Saturday, August 27, 2016

By any other name

Kris Kobach, Secretary of State of Kansas, is promoting the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program. States can use it to verify that a voter is registered in only one state. Sounds reasonable. The Crosscheck program matches names – first, middle, last – plus birth date and last four of SSN.

Except it doesn't. Greg Palast of Rolling Stone found that the program is matching only first and last names. And 85 of the top 100 most common last names are used by minorities. Meaning minority voters are much more likely to be matched with people in other states and it is minority voters who are most likely to be purged in battleground states such as Ohio and North Carolina. And they're likely to not find out about it until election day.

When I last wrote I mentioned that Trump appears to be wooing black voters. I said he is doing this to convince white voters he isn't racist. I've now heard that reasoning mentioned by several media stories, such as at DailyKos and NPR. No, I did not originate this idea.

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