Tag Archives: voter suppression

A Call To Arms Vs. Voter Suppression…

Our friend Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ father, William Louis-Dreyfus, took out a full-page ad in The New York Times yesterday to rally support in the battle against insidious voter suppression efforts in many states.

In his broadside, William points that some Republicans have been blunt about their motives for passing legislation requiring photo IDs, reducing early voting, striking people from registered voter rolls, and other vote suppression tactics. Republican Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, for instance, famously bragged about passing “Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania.” (Too bad for Turzai, he told the truth on tape.)

The fight against voter suppression is critical. As an Ohioan, I remember the 2004 Presidential election all too well. Kerry lost Ohio by the narrowest of margins – but how many votes for Kerry were lost because the Republican Secretary of State made sure there were too few noting machines in Democratic-leaning districts? The long lines of lower income working folk and students waiting for many hours to vote were an embarrassment – and a very real danger — to our democracy.

Voters in inner-city precincts in Columbus, Cleveland and Toledo — which were voting for Kerry by margins of ninety percent or more — often waited up to seven hours. At Kenyon College, students were forced to stand in line for eleven hours before being allowed to vote. According to an article by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on the Common Dreams website, “Republicans prevented more than 350,000 voters in Ohio from casting ballots or having their votes counted — enough to have put John Kerry in the White House.”

William Louis-Dreyfus knows this. You can check out his ad at the website of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. Make a donation if you can. This is an important fight.

You can also check out an interview with William in the Huffington Post.

Bravo, William, for leading the charge!


Filed under History, Politics

The Bounce!

Now that both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions are over – there are two things have become increasingly clear as the national tracking polls roll out day after day.

Mitt got no significant bounce out of his convention.

President Obama got a very healthy bounce. As of today – Obama’s bounce is anywhere from 5 to 7 points depending upon the poll. Now, the polls all show Obama leading Romney by anywhere from 4 to 6 points – and Gallup has the President at 52%

It’s possible that Obama’s numbers will continue to rise as the weekly tracking polls no longer include any days after the RNC and include more days during and immediately after the Democrats’ very successful convention.

But while progressives like me celebrate Obama’s bounce, there are a couple of things we liberals should begin to focus on.

1. It’s all about GOTV – Get Out The Vote.

Obama’s leads in the Gallup, Ipsos, Rasmussen and CNN polls mean nothing if Obama voters don’t – or can’t — vote. We must avoid the kind of liberal apathy that allowed the Tea Party to win so many Congressional seats in the 2010 mid-term elections – and we must overcome voter suppression efforts in Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, among others.

2. The down-ballot elections are vitally important. Democrats must keep their Senate majority — and we’ve got to reduce the GOP lead in the House.

Dear home state Ohioans! Re-elect Senator Sherrod Brown!

Hopefully, we can take over the House and make John Boehner a minority leader. Wouldn’t that be a joy?

Watch those Senate races in Massachusetts, Ohio, Missouri and Virginia!

But, for the moment, you have my permission to pause a moment and enjoy The Obama Bounce.



Filed under Politics