Skip to comments.Morning Bell: Justice Department Blocks Voter ID at Every Turn
Posted on 07/27/2012 10:53:45 AM PDT by Hunton Peck
People seemingly voting after theyve been dead for years. Drug kingpins buying votes from poor people to sway elections. Non-citizens being bussed to the polls and coached on how to vote. Stories of voting fraud are shocking, and states have been taking action to make sure that elections are secure. But the Justice Department, led by Attorney General Eric Holder, has blocked states at almost every turn.
This is the same Justice Department that stopped a non-partisan election reform by arguing that if party affiliation were removed from a ballot, African-American voters wouldnt be able to identify and vote for the Democrats. Holder has continued to stoke the racial fires, calling a requirement for voters to produce photo identification a poll tax. Heritage expert Hans von Spakovsky said this argument is merely political. Holder continues to perpetuate the incendiary error to the public, knowing that the poll-tax assertion is a racially charged one that should not be used lightly, von Spakovsky said. He explained:
Even the Ninth Circuit Court of Appealsthe most liberal appeals court in the countrydid not buy the Holder poll tax claim when it reviewed Arizonas voter ID law. In Gonzalez v. Arizona (2012), the Ninth Circuit held that even though obtaining the free identification required under [Arizona law] may have a cost, such immaterial costs are not a poll tax.
Holder is now investigating Pennsylvanias voter ID law, on the lefts charge that it disenfranchises minorities.
Former Congressman Artur Davis, an African-American from Alabama who served in Congress as a Democrat from 2003 to 2011, finds this argument incredibly insulting. Speaking at The Heritage Foundation yesterday, Davis held up his drivers license and said, This is not a billy club. It is not a fire hose. I used to represent Birmingham and Selma, Alabama, and I know something about fire hoses.
In states that have voter ID laws, the real-world results show that minorities have not been disenfranchised by any means. States that require ID to vote have offered free IDs to anyone who does not have one already. In Kansas, which allows any of nine different forms of ID as proof of identity to vote:
Out of a total of 1.713 million registered voters in Kansas, only 32 people had requested a free photo ID as of May 4, 2012. That represents only 0.002 percent of the registered voters in the state. Of those 32 voters, 80 percent were white, 10 percent were black, and the race or ethnicity of 10 percent was unknown. Thus, there is no evidence that minority voters were disproportionately affected.
Georgia, which has had voter ID since 2007, allows six different forms of ID to vote. And there has been no stampede of would-be voters who lack identification: The number of photo IDs issued by Georgia to individuals who did not already have one of the forms of ID acceptable under state law is remarkably small, averaging less 0.05 percent in most years, and not even reaching three-tenths of 1 percent in a presidential election year.
What happened to minority voting after the law went into effect? In the 2008 presidential election, Hispanic voting in Georgia increased by 140 percent over the 2004 election. African-American voting increased by 42 percent. That is also a higher rate of increase than in other states without voter ID. Von Spakovsky notes:
The increase in turnout of both Hispanics and blacks in the 2008 presidential election after the voter ID law became effective is quite remarkable, particularly given the unproven and totally speculative claims of the Justice Department that the voter ID requirements of Texas and South Carolina will somehow have a discriminatory impact on Hispanic and black voters. In fact, Georgia had the largest turnout of minority voters in its history.
The evidence that producing photo ID is a burden simply isnt there. How can it be a burden to ask people to do something they do all the time? asked Congressman Davis, who said he went to a news organization to do an interview on voter ID and had to produce his drivers license to enter the news organization.
The Justice Department requires ID from visitors as well.
Voter ID battles are not over, and activist groups are trying everything they can think of to challenge these requirements. The Minnesota legislature passed a referendum that placed the question of voter ID on the ballot for citizens to decide. But the ballot question is under litigation because the League of Women Voters has sued, arguing that the question is misleading to voters. The Minnesota Supreme Court will be considering it.
In the state of Kentucky, it has become clear that buying votes is a common practice. A persons vote can often be bought for $50. Recently, it has come to light that cocaine and marijuana dealers are using drug money to buy votes and turn elections. According to one report, In the Eastern District of Kentucky alone, more than 20 public elected officials and others have either been convicted or pleaded guilty in various vote-buying cases just in the last two years.
America cannot allow its elections to be anything but secure and legal. Preventing voter fraud is common sense, and it is outrageous that the U.S. Justice Department would stand in the way.
