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Palast writes: "Black folk, the elderly, students, poor whites blocked from registering and voting - a federal judge didn't think it was all that coincidental."

Retired nuns Jeanne Gallagher and Pauline Kelly talk about voter identification for this year's election. (photo: Butch Comegys)
Retired nuns Jeanne Gallagher and Pauline Kelly talk about voter identification for this year's election. (photo: Butch Comegys)

So These Ten Nuns Walk Into a...

By Greg Palast, The Progressive

28 September 12


o These Ten Nuns Walk Into a . . .

Stop me if you heard this one. See, these ten nuns walk into a polling station in Indiana and the guy in charge says, “Whoa, Sisters! What do think you’re doing?”

“Voting,” says Sister Mary.

“Well, not here, ladies; not without your ID!”

He demanded their driver’s licenses, but the ten quite elderly Sisters of the Holy Cross, including a ninety-eight-year-old, had long ago given up cruising.

“Scram, Sis!” said the man, and kicked their habits right out of the polling station.

I may not have gotten the dialogue exactly right, but I got the gist of it and the facts: the ten nuns who’d been voting at that station were booted out in 2008, just after the state of Indiana’s Republican legislature imposed new voter ID laws.

The reason for nixing the nuns? To stop voter identity theft.

There wasn’t exactly a voter identity crime wave. In fact, despite no photo ID requirement, there wasn’t a single known case of false identity voting in the state in over one hundred years.

About four hundred thousand voters (9 percent of Indiana’s electorate) are African American. Nearly one in five (18.1 percent) lack the ID needed to vote, according to Matt Barreto of the University of Washington. That’s twice the number of whites lacking ID.

Therefore, as many as seventy-two thousand black voters will get the boot when they show up to vote this November.

Coincidentally, that’s three times Barack Obama’s victory margin in that state in 2008. Coincidentally.

And who are the white folk lacking ID? The elderly, like the sisters, and students like Angela Hiss and Allyson Miller, whose official state IDs don’t list their dorm room addresses and so can’t be used to vote.

Black folk, the elderly, students, poor whites blocked from registering and voting—a federal judge didn’t think it was all that coincidental. Justice Terence Evans could see a pattern: “The Indiana voter photo ID law is a not-too- thinly veiled attempt to discourage election-day turnout by certain folks believed to skew Democratic.”

But Supreme Court Justice is blind.

The Indiana law does provide a voter the chance to obtain an ID from government offices. The average voter’s distance to the office is seventeen miles. By definition, the folks that need the ID don’t drive. And the ninety-eight-year-old is pretty darn slow in her walker.

A lawyer for Indiana voters told me that the average bus trip back and forth, requiring two changes, takes an entire work day. They tested it. But Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia ruled that the law was fair and provided “equal protection” to all voters because “seventeen miles is seventeen miles for the rich and the poor.”

Our investigative team decided to check that assumption. Justice Scalia drives a black BMW. No kidding. What he meant to say is that whether a poor person or a rich person is driving a BMW, it takes the same time. And whether the BMW is black or white doesn’t matter either.

With Supreme Court blessings, voter ID laws are taking the nation by storm, or storm troops.

Apparently, the idea came to Karl Rove while buying his pampers. He told the Republican National Lawyers Association, “I go the grocery store and I want to cash a check to pay for my groceries, I have to show a little bit of ID. [So, why not when] it comes to the most sacred thing in our democracy?”

(Actually, Karl, you don’t have to show ID to swallow the Eucharist or matzo. But if by “most sacred thing” in our democracy you mean making donations to American Crossroads, you don’t need ID for that anymore either. If you mean voting is sacred, then it shouldn’t be dependent on taking a driving test, should it?)

Santiago Juarez sees some truth in Rove’s remarks. I met with Santiago in Espanola, New Mexico, where he was running a registration drive among low-riders, the young Mexican Americans who cruise the street in hopping, bopping, neon-lit Chevys.

He says, “And who’s going to give these kids a credit card?” Of course, you can always get ID from a state office . . . if you already have ID.”

Voting-rights lawyer John Boyd, who works for both parties, is alarmed by the “thousands and thousands” of poor people in each state that will lose their vote because of new ID laws.

“I don’t have any doubt this could decide the election,” he told me. “People don’t understand the enormity of this.”

People don’t. But Karl does.

And so does the Brennan Center. The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School brings together America’s most prestigious scholars in the field of voting rights who are widely ignored because of their unquestioned expertise. The Brennan Center reports that the ID laws are racist, ageist, classist, and the stupidest way to stop “fraud.”

