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New Voter Law (elections reforms)?

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by NewRoxFan, Sep 14, 2021.

  1. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
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    Pardon me for not finding the amusement in blatant voter suppression. The Republican Party executive branch and Republican Party legislature in Texas have worked their butts off to suppress voting in this state. Even registering to vote in Texas has become far more difficult.

    Hundreds of mail-in ballot applications are being rejected under Texas’ new voting rules
    Texas Republicans last year enacted new identification requirements for voting by mail as part of sweeping legislation that further restricted the state’s voting process and narrowed local control of elections.

    Hundreds of Texans seeking to vote by mail in the upcoming March primary elections are seeing their applications for ballots rejected by local election offices trying to comply with stricter voting rules enacted by Texas Republicans last year.

    Election officials in some of the state’s largest counties are rejecting an alarming number of mail-in applications because they don’t meet the state’s new identification requirements. Some applications are being rejected because of a mismatch between the new identification requirements and the data the state has on file to verify voters.

    Under Texas’ new voting law, absentee voters must include their driver’s license number or state ID number or, if they don’t have one, the last four digits of their Social Security number on their applications. If they don’t have those IDs, voters can indicate they have not been issued that identification. Counties must match those numbers against the information in an individual’s voter file to approve them for a mail-in ballot.

    In Harris County, 208 applications — roughly 16% of the 1,276 applications received so far — have been rejected based on the new rules. That includes 137 applications on which voters had not filled out the new ID requirements and 71 applications that included an ID number that wasn’t in the voter’s record.

    In Travis County, officials said they’ve rejected about half of the roughly 700 applications they’ve received so far, with the “vast majority” of rejections based on the new voting law.

    In Bexar County, officials have rejected 200 applications on which the ID section was not filled out. Another 125 were rejected because the voter had provided their driver’s license number on the application, but that number was not in their voter record.

    “It’s disturbing that our senior citizens who have relished and embraced voting by mail are now having to jump through some hoops, and it’s upsetting when we have to send a rejection letter [when] we can see they’ve voted with us by mail for years,” said Jacque Callanen, the Bexar County election administrator.

    Texas has strict rules outlining who can receive a paper ballot that can be filled out at home and returned in the mail or dropped off in person on Election Day. Only voters who are 65 or older automatically qualify. Otherwise, voters must qualify under a limited set of reasons for needing a mail-in ballot. Those include being absent from the county during the election period or a disability or illness that would keep them from voting in person without needing help or that makes a trip to the polls risky to their health.

    Throughout last year’s protracted debate over the new voting law, state lawmakers were warned about potential issues that could arise from the new ID matching requirements, in part because the state does not have both a driver’s license and Social Security number for all of the roughly 17 million Texans on the voter rolls. Voters are not required to provide both numbers when they register to vote.

    Last summer, the Texas secretary of state’s office indicated that 2,045,419 registered voters lacked one of the two numbers in their voter file despite the office’s efforts to backfill that information in the state’s voter rolls. Another 266,661 voters didn’t have either number on file.

    Those numbers have since dropped. As of Dec. 20, 702,257 voters had only one number on file, while 106,911 didn’t have either, according to updated figures provided by the Texas secretary of state’s office.

    Meanwhile, 493,823 registered voters didn’t have a driver’s license on file, which is the first number voters are asked to provide on both applications to register to vote and applications to vote by mail.

    The new law is also tripping up voters who may be unaware of the new ID requirements. Callanen said she had to reject 30 voters who submitted an outdated application form that didn’t include the new ID field. Election officials in Williamson County, which has processed a total of 305 applications to vote by mail, said the same issue plagued a chunk of the applications that they rejected.

    The sources of the outdated applications are unclear. While the Legislature banned county election officials from proactively sending out applications to vote by mail, even to voters who automatically qualify, voters can still receive unsolicited applications from campaigns and political parties.