Eric Holder holds distinctly racist attitudes about the capabilities of black voters.
The referenced letter from the DOJ:
U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
Office of the Assistant Attorney General
Washington, DC 20530
August 17, 2009
James P. Cauley III, Esq.
Rose Rand Wallace
P.O. Drawer 2367
Wilson, North Carolina 27894-2367
Dear Mr. Cauley:
This refers to the change to nonpartisan elections, with a plurality-vote requirement, for the City of Kinston in Lenoir County, North Carolina, submitted to the Attorney General pursuant to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, 42 U.S.C. 1973c. We received your response to our June 10, 2009, request for additional information on June 16, 2009; additional information was received on August 4, 2009.
We have carefully considered the information you have provided, as well as information from other interested parties. Under Section 5, the Attorney General must determine whether the submitting authority has met its burden of showing that the proposed change “neither has the purpose nor will have the effect” of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race, color or membership in a language minority group. As discussed further below, I cannot conclude that the city has sustained its burden of showing that the proposed changes do not have a retrogressive effect. Therefore, based on the information available to us, I object to the voting changes on behalf of the Attorney General.
According to the 2000 Census, the City of Kinston has a total population of 23,688 people, of whom 14,837 (62.6%) are African-American. The total voting age population is 17,906, of whom 10,525 (58.8%) are African-American. The American Community Survey for 2005-2007 estimates the total population to be 22,649, of whom 14,967 (66.6%) are African-American. As of October 31, 2008, the city has 14,799 registered voters, of whom 9,556 (64.6%) are African-American.
Although black persons comprise a majority of the city’s registered voters, in three of the past four general municipal elections, African Americans comprised a minority of the electorate on election day; in the fourth , they may have been a slight majority. For that reason, they are viewed as a minority for analytical purposes. Minority turnout is relevant to determining whether a change under Section 5 is retrogressive. Hale County v. United States, 496 F.Supp 1206 (D.D.C.).
Black voters have had limited success in electing candidates of choice during recent municipal elections. The success that they have achieved has resulted from cohesive support for candidates during the Democratic primary (where black voters represent a larger percentage of the electorate), combined with crossover voting by whites in the general election. It is the partisan makeup of the general electorate that results in enough white cross-over to allow the black community to elect a candidate of choice.
This small, but critical, amount of white crossover votes results from the party affiliation of black-preferred candidates, most if not all of whom have been black. Numerous elected municipal and county officials confirm the results of our statistical analyses that a majority of white Democrats support white Republicans over black Democrats in Kinston city elections. At the same time, they also acknowledged that a small group of white Democrats maintain strong party allegiance and will continue to vote along party lines, regardless of the race of the candidate. Many of these white crossover voters are simply using straight-ticket voting. As a result, while the racial identity of the candidate greatly diminishes the supportive effect of the partisan cue, it does not totally eliminate it.
It follows, therefore, that the elimination of party affiliation on the ballot will likely reduce the ability of blacks to elect candidates of choice. Black candidates will likely lose a significant amount of crossover votes due to the high degree of racial polarization present in city elections. Without party loyalty available to counter-balance the consistent trend of racial bloc voting, blacks will face greater difficulty winning general elections. Our analysis of election returns indicates that cross-over voting is greater in partisan general elections than in the closed primaries. Thus, statistical analysis supports the conclusion that given a change to a non-partisan elections, black preferred candidates will receive fewer white cross-over votes.
The change to nonpartisan elections would also likely eliminate the partys campaign support and other assistance that is provided to black candidates because it eliminates the party”s role in the election. The party provides forums for black candidates to meet with voters who may otherwise be unreachable without the party’s assistance. In addition, the party provides campaign funds to candidates, without which minority candidates may lag behind their white counterparts in campaign spending.
Removing the partisan cue in municipal elections will, in all likelihood, eliminate the single factor that allows black candidates to be elected to office. In Kinston elections, voters base their choice more on the race of a candidate rather than his or her political affiliation, and without either the appeal to party loyalty or the ability to vote a straight ticket, the limited remaining support from white voters for a black Democratic candidate will diminish even more. And given that the city’s electorate is overwhelmingly Democratic, while the motivating factor for this change may be partisan, the effect will be strictly racial.