Here’s the Brennan Center breakdown of those without government photo ID:

  • 6.0 million seniors;

  • 5.5 million African Americans;

  • 8.1 million Hispanics;

  • 4.5 million eighteen- to twenty-four-year olds;

  • 15 percent voters with household income under $35,000 a year.

Now, don’t add them up because there’s a lot of double-counting here. “Poor,” “black,” and “young” go together like “stop” and “frisk.”

But let’s cut to the chase: the draconian ID law and other voting and registration restrictions passed in just the year before the 2012 election, according to the Brennan Center, are going to cost five million voters to lose their civil rights.

Overwhelmingly, the changes were made in twelve “battleground” states, with the most radical exclusion laws adopted in Florida and Wisconsin. The cheese-chewer state will require government-issued IDs to vote. But the IDs issued by the state itself to University of Wisconsin students won’t be accepted. That’s okay because, as a New Hampshire legislator, hoping to emulate Wisconsin, points out, “Kids, you know, just vote liberal.”

Using a formula provided by the Brennan Center, we can calculate that 97,850 student voters were barred, turned away, blocked, challenged, or given provisional ballots (left uncounted) on recall Election Day in June. No U.S. paper listed Wisconsin as a “swing” state that month. Well, it swung.

Altogether, the 2012 changes in Wisconsin law were sufficient alone to account for the victory of Republican Governor Scott Walker in staving off a recall vote in June 2012. Walker did have the popular support of $31 million (versus $4 million raised by his Democratic opponent).

I note that Wisconsin voter registrations show a drop of 107,000 in the first six months of 2011 before a mass attack on the list by the GOP-controlled legislature. To get the latest figures is suspiciously difficult. We do know that registrations have been rejected en masse, in part by “matching” requirements used to verify registrations.

Despite the fact that Wisconsin has no known history of fictional or dead people actually voting, the cost to real, live voters is devastating. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+98 # fredboy 2012-09-28 11:11
And they call it America...
+57 # NanFan 2012-09-28 11:49
Quoting fredboy:
And they call it America...

No, they call it "freedom"... NOT!

-13 # goodsensecynic 2012-09-29 11:25
Actually, they call it "fair."
+33 # goodsensecynic 2012-09-29 13:02
Just in case the respondent who turned thumbs down on my comment didn't "get it," I was being ironic. "Fair" is how Scalia's opinion was characterized. In fact, it is anything but!
+2 # RLF 2012-10-02 06:50
Ah!...Scalia... that mental giant!
0 # soularddave 2012-10-19 16:24
No longer. Now its just the plain ol'"United States". At this rate, we might not even be that for long.

Disgusting! Sad, too, like losing an old friend.
+101 # Onterryo 2012-09-28 11:40
They should call in representatives from countries like Angola, the Congo, Sudan and Nigeria to monitor the election to ensure the process and the election was conducted fairly and without fraud. It would be interesting to see their report on the GOP at federal and stage level and the corrupt SCOTUS. "People who live in glass houses...."
+53 # Glen 2012-09-28 14:28
How about calling in monitors from every country in which the U.S. has deposed leaders, installed their own, and caused deaths by the thousands.

Time for some payback.
+147 # maddave 2012-09-28 11:51
Still ANOTHER reason to work and vote for Obama and Democratic Legislators. The next President will name fully 200 Federal Court judges; "several" Appellate Judges; and at least one Supreme Court Justice. The ramifications are obvious. We THe People are currently down 5 - 4 in the Supreme Court, and if Romney becomes President, those numbers could quickly change to down 6 - 3 and--- if both Breyer AND Ginsberg leave, worse: down 7 -2 and we'll lhave to live with that majority for the next 30 years!
P. S. Even if Obama is elected, he needs the House & 60 solid Democrats in the Senate! You know what you have to do - So do it!
+8 # dovelane1 2012-09-30 03:01
I keep waiting for someone in the Democratic party to bring up the issue of getting Thomas off the supreme court, for any number of good reasons.
+1 # RLF 2012-10-02 06:53
Maybe Obama would do better but, he, as a constitutional lawyer, passed the NDAA and has an AG that only prosecutes whistle blowers. I'm not sure he is the best person to make appointments even if he is all we have.
+86 # FIRSTNORN1 2012-09-28 11:53
And they say that Afghanistan has a corrupt government!
+35 # MEBrowning 2012-09-28 11:54
It gets worse ...
0 # soularddave 2012-10-19 16:36
Great info in that link! It reveals who, exactly, controls the software in those damn voting machines.

