Thursday, November 10, 2016

Remember When Trump Spoke About the Election Being Rigged?

Well, it was, in a way, because this was the first election without the full protection of the Voting Rights Act.  Ari Berman writes this about Wisconsin:

 For example, 27,000 votes currently separate Trump and Clinton in Wisconsin, where 300,000 registered voters, according to a federal court, lacked strict forms of voter ID. Voter turnout in Wisconsin was at its lowest levels in 20 years and decreased 13 percent in Milwaukee, where 70 percent of the state’s African-American population lives, according to Daniel Nichanian of the University of Chicago.

And more generally:

 On Election Day, there were 868 fewer polling places in states with a long history of voting discrimination, like Arizona, Texas, and North Carolina. These changes impacted hundreds of thousands of voters, yet received almost no coverage. In North Carolina, as my colleague Joan Walsh reported, black turnout decreased 16 percent during the first week of early voting because “in 40 heavily black counties, there were 158 fewer early polling places.”
Even if these restrictions had no outcome on the election, it’s fundamentally immoral to keep people from voting in a democracy. The media devoted hours and hours to Trump’s absurd claim that the election was rigged against him, while spending precious little time on the real threat that voters faced.

The ability to vote is fundamental for democracy to exist.  To take away that ability, to make voting much harder in some places and some people, that is not democracy.  The Republican Party is using an anti-democratic strategy to keep those likely to vote for Democrats out of the voting booth.