IN CASE you missed it, more wins against the continual efforts by the right to disenfranchise voters.
First, a word from Bill Clinton on voting rights.
Taken together, such measures could significantly dampen the Democratic turnout next year – perhaps enough to shift the outcome in favor of the GOP. “One of the most pervasive political movements going on outside Washington today is the disciplined, passionate, determined effort of Republican governors and legislators to keep most of you from voting next time,” Bill Clinton told a group of student activists in July. “Why is all of this going on? This is not rocket science. They are trying to make the 2012 electorate look more like the 2010 electorate than the 2008 electorate” – a reference to the dominance of the Tea Party last year, compared to the millions of students and minorities who turned out for Obama. “There has never been in my lifetime, since we got rid of the poll tax and all the Jim Crow burdens on voting, the determined effort to limit the franchise that we see today.” – The GOP War on Voting, by Ari Berman [Rolling Stone]
In Ohio, from Rick Hasen, in Obama for America v. Husted, the federal district court granted a preliminary injunction “enjoining the state from enforcing a new law barring early voting on the weekend before election day,” in legal lingo.
The court’s specific order reads: “IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that in-person early voting IS RESTORED on the three days immediately preceding Election Day for all eligible Ohio voters. And specifically, for the purposes of the 2012 General Election, this Order restores in-person early voting to all eligible Ohio voters on Saturday, November 3, 2012; Sunday, November 4, 2012; and Monday, November 5, 2012. This Court anticipates that Defendant Secretary of State will direct all Ohio elections boards to maintain a specific, consistent schedule on those three days, in keeping with his earlier directive that only by doing so can he ensure that Ohio’s election process is “uniform, accessible for all, fair, and secure.’”
Hasen isn’t sure whether this will be appealed to the Sixth Circuit.
Now out of Texas, more reporting rrom Ari Berman.
On Tuesday, a federal court in Washington found that Texas’s redistricting maps violated Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act and were “enacted with discriminatory purpose.” On Thursday a separate three-judge federal court panel in Washington unanimously found that Texas’s voter ID law also violated Section 5 by discriminating against minority voters.
From the court document:
According to undisputed U.S. Census data, the poverty rate in Texas is 25.8% for Hispanics and 23.3% for African Americans, compared to just 8.8% for whites. This means that the burdens of obtaining [voter ID] will almost certainly fall more heavily on minorities, a concern well recognized by those who work in minority communities.
We haven’t even begun to discuss voter disenfranchisement after a criminal conviction.
What’s required for voting in your state is important to know beforehand to make sure you can vote.