Go look at it.
+91 # cenglish10 2012-09-28 11:57
We need the United Nations to take charge in this Banana Republic. Thank you for taking us back to a time when women and minorities couldnt vote and even when those less than 21 couldnt vote. Disenfranchisin g American. Puts a new spin on American Exception-alism . If you dont vote Republican, you dont vote.
+90 # Robert B 2012-09-28 12:01
What do you think Republicans would say if the Democratic Party tried to block Republicans from voting in a place like Phoenix? Why, one wonders, isn't Eric Holder charging these jerks with a blatant violation of the Voting Rights Act? Are ya there, Eric? Somebody should poke him to see if he still has a pulse.
+39 # Third_stone 2012-09-28 13:19
The justice department has been very busy on this matter. Apparently they have almost driven back the requirement in Pennsylvania. With the number of wrongs done to us recently, they are spread thin. There is an investigation in progress about Bain's calling their fees capital gains in order to evade taxes, and there are a number of bank investigations in progress, although not the big ones we want. They also have men working on the LIBOR price fixing, which will tie up a lot of investigators.
+45 # panhead49 2012-09-28 14:42
Quoting Robert B:
What do you think Republicans would say if the Democratic Party tried to block Republicans from voting in a place like Phoenix? Why, one wonders, isn't Eric Holder charging these jerks with a blatant violation of the Voting Rights Act? Are ya there, Eric? Somebody should poke him to see if he still has a pulse.

Nancy Pelosi was on Big Ed Shultz' show this a.m., she had contacted the deputy AG whose domain includes violations of the Voter Rights Acts of the '65 and '93. She said if she doesn't get a call from him today, she'll be calling him tomorrow. If that isn't satisfactory, she said she'd then go to Holder. Ed pointed out that time is of the essence and she said she knows, that's why he's only got one day to respond to her.

This is a ground game - if you can help someone get what they need to get registered you have a civic duty to do so.
+23 # doneasley 2012-09-28 15:08
Quoting Robert B:
... Are ya there, Eric? Somebody should poke him to see if he still has a pulse.

Eric Holder is opposing the myriad ID laws, Robert. The TX ID law was just overturned. PA is the worst case right now, where as many as 1 Million voters could be affected, and Holder has brought suit against them. OH's ID law has been modified to roll back early voting to its original form, but the OH Sec'y of State had cut early voting back and was going to allow weekend voting for GOP jurisdictions only!!! I just moved back to OH last week, I'm registered and have a place to vote.

Bottom Line: Regressives don't believe that certain segments of the population - I'll call them the disadvantaged - should have a vote. THEY HONESTLY BELIEVE THIS! So they don't feel that there's any problem with lopping large segments of the population off the voter roles. This has been a hot topic for months now, and the shame of it is that some people aren't even aware that this discussion going on. They're going to show up on election day, and, SURPRISE, they won't be able to vote.

I believe in the Public Service Announcements (PSA's) that radio/TV stations used to do. It would be a simple thing to tell the public, "There are new Voter ID laws in your state", and whatever the details are for that particular state. DONE! (That's what the PA legislator said about Voter ID allowing Romney to win PA). DONE!
+8 # Regina 2012-09-29 12:32
There is no "belief" expressed by Republicans that can be characterized as "HONEST" -- all their "sincere" positions are lies designed to lull the naive. Their basic ideas are right out of old Dixie, and their gimmicks are in effect poll taxes. And yes, if you catch one of their adherents in an unguarded moment, you get the truth -- that these tricks are designed to deliver the presidency to the Republican candidate. They don't have to win when stealing elections is so easy.
+60 # She Cee 2012-09-28 12:02
Where Is Jimmy Carter when we need him?
+79 # margpark 2012-09-28 12:03
Tennessee has passed one of those government photo ID laws and I was struck when I renewed my driver's license this year that the photo ID is optional and costs a few dollars more. Been that way for several years so many opted for no photo. Something sort of fishy there.
+24 # Independentgal 2012-09-28 18:01
Sounds like a modern-day poll tax.
+55 # Phoenician 2012-09-28 12:04
+4 # dovelane1 2012-09-30 03:05
Aslo known as "fascism."
+59 # kasibafe 2012-09-28 12:05
Is this what Americans have fought and died for for 200 years? Win an election and the freedom to vote gone down the drain! These people should be ashamed of themselves and sent to Leavenworth. They must be desperately desperate to disfranchise Americans from the right to vote. Shame! Shame! But, freedom in America will survive, and they will find themselves being washed down the drain when the election is won by the people already in the White House.
+8 # Regina 2012-09-28 23:14
Don't bet on that salvation. Freedom didn't survive in 1930's Germany. This has all the stench of a Nazi putsch.
+87 # Old Man 2012-09-28 12:06
I call it suppression by the right-wing, an old Karl Rove trick that's being pushed. How I loath that worm. He should be in a prison.
+66 # wendy 2012-09-28 12:22
As a Pennsylvania resident for most of my entire 52 years on the planet I'm outraged to see my tax dollars used for such a ridiculous reason.
+27 # Third_stone 2012-09-28 13:05
Quoting wendy:
As a Pennsylvania resident for most of my entire 52 years on the planet I'm outraged to see my tax dollars used for such a ridiculous reason.

