The War on Voters

Tomorrow is Election Day in the United States, and this year’s efforts to disfranchise voters have been unsettling in their coordination and innovation. Reports have surfaced across the nation of groups falsely alleging massive voter fraud. Some are even organizing surveillance teams to monitor polling places and even pursue buses of voters. The real reason for such shadowing is almost certainly to intimidate and deter voters.

Surveillance by Camera and Video

Organizers from the Tea Party and other groups in St. Paul, Minnesota, announced last week that they were offering a $500 reward to vigilantes for turning in people who are successfully prosecuted for voter fraud. The coalition is also organizing “surveillance squads” to photograph and videotape (read: intimidate) people trying to exercise their Constitutional right to vote. Tea Party organizers in Harris County, Texas, are using similar tactics even while conceding they violate local law. In Wake County, North Carolina, voters have complained that observers are “[standing] behind the registration table (where they're not allowed) and tak[ing] pictures of the license plates of voters using curbside voting (also not allowed).” Tea Party members have also begun challenging voter registration applications and announced plans to question individual voters at the polls whom they suspect of being ineligible.

Surveillance by Smartphone

An organization called the American Majority has developed a smartphone application for tracking incidents of so-called voter fraud. When a user launches the application, the phone’s GPS sends a report to a tracking database. Users are encouraged to use the phone’s camera, which the app automatically opens, to collect photographic evidence of the “fraud,” which is clearly an intimidating act and a violation of voters’ privacy.

Trickery to Dilute the Black Vote

In Harris County, Texas, a flyer is being circulated in black neighborhoods purporting to be from the black Democratic Trust of Texas. The flyer falsely claims that "when you vote straight ticket Democrat, it is actually voting for Republicans and your vote doesn't count" and that a vote for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White is a vote for the entire Democratic ticket. The flyer is clearly illegal and designed through trickery to deprive black voters of the right to vote.

Intimidation of Minority Voters

In Texas, a citizens group called the King Street Patriots has launched an initiative called True the Vote that has already come under fire for intimidating poll watching practices at early voting sites in predominately black and Latino precincts. Poll watchers are alleged to have followed voters after they checked in, hovered over voters as they cast ballots, looked over voters’ shoulders to see who they voted for, and provided misinformation about voting procedures.

Harassing Latino Voters

A group affiliated with the American Majority, Minnesota Majority, sued Minnesota officials in federal court last week for not allowing Minnesota Majority members to wear "I.D. me" buttons at the polls. The group has made unfounded charges that non citizens have been voting. Minnesota does not require ID at the polls with a couple of exceptions. Not to be outdone by Minnesota actions, last week a mass email sent in the name of Maricopa County’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio urged individuals to join an army of “VOTER FRAUD PREVENTION VOLUNTEERS to STOP ILLEGALS FROM STEALING THE ELECTION!” (capitalization theirs). Both tactics are clearly designed to motivate people to go out and harass minority voters.

Suspicious Fire

In late September, a suspicious fire destroyed nearly all of Harris County’s 10,000 electronic voting machines. Harris County encompasses Houston, the third largest city in the nation. Open Society Foundations grantee Advancement Project is working to mitigate the situation and protect minority voters.

Every American has the right to participate in the political process and elect representatives of their choice. Any form of discrimination, intimidation or challenge to voters without adequate basis is illegal and improper. There is just too much at stake for people to be denied their right to choose their leaders.

14 Comments

The Democrats have been dienfranchising the military for more then 50 years, maybe its time for you all to stop bitching and "Move On"...... hahahahaha

SO please tell me what is wrong with enforcing our laws???
If people are NOT HERE LEGALLY then they should/cannot vote. PERIOD!!!!
IF blacks OR whites OR browns cannot read they should not be allowed to vote. PERIOD

THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME

people voting illegally is wrong, and should be stopped. people voting legally being intimidated to thwart their vote by an opposing party is wrong, and should be stopped. our founding fathers would agree wholehartedly with both of these statements. Inconsistently co-opting/applying our founders electoral designs is a common theme in politics today. Personally, I'm fed up with everything being framed as republican/democrat, red/blue. Where were the teabaggers when the republicans were overspending? Reagan/Bush Sr tripled our debt, W doubled it, yet Clinton balanced the budget and handed W a surplus--how many tea baggers voted for Clinton? Rick--have you read the grammar on some of the teabaggers protest signs? I'm afraid readin' and rightin' ain't they're strong point...and I'm suspect of their understandin'. Most voters are simply pawns in a vast marketing scheme. Are you coke or pepsi, bud or miller, mcdonalds or burger king, ford or chevy, rural or cityfolk? As long as its framed one or the other we will be, well, split somewhere up the middle. Division is the lowest common denomiator in marketing, and we all fall into the trap. Howabout honest or a liar? There's a side I could clearly choose. Problem is, I would guess 90% of the potential candidates would fall under the latter...if you don't lie some of the time, a political career is short. Therein lies the problem

No, the Democrats have not been disenfranchising the military vote (what kind of elections suicide would that be?!?). Voter fraud is a manufactured crisis. Have you considered the cost benefit of committing a federal crime where there is a huge paper trail? There have been plenty of reports, but an extremely small portion have been substantiated and of those, most were eligible voters voting in the wrong precinct.

