Ari Berman is sounding the alarm. As always, he is warning of Voter Suppression efforts in the states.
Mr. Berman is once again out here, calling it out and putting up the bat signal.
Just in time for 2020- GOP Voter Suppression.
Make no mistake – BOTH SIDES DON’T DO IT.
There is ONE PARTY out here doing Voter Suppression.
ONE PARTY for whom the objective is to LIMIT the number of people that get out and voter.
ONE PARTY who will resort to anything -INCLUDING P0LL TAXES – in order to prevent people from voting.
MAY 3, 2019
After the 2018 Blue Wave, Republicans Are Making It Harder to Vote
Key battleground states like Florida are adopting new voter suppression laws before the 2020 election.
By Ari Berman
In 2010, Karen Leicht was sentenced to 28 months in prison for conspiracy to commit insurance fraud. She was released in 2013, found a job as a paralegal in Miami, and completed her probation in 2016. But the 61-year-old lifelong Republican still couldn’t vote because of a Florida law banning people with past felony convictions from voting unless their rights were restored by the governor.
Leicht should have become eligible to get her voting rights back after the 2018 election, when 64 percent of Florida voters approved a ballot initiative overturning the state’s felon disenfranchisement law. Amendment 4 promised to restore the franchise to 1.4 million Floridians, the largest expansion of voting rights in the state since the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Yet Leicht and hundreds of thousands of other Floridians could lose the chance to regain their voting rights because of legislation that just passed Florida’s Republican-controlled legislature. The measure would require people with felony convictions to pay all restitution, fines, and fees resulting from their sentences before becoming eligible to vote. Leicht owes a staggering $59 million in restitution payments, meaning she’ll probably never vote again if Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, signs the bill into law.
“$59 million—really?” Leicht asked a state senate committee in March. “You think I can ever pay that? I’ll never vote in this state again, at this rate. That’s like a poll tax.”
The bill could disenfranchise more than half a million Floridians who have not completed restitution payments. (More than 80 percent of fines levied by courts in Florida from 2014 to 2018 had “minimal collections expectations,” according to the Clerk of Courts association, because defendants were too poor to pay them off.) Those with past felony convictions who have completed probation and parole began registering to vote in January, when Amendment 4 went into effect, and voter registration numbers have more than doubled from the same period four years ago. Now that could all come to a halt. “This is clearly an effort to undermine the will of the voters,” says Micah Kubic, executive director of the ACLU of Florida. “We are creating a two-tiered system and saying how much money you have can determine whether you can vote.”
This is absolutely nothing more than a POLL TAX.
The move to gut Amendment 4 is part of a broader effort by Republican-controlled states to restrict access to the ballot after voters approved ballot initiatives in November’s midterm elections to expand voting rights and elected Democrats who supported policies like automatic voter registration and felon reenfranchisement. “There is an uptick in activity around measures to restrict voting access,” the Brennan Center for Justice states in a new report, with 19 bills restricting voting access moving through state legislatures in 10 states.
And, you can guess which party is putting forth all these bills.
Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed a bill on Thursday that could curtail voter registration drives by imposing fines of up to $10,000 on groups that submit incomplete registration forms, even though they’re required by state law to hand in any registration forms they collect. The law imposes additional requirements on registration groups, such as mandatory state training and limited time windows to submit registrations, and failure to meet these requirements is punishable by jail time. Civil rights groups allege that the law is an effort to disenfranchise black voters after the Tennessee Black Voter Project registered 90,000 African Americans ahead of the 2018 election. Shortly after Lee signed the measure into law, the Tennessee chapter of the NAACP and other civil rights groups filed suit against state officials to challenge it.
Make no mistake. The GOP knows that it can’t win elections legitimately. So, they are deliberately attempting to take away the right to vote from as many citizens as possible.
This is nothing but the re-imposing of Jim Crow.