Of course those perpetrating it think there is nothing more important in their lives that to keep democrats from getting power.
+16 # KittatinyHawk 2012-09-28 14:37
Vote out Corbett and his punks
there are several movements getting people voting id so let us hope we have a handle on this
They better ask for my id because if they do not....they will wish they had
+18 # Doll 2012-09-28 17:31
Quoting KittatinyHawk:
Vote out Corbett and his punks
there are several movements getting people voting id so let us hope we have a handle on this
They better ask for my id because if they do not....they will wish they had

We did already, according to some analysists. We Voted for Dan Onarato, and not Corbett. We also voted for Sestak for the Senate against the Republican challenger (who officially won) This election was stolen.

It was stolen by people who want fracking throughout PA and without paying the cost of the problems they created. ergo, Corbett.

Corbett is even attempting to overthough the local Pittsburgh decision to not allow fracking in the city.
+44 # Mouna 2012-09-28 12:45
Thank you, Greg Palast, for your very effective way of making a point! Let's do a service called Let's Get You Registered. (I hope it's not too late!)
+52 # mike444 2012-09-28 12:48
Call the board of elections and see if you are registered. If you have been dropped, raise hell. Go in person to the board of elections, get the person's name in charge ask why you were dropped. Call the radio stations, especially if you are a minority - call the stations that cater to your ethnic group and complain. Call the Democrats and tell them you have been screwed in voting. Do this now, raise hell till you get to vote again, and complain as soon as possible - don't wait until election day.Do it soon.
+24 # Corvette-Bob 2012-09-28 12:51
It never fails to amaze me how the Democrats permit the Republicans to kick them around. I see why they say that the Republicans are the male party and the Democrats are the female party. While the Republicans are fighting like hell, the Democrats are trying to calm things down and trying to make peace.
+9 # Regina 2012-09-28 23:18
Corvette-Bob: Your ingrained misogyny is showing. The Republicans are BULLIES -- gender is not involved. The Democrats are SUCKERS -- no gender involved. It's way past time to quit the attribution of personality types to sex.
+40 # sapereaudeprime 2012-09-28 13:02
This country will not be safe for Democracy until the current leadership of the Republican Party, and their behind-the-scen es plutocratic puppeteers, are in prison or in forced labor work camps for the rest of their hitherto parasitic and anti-democratic lives. Wouldn't hurt to flog a few hundred of them publicly,either .
+24 # doneasley 2012-09-28 15:16
Quoting sapereaudeprime:
... Wouldn't hurt to flog a few hundred of them publicly,either.

In Singapore they CANE offenders. Remember the young American guy who threw trash on the ground there? They CANED his ass. He won't do that again. Highly appropriate for these guys too. CANE THEM PUBLICLY!!!
+49 # daddydt 2012-09-28 13:03
Disgraceful. As an idealistic young man I was so proud of my country. But no more. Shame on those cynical souls who have brought this pox upon our once-great country -- and those who had the power to stop it.... and haven't.
+41 # mdunne 2012-09-28 13:04
Have any lawyers out there considered using the 14th amendment? If these numbers are really so big, states implementing these laws should lose representation proportionately . These laws are modern-day poll taxes. If people without IDs can't vote, their voting rights are clearly being abridged.

Read Section 2 of the 14th amendment and tell me if I'm wrong: Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
+3 # bingers 2012-09-29 10:52
Great point!
+52 # Third_stone 2012-09-28 13:04
If after the election it is found that people were unlawfully denied their vote and the wrong man took power, what happens?
Bush's term was far from over when it became evident that Florida and Ohio had been rigged. The men in Ohio are in jail for their rigging. In florida the ring leader ran for office. At that point, Bush should have been removed. We need a mechanism for removing pretenders who usurp power.
+23 # BeaDeeBunker 2012-09-28 13:05
The fact that this is going on this cycle is not surprising to me. Nothing surprises me when it comes to the 'patriotic' actions of The Grand Olde Party; not since the election was stolen in 2000, with the help of that ultra patriotic Supreme Court Justice Antoni Scalia. The fact that he drives a black BMW, a foreign made automobile, is the most shocking of all. Where is his loyalty to America, and the American way. Shameful, truly shameful.