    Republican state lawmakers wrote the new ID requirements into sweeping legislation, known as Senate Bill 1, that further restricted the state’s voting process and narrowed local control of elections. Joining a broader legislative push to ratchet up voting rules across the country, Texas Republicans billed the proposals contained in SB 1 as an effort to safeguard elections from fraud, despite no evidence that it occurs on a widespread scale.

    Warning it would raise new barriers to voting, SB 1 was denounced by advocates for voters with disabilities, voter advocacy groups and civil rights organizations with histories of fighting laws that could harm voters of color. It also prompted Democrats to flee the state last summer to delay consideration of the legislation, leaving the Texas House without enough members to conduct business for weeks. The wide-ranging law also faces several federal lawsuits.

    Voters whose applications are rejected because of the ID requirements are supposed to have an opportunity to fix the issue. Building on Democratic proposals, the new voting law also created a new correction process for mail-in voting, including errors on applications. That process begins when county officials provide voters with a notice that their application was rejected and information on how to correct the defect, including through a new online ballot tracker.

    A spokesperson for the secretary of state’s office said it would be providing “specific guidance to the counties in the near future to address any outstanding questions about this process.”

    But the window for corrections is narrowing. County officials can receive applications to vote by mail until Feb. 18, but it takes time to process applications and prepare materials to inform voters of a rejection.

    In Bexar County, Callanen is budgeting to hire two temporary workers just to handle processing rejections when the “deluge” of applications hits closer to the deadline.

    https://www.texastribune.org/2022/01/13/texas-voting-mail-rejections/
     
  2. txtony

    txtony Member

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    This statement ranks high up on the bs scale. I doubt even half of Americans heard of Uyghurs.

    80-90% of Americans want a universal background check for gun purchases. Pretty unified. Yet it has no chance to be law. What Americans want is very different from how Congress and the Gov works. Thx to the precious filibuster and a broken gov system.
     
  3. Os Trigonum

    Os Trigonum Trust the process
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    no amusement, I'm just echoing a serious point made by Jason Brennan in his The Ethics of Voting
     
  4. txtony

    txtony Member

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    What does that have anything to do with voter suppression?
     
  5. Astrodome

    Astrodome Member
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    Do you support voter ID? From what I understand, many people support showing ID to vote.
     
  6. fchowd0311

    fchowd0311 Contributing Member

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    Sure. Why not. Two issues.

    It addresses a problem that doesn't exist in a statistically significant manner.

    The way it would be implemented by historically racist states would be changes in the voting process before enough time for people who work 50+ hours a week(typically lower income people) to address the new voter requirements before the election.

    So if you really want to address a problem that isn't really a problem, sure but make sure any new id requirenents only are applied on the following election cycle and not the current one. Also due to the constitution, poll taxes are illegal therefore the ids must be issued out with no fees.

    So if you are willing to waste tax payer money which I'm sure you aren't as you are conservative leaning and allegedly care about deficits, then sure let's do it with those stipulations.

    Fair enough?
     
  7. Astrodome

    Astrodome Member
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    Break it up like BBB. No problem with that. Lumping everything together is a tough ask.
     
  8. dobro1229

    dobro1229 Contributing Member

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    BBB was lumped together because of the ability to use budget reconciliation to get through with only 50 votes. Joe Manchin wouldn't go for it because clean energy investment, and he's in the pocketbooks of coal barons. him himself being one.

    On voting rights, the vote yesterday was a way to start the process of putting him and Sinema on the record, and essentially starting the dialog with the American people. They knew it would fail so the show was the point. They exposed Sinema and Manchin in the process without dealing out personal attacks which is effective.

    Now we'll see how they vote on the broken out bills for specific issues. Both know that they their positions politically are untenable, and I'm guessing that they'll be voting yes on many of the broken out bills moving forward because they aren't complete idiots... well... maybe Sinema is but yeah.

    The question is where do 10 Republican votes come from on anything? Despite the lip service do you really think Susan Collins or whoever really want more people to be able to vote? The lady put Brett Kavanaugh on the court after a career of saying she supports a women's right to choose. At some point being a Republican means you are a Republican, and the Republican mantra across the board is that everyone voting is an existential crisis to their party. Even Liz Cheney, and Mitt Romney (who have no future in the party) have enough sentiment for the Republican cause in order to know they cannot vote that'll lead to more people being able to vote.

