one looks for it - look for it and Im sure you will find it.

there is also a problem with people registering to vote at multiple addresses


Nassau County, New York in 2013 a few hundred people voted who were registered as deceased

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12/12/2017, 5:18 pm Link to this post PM mais oui Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


According to all sources except the far right, it is still rare but there are thousands that are dead that just haven't been taken off the list. It is seriously looked at and they are often caught. Republicans have long used voter fraud as being out of control, because they do everything they can to make sure they win, including changing boundaries to suit their vote.
12/12/2017, 6:19 pm Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


"In Alabama, an estimated 118,000 registered voters do not have a photo ID they can use to vote. Black and Latino voters are nearly twice as likely as white voters to lack such documentation. "

Now, before the results come in is the time for me say I hope that even white voters in Alabama understand that Judge Roy Moore, a law unto himself east of the Mississippi, is not qualified to serve in Congress because he is self appointed Ayatollah of the American "christian" Taliban, so morally incapable of defending and preserving the US Constitution given that he believes in some odd version of "christian" S'hia law where the Constitution is not the highest law of the land.

" Moore told the rally on Monday: “I want to make America great again with President Trump. I want America great, but I want America good, and she can’t be good until we go back to God.”

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12/12/2017, 6:41 pm Link to this post PM Geezess Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


When we moved to iowa in 1990 two of the first things Becky and i did was change our driver’s license and to register to vote. When we registered to vote we were assured that they would notify the proper authorities in San Francisco that we were now residing in Fayette County, iowa where were registered to vote. Fot the next couple of years Becky (who has always registered as a Democrat) continued to receive garbage mail from the California Democratic Party. And then almost a full 4 years after we had left California she receives a big envelope forwarded from our old address (I thought they stopped forwarding mail after a year). It was from the City and County of San Francisco, and was a summons to Jury Duty. Well both Becky and the Clerk of Court here in Fayette County got on the phone with the people in San Francisco. And did there best to convinve them Becky was now a born again farm wife, living with her husband, three children, and 200 hogs on a farm in NE Iowa. They then forwarded copies of pertenant in information. And we never [sign in to see URL] back from them. But it was a couple of years before we stopped receiving garbage from the California Democrats - now properly addressed to RR 2, West Union, Iowa. Becky wondered if she was still on the voter rolls in SF. My question was more cynical. How many times had she “voted” in San Francisco since 1990?

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12/12/2017, 7:06 pm Link to this post PM GoHawk Blog
 
mais oui Profile
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


quote:

In Alabama, an estimated 118,000 registered voters do not have a photo ID they can use to vote. Black and Latino voters are nearly twice as likely as white voters to lack such documentation



that may be true but it isnt an insurmountable [sign in to see URL] them ID!!!!

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12/12/2017, 7:41 pm Link to this post PM mais oui Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


Great point.
I have duel citizenship and in my other Nation being given a photo ID card is part of the voter registration process, and yet, ironically, you can still vote without it, provided a poll worker vouches for your identity.

Oh, and just after you vote you are required by law to dip your forefinger into indelible, for a about 36 hours, anyway, ink, so you can not vote again if your finger is purple.
12/12/2017, 9:50 pm Link to this post PM Geezess Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


My husband has been summoned several times to jury and he is not a citizen.
12/12/2017, 10:37 pm Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


I guess the voter ID laws didn't decide the race because the Democrat won.
12/13/2017, 4:26 am Link to this post PM gopqed Blog
 
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Re: Voter ID laws may decide Alabama race


There is denial, for you.

Jones was elected by a surprising small margin because of conscience resistance to the GOP's anti democracy voter suppression policies.

Get out the vote !!!

12/15/2017, 4:55 pm Link to this post PM Geezess Blog
 


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