But what can you expect from that 47%er, who has a job for life, at taxpayer expense, and no worries about room and board. He can always sleep in his robe in his comfortable, taxpayer paid, high backed chair!
+44 # Susan1989 2012-09-28 13:06
This is the last gasp attempt of the wealthy, white, Christian, male members of the population to keep their power. The population is changing and they know they are a dying breed. What amazes me is that they are getting away with it so far.
+43 # tomo 2012-09-28 13:11
The irony of "bringing democracy to Afghanistan" while we do all we can to eradicate it here in America is not lost on me or my students. It's a matter of bullets and ballots. We spray bullets across Afghanistan while we deny ballots at home. The costs of bullets and drones and boots-on-the-gr ound is so expensive that it looks like soon we will have no funds for the education of our own children. Once we have eradicated education here at home, all sense of irony will disappear. Problem solved!
+29 # Archie1954 2012-09-28 13:20
Don't yopu think it's long past time to have term limits on Supreme Court Justices tenure? Individuals such as Scalia lost any pretension of intelligence or impartiality years a go and is an ongoing embarrassment. Thomas is, well you know and Kennedy should be ashamed of himself.
+30 # David Starr 2012-09-28 13:33
Quoting: "Here’s the Brennan Center breakdown of those without government photo ID:
•6.0 million seniors;
•5.5 million African Americans;
•8.1 million Hispanics;
•4.5 million eighteen- to twenty-four-yea r olds;
•15 percent voters with household income under $35,000 a year."

Un-friggin-believable. Voter IDs to stop fraud, my ass. Rove, Scalia, Walker, etc. must be either stupid or weasels. No, both, a mutation: Stupid weasels. That kind of blatant contradiction comes with the GOP territory. It's like a phoney Jekyll and a real Hyde.

These stupid weasels are obviously commiting fraud in the name of "stopping" fraud. Consciences are apparently foreign to them. Here's an utterly necessary choice: I'd rather put these bastards in jail and those with petty marijuana "violations" freed.
+1 # dovelane1 2012-09-30 03:20
The Republicans are doing exactly what they are accusing the Democrats of doing.

Blame everyone else, so as to keep everyone looking the other way. Don't pay attention to that man behind the curtain.

Stupid weasels? No, gutless cowards. They all love the lie that saves their pride, but never the unflattering truth.

So they put their (so-called) pride, and their pocketbooks, above the good of the country. Public servants? Servants to the 1% is more likely.

And the democrats doing the same, are no better. In the process of trying to avoid conflicts, it is at the point where it will be like a volcano blowing up when everything finally comes out in the open.
+24 # MainStreetMentor 2012-09-28 13:34
We … ALL of us … need to spend as much time writing letters to our elected representatives and local newspapers, as we do writing posts within this forum. Posting here is indicative of our displeasure – and that’s illuminating – but actual change MUST come from retraction, repeal and rescinding of existing voter modification laws. If the current “batch” of legislators within your area are Republican, then work very, very hard to legally remove them from office and replace them with elected officials you KNOW see voter modification laws as unconstitutiona l, and will actively move to rescind them. This is the time to make those choices and take those actions.
+30 # Rich Austin 2012-09-28 13:35
People can whine all they want about Democrats doing this or not doing that till the cows come home. Here is one thing they are not doing. They are not attempting to subvert democracy like the Republicans are. They are not trying to suppress votes.

That, in and of itself, should give even Tea Party patriots reason to a straight Democratic ticket.
+34 # WolfTotem 2012-09-28 13:44
Well then... DOESN'T America need international observers, just like every other country, to prove her elections are free and fair?

'Course not! Like Putin's Russia, WE don't need furriners stickin' their noses into OUR micro-managed democracy - the best that money can buy.
+36 # stoher9 2012-09-28 14:27
We are all besieged on a daily basis to contribute to the election of this or that politician. How about instead of contributing to pay for some political ads, further enriching the corporate media, we take our money & find someone in our precinct that has been disenfranchised by these voter suppression laws & use that money to get them an "approved" ID. This seems to me to be a better way of defeating these unAmerican, fraudulent, voter ID laws than the courts or complaining & it has the added benefit of taking money from corporate media who have downplayed this power grab from it's inception. The heck with voter registration, let's help get our already registered voters the PAPERS they need to vote. I've done 6 people in Virginia in September. It cost me $92.00 dollars. I'll do more in October. HOW ABOUT YOU!!!
+10 # eafinct 2012-09-28 19:09
GREAT THOUGHT! Let's take action now.
+10 # KittatinyHawk 2012-09-28 14:41
I would like to know where you all have been while this has been going on? There are people including Democratic Party calling and asking if you need help to get id. They also asked for help to do this Where were you all
Want Democracy then do something about it keeping it. If you can sit on here for hours than why not donate an hour a week to help your community?
Can't help than you are as much part of what Republicans want. I won't thank you for that or thumb you up for laziness
+16 # Old Uncle Dave 2012-09-28 14:53
We've got to get rid of Scalia bamn before it's too late.
0 # X Dane 2012-09-29 23:16
Thank you stoher, you are a real PATRIOT, with a heart of gold. Your idea is great.
0 # X Dane 2012-09-29 23:17
Old Uncle Dave.

