St. Petersburg Times:
Not surprisingly, Gov. Rick Scott signed into law on Thursday pernicious election changes designed to benefit Republicans and suppress voting by minorities, college students and low-wage workers.
Election supervisors, who run elections in Florida, have predicted chaos and confusion at the polls because of these changes, which the GOP has falsely said was an effort to stem voter "fraud".
The League of Women Voters says it will suspend voter-registration activity in Florida because the bill requires such groups to register with the state and face fines of up to $1,000 for mistakes.
I'm sure that was the goal. Third-party voter registration groups such as the League of Women Voters, unions and the NAACP must turn in voter-registration cards within 48 hours or face HUGE fines, which groups have said would be difficult when they register thousands of new voters at a time.
In addition, this law cuts early voting in half. WHY? The majority of Obama voters in 2008 voted the first week of early voting. This new law makes it harder for low-income working people who don't have flexible hours to vote. The law even bars early-voting THREE DAYS BEFORE ELECTION DAY... to ensure casual voters don't vote the weekend before Nov. 2!!!
How that stems fraud is anyone's guess.
This law goes to the heart of the Democratic base. It will force women, minorities, and college students from getting actual ballots. They will be forced to use shady Provisional ballots....according to Politifact, the MAJORITY OF THESE BALLOTS ARE NOT COUNTED!!!
- Women can no longer update their names at the polls if they changed their marital status. They've been able to do this for almost half a century with NO issues. They will be forced to go provisional.
- College students will no longer be able to update their new address. Their votes will also be provisional... and unlikely to count
- Minorities should be worried as well:
There are many other new regulations, several depriving voters of their chance to work out problems at the polls. For instance, if voters are challenged for any reason, they would be required to cast a provisional ballot. And they could not receive legal help while in line, as before.
As I said before in a previous post, vote caging operations are a go for the GOP for 2012.
Other nuggets of evil:
ALL volunteers who just want to register voters must now register with the Supervisor of Elections. (Keep in mind Gov. Voldemort didn't want a database for pill mill doctors because it would violate the drug dealer's privacy... yet has no trouble using a database to intimidate voter registrators.)
The news media and bloggers are now restricted from taking video or audio of voters at polling places.
Citizen-led initiatives... the only challenge we have to the teabag legislature.. are now requiring a ridculous 600.000 signatures that must be collected in just 20 months--not four years.
There's more, but you get the point. Gov. Scott said its all about preventing fraud. Except no one.. .not any of the elections supervisors, not the Secretary of State, can find any instance. The Tampa Tribune article mentioned only 31 cases ever investigated in the past several years. So spare me.
In addition, if this was REALLY about fraud, why go after early voters? The biggest chance of fraud is ABSENTEE BALLOTS.. but these were left alone. WHY? Guess where the GOP gets a lot of votes from?
Please, help me out here. CALL TO ACTION!
Rick Scott has already passed an archaic rule requiring nonviolent felons to wait five years after completing their sentences before applying to have their voting rights restored. Even though HE KNOWS this will purge THOUSANDS of innocent (and disproportionately black) voters from the rolls misidentified as felons like we did in 2000.
I WILL NOT ALLOW THIS TO GO DOWN WITHOUT A FIGHT:
1. Contact the DOJ. Some of our election laws are subject to review because of the Voting Rights Act. This is a clear case of disenfranchisement. OBAMA! HOLDER! WAKE UP!
2. Contact the FLORIDA DEM PARTY. Tell THEM to wake the H&*LL up and start a citizen-led initiative that there can be NO changes to our election laws that restrict voting unless its put before the people!
This is so outrageous that even I am certain we can get 600,000 signatures in the time allotted. The govenor's office admitted they fielded a record number of calls... all of them opposed to this law. (Obviously, he cares not what the citizens want.)
3. Spread the message. Post what is happening here in Florida on your blog or post on someone else's. Talk to your neighbors, your friends, your family about what is going on. Please MAKE SOME NOISE... since the MSM has obviously decided to ignore this.
OH, and if they are in Florida, tell them to make sure they are registered to vote or to update their information at the Supervisor of Elections NOW!
DO NOT GET DISCOURAGED! We just won the mayorship in JAX--one of the most right-wing cities in the US! We elected Alan Grayson in a GOP district. We passed the fair district amendments with over 60% last year...during the red wave election. Dems in this state are finally waking up... Don't count us out just yet...