by Kashana Cauley, New York Times, DEC. 13, 2017 (print title: “What Democrats Owe Black Voters,” 12/14/17). Doug Jones, now Senator from Alabama, owed his upset victory to Black voters (despite a state voter ID law designed to cut down on Black participation). The lesson (conclusion of the article):
…To be competitive nationwide, Democrats need to fight voter ID laws, pass automatic voter registration, restore the Voting Rights Act to its full strength and work to re-enfranchise ex-felons, who deserve to be fully reintegrated into society. Democrats should also make policy appeals aimed at black voters and support promising black candidates like Stacey Abrams, who’s running for governor of Georgia in 2018.
The Alabama election results provide a great opportunity for the Democratic Party to make a stronger effort to reach out to black voters. We are just like white voters in that we like to be courted and told that our participation matters. If Democrats want to win more elections, they have to integrate black voters into the heart and soul of the party.
by Susan Rzucidlo, Times of Chester County, 10/26/15
In 2014 the courts ruled that the Pennsylvania Voter ID law violated our state constitution. So you can imagine why I was shocked when earlier this month, as I entered the Chester County Assistance Office on behalf of a family in need, I saw three inaccurate and misleading posters stating that Pennsylvania’s Voter ID law was in litigation and that you could be required to show a photo ID.
I called the County Assistance Office Administration and left a message for the Director, Michelle Livingston, and asked for the posters to be removed. I explained that these posters should have come down 16 months ago and to please call me if there was any reason that these posters would remain. I was very pleasantly surprised when I walked back into the office a few days later and the inaccurate posters had been removed and replaced with posters which let readers know that they could and should register to vote. I couldn’t be more pleased with the response to my call.
On Tuesday, November 3rd you will have the opportunity to vote and unless you are voting for the first time, you can NOT be asked for a Photo ID. If you are asked for ID, or asked to sign in by anyone other than the judge of elections, just say no. Say no, proudly and with confidence, because it is your right to vote without being intimidated. If any of these things happen to you, please call Chester County Voter Services at 610-344-6410 and tell them that you are being denied your right to vote and file a complaint with the PA Department of State. It is your civic duty and right to vote. Don’t allow anyone to take that away from you.
Three PA Supreme Court seats are up for election on Nov. 3. That group of 7 will decide if future efforts to restrict voting and the scheduled 2021 redistricting meet the requirements of the US and PA constitutions. If all the state courts remain Republican-dominated, we will have more of the anti-voter pattern coming at us from the south and west, as shown on this map from The Brennan Center:
See To retake the Pennsylvania legislature, Democrats first must regain the state Supreme Court and State Judicial Races: Who Cares?. The Corbett-era Voter ID law intended to screen out many voters likely to be voters was struck down by the PA Commonwealth Court in 2014 but could always be resurrected with the PA Supreme Court as final decider.
by Elizabeth Drew, New York Review of Books, May 21, 2015
While people are wasting their time speculating about who will win the presidency more than a year from now—Can Hillary beat Jeb? Can anybody beat Hillary? Is the GOP nominee going to be Jeb or Walker?—growing dangers to a democratic election, ones that could decide the outcome, are being essentially overlooked. The three dangers are voting restrictions, redistricting, and loose rules on large amounts of money being spent to influence voters. In recent years, we’ve been moving further and further away from a truly democratic election system.
The considerable outrage in 2012 over the systematic effort in Republican-dominated states to prevent blacks, Hispanics, students, and the elderly from being able to vote—mainly aimed at limiting the votes of blacks and Hispanics—might have been expected to lead to a serious effort to fix the voting system. But quite the reverse occurred….
keep reading at New York Review of Books