GREAT IDEA.......HOW? ???
+20 # reiverpacific 2012-09-28 14:54
Well, they can't get single-party totalitarianism any other way.
This is what our fathers and grandfathers both sides of the pond fought against.
The power-seekers never rest and have no scruples.
Glad that voters in Oregon can vote by mail (of course THEY want to abolish the Post Office too).
I remember well the grand whore Katherine Harris' smug statement after all the skullduggery in declaring Florida for Dimwits in 2000, That "Democracy has worked again". THEY are the freedom-shouter s who will take all vestiges from you if you even look outside their carefully constructed slave-maker box.
+5 # aitengri 2012-09-28 15:28
Just declare the entire election "null and void", then declare a national emergency, give the Pentagon special powers to administer the resultant chaos. This would be going to the ultimate destination in one step, instead of tortuously slogging there through little mini steps, via 4 to 8 years of Republican "leadership".
+16 # SundownLF 2012-09-28 16:36
Boy, if we didn't know Scalia was a son of a bitch, this certainly proves it! ("17 miles is 17 miles, whether you're rich or poor"! I'd LOVE to see him walk ONE mile, let alone 17!)
-12 # Larry2 2012-09-28 17:57
I just don't understand the reason for all the hoopla - voting just isn't that important anyway. It doesn't really matter whose in office since the voter will have minimum influence on the process. To the politician, it is the lobbyist and the large campaign contributor that he will be working for and he'll only seek to pacify the voter during the campaign season.
+3 # maddave 2012-09-29 10:49
You know, Larry2, if your fatalist comment weren't dead on the money, I'd argue with you . . . BUT, sadly, what's You nailed it, and this is the way it will remain until we get ALL private and corporate money OUT of our election process.

+6 # m... 2012-09-28 18:07

Give that man a monocle and a pair of tall black boots..!
+16 # Linda 2012-09-28 18:22
Just a thought but how about mail in ballots ? I presume you don't need an ID to get one of them do you ?
I thankfully live in Ma. where there are no such voter ID laws ! Those of you who live where there are such laws should ask people if they need a ride to get an ID .Or as I said before help them get a mail in ballot !

