Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Another Day, Another Assault On Our Democracy

Late yesterday, the vote suppressors in the NC Senate introduced a substitute bill that turned the 14-page voter ID law into a 57-page monument to their actual fear that people will never vote them into power again, the so-called "An Act To Restore Confidence in Government" (what a laugh!), S589, which they clearly intend to ram through quickly before opposition can mount and before their own legislative troops have time to read the text, not that the legisbots read anything except their marching orders.

Here's some of what the substitute S589 will do:
Eliminates college IDs as proof of identity 
No more pre-registration for 16- & 17-year-olds 
Eliminates same-day voter registration

Voter can be challenged by any registered voter of the county rather than precinct

Slices a week off Early Voting

Eliminates straight-party ticket voting  
Sets up a study instead of mandating electronic filing for state legislators

Increases maximum campaign contribution to $5,000 instead of $4,000  
Weakens disclosure requirements for Independent Expenditure committees 
Authorizes vigilante poll observers, lots of them, with expanded range of interference  
Expands the scope of who may examine registration records and challenge voters  
Repeals out-of-precinct provisional voting (if you happen to show up in the wrong precinct, you'll be shit out of luck)

Repeals mandate for high-school registration drives

Eliminates flexibility in opening Early Voting sites at different hours within a county 
Makes it more difficult to add satellite polling sites for elderly or voters with disabilities

Changes what is the official ballot, particularly for DRE machines  
Limits who can assist a voter adjudicated to be incompetent by court

Repeals 3 public financing programs  
Repeals disclosure requirements under Candidate Specific Communications

No more paid voter registration drives  
Moves presidential primary to first the Tuesday after South Carolina
Fair-minded Republicans -- if there are any left in this state -- can claim all day that this is just about preventing fraud, and if they claim that, they're lying to themselves and to the rest of us. It's very clear that this is all about voter suppression and nothing more.

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