Elections fraud, however is a very serious problem, and US history is fraught with that. It is a far easier task to organize voter disenfranchisement drives than it is to get people to vote who aren't eligible. In fact, it is hard enough to get politically disenfranchised citizens to vote in the first place.

As an election judge in 2008 we had a Democrat Poll Challenger sitting in our precinct all day. Tomorrow I will be a Republican Poll Challenger. It's done at every election and at every polling place so it's not "Surveillance Team" out to "Intimidate" voters. You should do some research first.

In Minnesota in 2008 we had 44,000 more ballots than actual voters yet our Secretary of State saw nothing wrong with that. We had hundreds of felons vote which we found after the election when the Secretary of State gave up some research material.

I saw fraud first hand and filed a complaint only to be told everything was perfect. 44,000 extra ballots is perfect?

As for the Tea Party, we don't discriminate and include democrats, people of every color, age, it doesn't matter. You seem to be the ones concerned with race, not us.

In 2008 I watched people who were supposed to be asked for ID because mail was returned or they were registering, and democrat judges let them slide. It was in my precinct where I've lived for 50 years and somehow we ended up with over 400 more voters than actually live in my precinct.

ACORN sat outside my precinct in 2008 which is against the law and there was a guy outside watching people entering and he was intimidating, also democrat.

So please stop with the complaining and whining when YOU are the problem and trying to make "Black Voters", "Minority Voters" and "Latino Voters" feel that only YOU can save them. You could care less.

You're woefully misinformed and making assumptions without verifying the reality of your imaginations. American Majority and Minnesota Majority are not associated. The two groups just have similar names. Minnesota's anti-fraud efforts are just that and not aimed to supressing votes or any of that other nonsense. Learn the truth at http://www.electionintegritywatch.com. The voting machines in Texas were myseriously destroyed right after tampering was discovered. Who do you think might have been responsible for that arson? The Election Integrity crowd, or the ones who tampered?

My parents were a victim in Phoenix, AZ; they were cheated from voting.
My parents who are disabled requested early voting registrations and on the day of Voting Nov 2nd 2010, to our surprise there was only one page with NOTHING on it.
We need to find an alternative to voting where these crazy people dont get their way.
This is why the majority are REPUBLICANS; FAT ELEPHANTS

Dear Sorros, why is fox GB after you... and putting you down.. if you are so rich why don't you have TV channel where you can answer Fox channel back... why do democrats not have back bone... can't they have someone like Hannity... to talk bk.. this imp for this era of TV watchers... propaganda...

Have you ever watched MSNBC's nightly line up? You "progressives" act like there are no main stream media outlets that favor your side. MSNBC, Huffington Post, Politico, and the list goes on and on. People watch fox news because they trust it, yes they do cater to repulican viewers, so what, they do not make things up like other news outlets....

Fox News is the biggest threat to democracy there has ever been here in these United States.They;Fox news is the de facto house organ of the Republican Party.

The #1 contributer to voter fraud in the US is ACORN, that's been repeatedly validated. Interesting that ACORN is closely connected with Mr. Soros' Open Society Foundation-yes we all know about the "shadow network" you've developed. Disrupting a nation's voting process is right out of the Soros playbook on how to overthrow nations. We're on to you and despite Laleh (transparency? really??) and the rest of your loons efforts, you'd be advised to waste your money elsewhere. WE (not you) WILL WATCH THE POLLS, and we're all watching for you a lot more closely than in the past.

WHY DOES THIS ORGANIZATION HAIT THE USE AND WHAT WE AS A PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO DEFEND

It was not Tea Partiers who delivered absentee ballots to a PRISON in Illinois...It was not Tea Partiers dressed as New Black Panthers outside of a voting site in 2008 and again in 2010...It was not Tea Partiers contracted to service all electronic voting machines in NV...It was not a Tea Party candidate in NC that miraculously "found" 400 unreported votes in order to force an election recount.
Voters SHOULD be required to present ID. Voting SHOULD be closely observed and managed by non-partisan officials. Voting fraud SHOULD be severely punished.
And...If "being observed" strikes this author as synonymous with "intimidation," perhaps she should seek professional help for her nervous disorder before posting further.

Just a reminder-you forgot to mention the New Black Panther voter intimidation, especially in Philadelphia. A bit odd for an organization that claims to act in the interests of fairness and
non-biased journalism. Hmmmm .....

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