I also read where Scott in FL is purging votes again after the Justice Department told him to cease with the purge after it was found many people were in fact legal citizens !
Rove is trying to do what he did for Bush ,corrupt the election process to get Romney elected because they know damn well its the only way he would win this election !If he wins we should take to the streets with pitch forks !
+10 # eafinct 2012-09-28 19:07
IN THE MEANTIME.....wh ile the the lawyers and the protesters do their work, the law are still in effect. So what are we as progressives doing to get folks the required photo ID's? Can League of Women Voters or the Dems or anybody else organize rides to the DMV to get ID's, or get mobile units to the neighborhoods?
+4 # Regina 2012-09-28 23:25
In a number of those states the DMV offices are far from urban areas, and open for very restricted hours. Anyone who thinks these laws are straight should buy the next bridge to nowhere.
+14 # socrates2 2012-09-28 19:11
"But Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia ruled that the law was fair and provided 'equal protection' to all voters because 'seventeen miles is seventeen miles for the rich and the poor'.”
The word's of Anatole France sure seem to echo Scalia's, "The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich and the poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread."
Nothing to see here, folks. Keep it moving. Just the lunatics running the place...
+9 # Peach14 2012-09-28 19:23
I would love to help get people ID'S
In fact I have written to the Obama Campaign at least twice asking how I could help. I love # stoher9's hands on approach!
Living in California where there is no voter ID law I need to find out how I can help in those states that do have these ANTI-AMERICAN, ANTI-DEMOCRATIC LAWS?
Any ideas?
+12 # Peach14 2012-09-28 19:28
We kept hearing that the Occupy Movement got bogged down because they didn't have 1 single issue to organize around.
How about now! Voter Suppression!
Talk about your reason for a REVOLUTION!!!
+8 # fhunter 2012-09-28 19:41
1. After inauguration, Obama did not start the "Pecora hearings". 2. He did not investigate the banksters. 3. While we lost our savings, college tuitions for our grandchildrens, he let the 10 million bonuses go to the banksters. 4. he did not investigate the wrong doings, criminal or incompetent, of the previous Administration. The Republican shure showed GRATITUDE.
+1 # Holmes 2012-09-28 20:05
This just makes the compulsory requirement for all voters to attend a voting both which applies in Australia seem so much more important. That and having no Federal or State based political interference in the management of the electoral rolls once the Federal Parliament has set the rules even better.
+3 # Rick Levy 2012-09-28 20:28
Why would students not have identification? Schools routinely issue student i.d.'s which include a photo and are required to be renewed each semester.
+7 # Regina 2012-09-28 23:30
The vote killers are refusing student IDs for the flimsiest of reasons -- like omission of dorm room numbers. Whatever an undesirable citizen brings, the Republico-fasci sts will diddle a way to declare it improper, incomplete, inappropriate, insufficient, ineligible,.... ...
+9 # psadave 2012-09-29 00:37
Not good enough! Gun license OK, though. That might be a clue as to which party is behind the laws.
+6 # psadave 2012-09-29 00:57
In Oregon, you send a filled out registration form at least 3 weeks before election day. You put your driver's license number OR permit number OR Oregon ID number OR if you don't have any of those the last 4 of your Social Security number. If you have none of those, provide a valid photo ID, paycheck stub, utility bill, a bank statement, a gov't document with your name and current address. Just send a copy of one of these, you don't have to go to the county elections office yourself! However, if you sign this registration form and know it to be false, you can be fined up to $125,000 and/or jailed for up to 5 years!
Then, a ballot is sent to you several weeks before election day and you fill it out and mail it back or drop off at many conveniently located boxes. NO standing in line! I have had to wait behind a few cars to put my ballot in the box, just like a mail box. I have voted in 5 other states in my life, but none as easy as Oregon.
Of course we are fortunate to live in a state where democracy rules and the GOP is not in charge. We feel very sorry for states with GOP governors and/or legislators. Maybe the rest of the country could learn something from us on the west coast. CA did have a famous GOP gov for a while, but we know how that worked out. Democracy should be easy...if you want to see voter fraud in action, Florida is a good place to look.
+5 # Texan 4 Peace 2012-09-29 01:34
As stated above, under these laws, college i.d.s are not considered "state-issued identification" (even if they're issued by a state university) and thus can't be used for voting purposes.
+6 # bingers 2012-09-29 10:58
Quoting Rick Levy:
Why would students not have identification? Schools routinely issue student i.d.'s which include a photo and are required to be renewed each semester.

Because the Republicans are aware that most college students vote Democratic and they don't allow those IDs for voting. In Texas you can't use student IDs, but you can use your gun registration or hunting license. See a pattern there?
+3 # jimmyjames 2012-09-29 08:20
If the Returdians are so worried about voter fraud, and believe half of the United States population are freeloaders, why not have people without picture ID's put their finger in indelible ink when they vote like they do to voters in Third World countries. Problem solved and everyone gets to vote!
+1 # HJ7 2012-09-29 19:29
Quoting jimmyjames:
If the Returdians are so worried about voter fraud, and believe half of the United States population are freeloaders, why not have people without picture ID's put their finger in indelible ink when they vote like they do to voters in Third World countries. Problem solved and everyone gets to vote!

This only solves the old Irish problem of "voting early and voting often," it does not solve the problem of non-citizens voting.
+5 # Colbertgp 2012-09-29 08:36
Why aren't Republicans up in arms about this? Not one court, not one Republican has been able to point to anything amounting to voter fraud. Why aren't they angry that their fellow Americans are being denied the right to vote?
+8 # opinionaire 2012-09-29 09:50
I am neither poor, not black, nor elderly; I have-and have religiously used-a state issued voter ID card, as well as a driver's license with my photo and address. I have voted in the same precinct for over twenty years, in every election and each primary. Nonetheless, my name was somehow left off the rolls for one of our relatively recent national elections. I continue to suspect that this was due to my being one of the few voters who might not vote with the majority in my precinct. My response at the time was to escalate requests to increasingly more insistent demands until I was finally permitted to vote. This is not what my Dad fought in both the Asian and European theaters in WWII to accomplish.
+7 # maddave 2012-09-29 10:57
Ex-Governor Jennifer Grandholm broke the news last night on her "War Room" about a well paid-and-organi zed RNC-financed organization that has allegedly altered or destroyed liberal/minorit y voting registration papers. She suggested that the numbers of disenfranchised voters is staggering. I expect to see more details here on RSN in the near futute.

