Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for November 5th, 2012

Petition Ohio Secretary of State not to suppress the vote

Posted by Charles II on November 5, 2012

(Image from

Onward, Rocinante!

Posted in Good Things | Comments Off on Petition Ohio Secretary of State not to suppress the vote

God bless the American people standing in lines

Posted by Charles II on November 5, 2012

I think the signs point to an Obama win large enough that it will be hard to steal. But even if that victory happens–especially if that happens– let’s not forget what people are going through to accomplish it. Chris McGreal, The Guardian:

Florida Democrats have accused the swing state’s Republican leadership of impinging on the fundamental rights of Americans amid growing voter anger at lengthy queues to vote, the shutting down of early voting and chaos in Miami over absentee ballots.

The state’s Democratic party filed a lawsuit on Sunday to keep polling places open until election day as the Republicans stood accused of attempting to disenfranchise its opponents with new limits on early voting that contributed to waits of more than seven hours to cast ballots in Democratic strongholds such as Miami.

The Miami-Dade elections headquarters shut it doors on Sunday to people attempting to request absentee ballots because so many people showed up. Outside, would-be voters protested, shouting: “Let us vote”.

This is shameful. Ann Coulter can vote any place that she finds convenient, even if it breaks the letter of the law. But millions of people are forced to take time off from work or arrange for child care, stand in long lines, and endure “voter challenges” from what amount to white supremacist vigilantes in order to exercise their right to vote. And then, after they have endured this, many ballots will not be counted because they’re “provisional”… or even tampered with by dishonest vote counting as we saw in Clackamas County, Oregon.

Those people standing in long lines and putting up with so much hardship and injustice deserve a much better government than they have or will have. As Yoolooloo said at DK:

You see, in all my voting life, I’ve never had to wait longer than 15 minutes, tops….

So why were we so angry? It’s because we both realized all over again that voting should be this easy, this casual, this much fun, for every single American.

To those of you who haven’t had it as easy as I have, who’ve had to wait for hours or come back another day with the right documents, or deal with any other Republican nefariousness, I offer my profound respect — and my sheepish apologies for not appreciating nearly enough just how fortunate I’ve been. And let’s just say that election reform has moved up several places on my list of critical issues for activism and advocacy.

God bless the people who stand in lines for simple justice, and also those who get angry enough to do something to put an end to this system of oppression. For they shall be called the children of heaven.

Posted in voting rights | Comments Off on God bless the American people standing in lines

The Republican Platform

Posted by Charles II on November 5, 2012

I think this fairly accurately captures the Romney argument for why he should be elected. No, not kidding.

Posted in Mitt Romney | 2 Comments »

PPP: Minnesota Voter Suppression And Marriage Suppression Amendments Look Doomed

Posted by Phoenix Woman on November 5, 2012

Here is very good news from Public Policy Polling. In addition to reporting that Obama leads Romney comfortably in the state, 53% to 45%, there is also good news on the two crummy amendments the state GOP wanted to shove down our throats:

The more interesting findings on our final Minnesota poll deal with the state’s high profile amendments to ban gay marriage and require voter identification. We find both narrowly trailing. 45% of voters say they’ll vote for the gay marriage ban, compared to 52% who are opposed to it. And 46% say they’ll support the voter ID amendment to 51% who are opposed.

Not only is the “Voter ID” voter suppression amendment losing (46% to 51%), so is the marriage suppression amendment, 45% to 52%. Since amendments to the state constitution need not just a plurality, but a majority of the votes cast, this bodes well for Tuesday.

Now, the marriage amendment never got much more than 50%, and it’s been below 50% for some time now, so it’s not surprising to see that it’s now in the mid-40s. What surprises the local punditti is that the voter suppression amendment is also losing — it had started out with between 70% and 80% support, so much support that various big local Democratic-affiliated groups didn’t want to waste time and money fighting it. But Sally Jo Sorensen, the best blogger in the State of Minnesota and one of its top five journalists, period, noticed that a lot of county governments were expressing to their local papers their absolute horror at the damage this massive unfunded mandate would do to their already-stressed budgets. We are literally talking about counties having to forego fixing roads or hiring cops because of this amendment.

Over the months, as winter turned to spring and spring to summer, more of these county governments started speaking out about this — and more to the point, they started to compare notes, aided in large part by Sally Jo’s publicizing of the issue (a publicizing I did my small bit to aid), even as both the StarTribune (the Minneapolis paper of record) and the Pioneer Press (the Saint Paul paper of record) largely ignored this. Soon, a critical mass of note-comparing turned into the production of a few studies, studies that confirmed the counties’ worst fears as to the costs and complexities that would be forced upon them by this amendment.

This hit home with the vote suppressors. Even as the Republicans laughed off efforts to condemn the voter suppression amendment as racist — the racist intent would appeal to a lot of Minnesota voters, so the GOP was quite happy to see Democrats talk it up — they didn’t laugh off efforts to enumerate the cost to rural counties. They sent out the attack bozoes at the Center of the American Experiment to create some numbers purporting to show that the amendment wouldn’t cost as much as feared, but Sally Jo’s good friend, Gustavus Adolphus professor and elections expert Max Hailperin, shot down their numbers right quick. Finally, the voter suppressors turned to running TV ads — but by that time the various movers and shakers in Minnesota’s Democratic establishment and allied groups had started running TV ads of their own, ads featuring guys like former Republican governor Arne Carlson and current Democratic governor Mark Dayton.

Again, keep your fingers crossed. And I’m knocking on wood with one hand while I type this with the other. But if what I think will happen does happen, a good chunk of the credit for doing the early, unglamourous spadework will go to my friend Sally Jo Sorensen, who in a just world would be entrusted with the editorship of a big daily paper or the media operations of AFSCME or SEIU or the DFL.

Posted in 2012, Minnesota, voting rights | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

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