Under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, the submitting authority has the burden of showing that a submitted change has neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect. Georgia v. United States, 411 U.S. 526 (1973); Procedures for the Administration of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, 28 C.F.R. 51.52. In light of the considerations discussed above, I cannot conclude that your burden has been sustained in this instance. Therefore, on behalf of the Attorney General, I must object to the change to nonpartisan elections, with a plurality vote requirement.
Under Section 5 you have the right to seek a declaratory judgment from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia that the proposed change neither has the purpose nor will have the effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group. 28 C.F.R. 51.44. In addition, you may request that the Attorney General reconsider the objection. 28 C.F.R. 51.45. However, unless and until the objection is withdrawn or a judgment from the District of Columbia court is obtained, the change to nonpartisan elections, with a plurality vote requirement, continues to be legally unenforceable. Clark v. Roemer, 500 U.S. 646 (1991); 28 C.F.R. 51.10.
To enable us to meet our responsibility to enforce the Voting Rights Act, please inform us of the action the city plans to take concerning this matter. If you have any questions, please call Mr. J. Eric Rich (202-305-0107), an attorney in the Voting Section.
Acting Assistant Attorney General
One thing that needs to be pointed out, loud and clear. If voter ID were required, people would have four years between elections, to get an ID. If they can’t get one in that time, they don’t deserve one.
Only a total dumb-ass would want to remove party affiliations from the ballot. I’m surprised the rats don’t want it.
So Holder must also be against producing photo identification to buy a gun??
Too bad that the states trying to enact voter ID don’t simply mirror the ones in the states that do have them so they can use them as a precedent.
But then that might make sense... No sarc tag needed on this line.
In Puerto Rico, a U.S. Territory also subject to the VRA, we’ve had a voter ID law since at least the 80s. Any person who wishes to vote needs to register with the State Elections Commission (SEC), who issues the electoral card for FREE. BTW, the SEC requires proof of U.S. Citizenship (birth certificate or U.S. Passport)and proof of local address (e.g., utility bills) before they issue the ID.
On election day, if your ID does not match the active voter list, you don’t vote. If a neighbor in the voting precinct knows that someone is not from the neighborhood and is voting there, he can take it up with the officials and the vote will be voided. To make sure no one votes more than once, as each person is handed a ballot their index finger is marked with IR indelible ink.
All this in a predominantly hispanic “state”.
how does buying a gun put more power in the hands of collectivists?
I mean, really, isn’t that the only justification for any policy?
Criteria for a Fair Election:
1) Only Resident Citizens are eligible to Vote.
2) Resident Citizens must be registered in their home district.
3) A properly registered citizen will carry his/her pictured registration card to the polling place, and will not be allowed to vote without this identification.
4) Registered citizens who do not vote (for any reason) are removed from the voting rolls, and are thereafter ineligible to vote until they once again re-register.
5) Citizens may request an absentee ballot in person. They will have their registration card punched for this election, indicating their vote will have been cast.
1) At the polling place, the voter will present his pictured identification, and sign the poll log with his/her legal signature.
2) The election judge will verify eligibility, punch the identification card for this election, and dip the voters non-dominant thumb in indelible purple ink. This prevents anyone from casting multiple votes.
3) The voter will be given a blank paper ballot and pen to clearly mark his intended choices. Unclear or Incorrectly marked ballots can be immediately replaced with a fresh ballot by signing the defective ballot in the presence of an election judge, and observing its destruction in a shredder by that election judge. Any marks on the ballot not made by the voting pen are ignored.
4) Voting occurs when the correct ballot is folded and inserted into a large, clear, sealed plastic container prominently presented in the polling place, and the voter returns the voting pen to the election judge.
5) A typical polling place should accumulate a few hundred ballots.
1) When the polls close, the chief election judge will secure all unused ballots, all voting pens, and the indelible voting ink.
2) Only then is the large plastic container unsealed and the votes counted and tabulated locally, publicly, and where they are cast. (This will take a few hours.)
3) The local results are then posted locally and publicly for all to see.
4) The counted ballots are then secured by the chief election judge.
5) These local results are then sent to a statewide accumulation point, where the results are combined with those of other polling places, and only then, presented to the media and the general public.
But then the League of Women voters, the NAACP, and voces de Frontera will sue and some liberal judge will tie the wole things up in an injunction. That is what has happened in Wisconsin.