You may have been a victim.
-7 # LWhiteford 2012-09-29 10:28
Sorry: I am 82 and worked for many years as a clerk on election day. I only get one vote and I don't want anyone who does not have the right to vote once getting another vote or someone who isn't eligible to vote to cancel my vote. If these nuns are so concerned why don't they come up with a solution for getting the I.D. for themselves. There are too many people who change addresses and can vote in both locations. Historically we have had whole elections stolen by fraudulent voting. Certainly those of us who live in Texas know about the Duval County vote that Lyndon Johnson won with the stolen ballot box. No one should be left off the roles who has right to vote nor should anyone be put on the rolls who does not have the right to vote.
+7 # bingers 2012-09-29 11:12
There have been cases of election fraud like you're talking about, but there has never been a single case of voter fraud affecting any election in our history.

There is absolutely no widespread voter fraud and there never has been. There was a study done this year that found something like .0004 fraudulent votes per 150,000 votes cast. We do know of two confirmed but unprosecuted cases of voter fraud, Ann Coulter fraudulently used her Realtor's address and Mitt Romney fraudulently used his son's unfinished basement as his address. Why aren't they in jail like the lady in Wisconsin who discovered she'd voted in the wrong polling case by accident and turned herself in. She was charged with a felony and jailed. Why isn't Mittens in prison?
0 # soularddave 2012-10-19 17:28
Quoting bingers:
. Why isn't Mittens in prison?

He OWNS the jail.
+7 # maddave 2012-09-29 12:11
Mr. Whiteford,

You say quote: Certainly those of us who live in Texas know about the Duval County vote that Lyndon Johnson won with the stolen ballot box. unquote.

You mistake the difference between "voter fraud" ---which is very rare and, statistically, has virtually no affect upon the elections' outcome--- and "election fraud" which is perpetrated by "anonymous" election officials AFTER the individual voters have long since gone home. 0

Election fraud IS common and DOES affect election outcomes. That's why it is so common --- ask anybody in Florida, Ohio or your beloved State of Texas!
0 # soularddave 2012-10-20 06:18
Quoting LWhiteford:
There are too many people who change addresses and can vote in both locations.

So it's still easy to get your ID with a new address, then use the old one *and* the new one in both locations. How is anything "solved" by the new requirements?

Think about it. We in border cities know people with seemingly "valid" drivers' licenses in two states. Why would one risk such major penalties to cast just one vote among 10s of millions, when there's no financial benefit?
+7 # bingers 2012-09-29 10:46
Isn't it amazing that Republicans are constantly blathering on about how Democrats will take away your freedom when the only instances of that happening are exclusively from the right?

What they are talking about is your freedom to starve, become homeless or die from lack of healthcare. That's freedom we can do without.
-6 # HJ7 2012-09-29 19:25
If the USA had not allowed over 10 million illegal aliens to infiltrate across her borders there would be no need for voter IDs. With huge numbers of illegals living within her borders such IDs are essential to preserve democracy.
+3 # dovelane1 2012-09-30 03:36
You raise an interesting point. Can you prove how many illegal aliens are also voting illegally, or is this just an opinion you are using to rationalize away the possibility that the Republicans are actually trying to control the outcome of this election?
+3 # brux 2012-10-01 01:13
Well, can you point to even one case of voter fraud? More than 10 million people is the number that Palast mentioned on an AM radio show the other say as as the number of people who are possibly going to fall victim to the Republican dirty tricks.

Show me where this is documented as a problem first,

Then second, tell me why we have to do this immediately risking the consequences of cheating Americans out of their rightful votes?

Maybe they ought to use ID, but for the first few elections I think they ought to keep records and see who does not have an ID. Still let people vote, but take their names and try to help them get ID. Make the deadline for having ID in 8 years when it becomes a law and do it fairly.

Do you know accoring to Palast that a lot of mail in ballots are not even counted?
0 # soularddave 2012-10-19 17:33
If you embrace "facts" like these, you don't seem to have qualified yourself very well to make informed decisions that affect the rest of us.
+3 # Sunflower 2012-09-30 09:07
The effort at voter suppression shows that the Republicans are not representing the majority of the voting public. (Duh!)
We already knew that, but they are admitting it in public with
this attempt at voter disenfranchisement.

Let's call them on it!
+3 # James Smith 2012-09-30 13:45
Next will be no voting at all. You'll be told who will be the next selected "great leader". After all, it isn't as if the USA is still a free country, is it? Perpetual war, warrantless searches, citizens held by the military indefinitely without charges, no-knock searches, wiretaps without court orders, the list goes on. Those are things already in place. Why should open and honest elections be sacred, too?
+3 # brux 2012-10-01 01:09
There will not be any real voting ever unless the people's will is considered on ISSUES, not just who's the better looking or faster talking liar!

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