    So I think maybe some small bills can get passed, but without the filibuster being broken, I think we are pretty much done here, and the rest of the year will be a campaign to run on these bills getting passed if Democrats win the midterms.
     
  9. txtony

    txtony Member

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    Relevancy? The Freedom to Vote act doesn't ban voter ID. You thought it did?
     
  10. Astrodome

    Astrodome Member
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    No
     
  11. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    If they break up the voting bills the most important thing they need to address is state legislatures changing how the votes are counted. While the restrictions like the GA and TX laws are burdensome I don't think they are as dangerous to democracy as much of the rhetoric is. The real danger to me is where legislatures are replacing state and local election officials who in some cases have served for years with no complaint for partisan reasons. Also where legislatures are empowering themselves to overturn or delay the votes of their own states allowing the legislatures to send their own slates of electors.
     
  12. NewRoxFan

    NewRoxFan Contributing Member

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    Both are dangerous to democracy. The state legislature's changing how votes are counted is more immediate and ha greater impact, but burdensome voting laws targeted at selected voting populations are also dangerous since it takes away voting power especially of those out of power.
     
    txtony likes this.
  13. Os Trigonum

    Os Trigonum Trust the process
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    Althouse:

    January 22, 2022
    "[State voting] laws — like that recently passed in Georgia — are far from the nightmares that Dems have described, and contain some expansion of access to voting."

    "Georgians, and Americans in general, overwhelmingly support voter ID laws, for example. Such laws poll strongly even among allegedly disenfranchised African-Americans — whose turnout in 2012, following a wave of ID laws, actually exceeded whites’ in the re-election of a black president. In fact, the normalization of ID in everyday life has only increased during the past year of vax-card requirements — a policy pushed by Democrats. And Biden did something truly dumb this week: he cast doubt on the legitimacy of the election in November now that his proposal for a federal overhaul has failed: 'I’m not going to say it’s going to be legit.' No sitting president should do this, ever. But when one party is still insisting that the entire election system was rigged last time in a massive conspiracy to overturn a landslide victory for Trump, the other party absolutely needs to draw a sharp line. Biden fatefully blurred that distinction, and took the public focus off the real danger: not voter suppression but election subversion, of the kind we are now discovering Trump, Giuliani and many others plotted during the transition period.... And why have they wildly inflated the threat to election security and engaged in the disgusting demagoguery of calling this 'Jim Crow 2.0'? The WSJ this week tracked down various unsavory GOP bills to suppress or subvert voting in three states — three states Obama singled out for criticism — and found that they had already died in committee. To argue as Biden did last week in Georgia that the goal of Republicans is 'to turn the will of the voters into a mere suggestion — something states can respect or ignore,' is to add hyperbole to distortion...."

    Writes Andrew Sullivan, in "How Biden Lost The Plot/Listening to interest groups and activists is no way to get re-elected" (Substack).

    Posted by Ann Althouse at 6:27 AM
     
  14. NewRoxFan

    NewRoxFan Contributing Member

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    And yet...


    But... amazing what happens when people see what is happening...

     
  15. SamFisher

    SamFisher Virtuous

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  16. bobrek

    bobrek Politics belong in the D & D
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    deb4rockets likes this.
  17. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    Republicans have long been for mail in votes and in many previous elections they dominated those votes. It's only once Democrats started catching up and during the pandemic that they turned against them.
     
    deb4rockets likes this.
  18. bobrek

    bobrek Politics belong in the D & D
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    We were getting mailers in Florida during the last election from the Trump campaign encouraging us to vote by mail.
     
    deb4rockets likes this.
  19. NewRoxFan

    NewRoxFan Contributing Member

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    Not just winky the pirate...

    https://www.texastribune.org/2022/01/26/dan-crenshaw-texas-mail-in-ballot-voting-law/
     
  20. bobrek

    bobrek Politics belong in the D & D
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