Thursday, September 4, 2014

Just use your passport

The cover story in this month's Washington Spectator is on the GOP rush to make sure black people can't vote. They've been working hard at this issue for about a decade. The WS article explores what is going on in Georgia.

A big reason for the urgency is this: "Georgia's combined non-white population increased from 37 to 45 percent from 2000 to 2010." The supply of angry white guys isn't keeping up. After the Supremes gutted a key part of the Voting Rights Act, districts in the South are scrambling to take advantage of not having their voting laws reviewed by the Department of Justice.

A big part of the tactic in Georgia is a voter-ID law. GOP politicians say it is to prevent voter fraud – in spite of presenting to a judge zero evidence of such fraud actually happening. That apparently comes down to definitions. It seems to the GOP mind a black person voting simply has to be fraud, cuz, you know, the only way a black person will vote is if you pay them to do it

The article delves into the case presented to a district judge. Some of their data:

* More than 874,000 Georgians didn't have drivers licenses in 2003

* More than 390,000 Georgians of voting age don't have a car, affecting their ability to afford a license.

* 28% of blacks and 21% of Hispanics live in poverty, compared to 10% of whites.

* The margin of victory in races for the governor have been about 260,000.

The judge declared the law to be unconstitutional. So the GOP provided a way of getting state IDs for free and said they would do a big media push to make sure everyone got one. Then the same judge heartily approved the bill, making some think the second opinion was "as if it had been written by another judge on another planet."

The GOP did that big media push. There was a huge emphasis on the need to have an ID when voting. It was only in the fine print that instructions were given on how to get a free one.

Will some not vote because they'll be challenged and disrespected when they do? Or will they resolve to not have their vote stripped?

One GOP senator said – ponder of the cluelessness of the statement – "If you don't have a driver's license, you can always use your passport."

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