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View Diary: Ousted Florida Republicans, including ex-Gov. Crist, say voter suppression was state GOP's goal (146 comments)

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  •  GOP has such a multi-faceted approach (31+ / 0-)

    you mention changing address.

    The law requiring voters who moved to new county and did not change address before voting required provisional ballots, which are not always counted. Before, voters could change their address on election day.

    One county, provisional ballots went from 20 to 400. Another county saw increase of 1,500 provisional ballots.

    Then you had the ballots that were increased in size to many pages so that it took voters longer to vote, and thus also increase the lines of people waiting to vote.

    Obama indicated DC would address this issue, and i hope he does because the supermajority states of GOP outnumber democrat supermajority states.

    "It is in the shelter of each other that people live." Irish Proverb

    by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 10:03:27 AM PST

    •  impact seen on vote margins for 2008 and 2012 (3+ / 0-)
      Obama won Florida by by 74,309 votes, or 50.01 percent to Republican candidate Mitt Romney’s 49.13 percent — compared to a 237,000-vote margin in 2008.

      "It is in the shelter of each other that people live." Irish Proverb

      by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 10:57:01 AM PST

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      •  That really says nothing (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dirtroad, fladem

        Because you would have to assume that Obama would not have lost any votes between 2008 and 2012 and given what this economy is like, Obama's loss of votes is to be expected.

        And by your reasoning here, that would mean that Obama was robbed of North Carolina and Indiana and that there was voter suppression in Missouri (which he only lost by ~4,000 votes in 2008).

      •  This is just wrong (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        madhaus, Chitown Kev, Vetwife, Eric Nelson

        and I will tell you I think this is important.

        In 2008 Obama won by 7.3 nationallly, but won Florida by only 2.8.  In 2012 Obama is up about 3.3 nationally, but he won Florida by about 1.   Obama outperformed in Florida relative to his national performance in 2012 when compared to 2008.

        This is in turn a part of some very important changes here that this state that are making it easier for Democrats to win.  In the state legislature we picked up 7 seats, and we beat 2 incumbents in the House.

        I had thought until 2012 that Florida was trending Republican. That theory got blown apart here on election night - and I don't think either side has yet digested how big the change here is.

        The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

        by fladem on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 12:14:39 PM PST

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    •  It really depends on how (21+ / 0-)

      you define voter supression.  The obstacles put in front of Florida voters range from mere administration burden to actual voter disenfranchisement.  

      I have been part of the Democratic Legal Protection Team here for the last 4 cycles.  At its core, voter supression takes the following forms:

      1.  Reducing the ability of some to legally register to vote.  By far the biggest obstacle here is the requirement that a felon petition to have their voting rights restored.  Crist made this easier - and Scott undid the progress Crist had made here.

      Note - however - that restricting felon's right to vote is popular when it is polled.

      2.  Making it harder to conduct voter registration drives.  Here the new requirement was actually holding someone criminally liable if they registered a person who did not have the right to vote.  This made some groups here in Florida that have conducted voter registration efforts to stop doing them.

      The irony, of course, is that the only group to run afoul of the new law was the Republican GOP.

      3.  Removing people already registered from the rolls.  This happened in 2012 again - though it is worth noting that this involved far fewer voters than in 2000,  in part because of some very good reporting in the Miami Herald that noted the number of hispanics on the list.

      4.   Limiting early voting - in particularly SUNDAY early voting.  This was obviously designed to make it harder to vote, and in that case of Sunday early voting to stop black churches from running their "souls to the polls program".

      5.  Forcing voters to take provisional ballots - in each of the last 4 cycles this has really where the precinct level fights have been.  In 2012 there was a change in the law that made it harder for people who changed their addresses to take a regular ballot.   In early voting in Hillsborough we had answer for that: we would have the voter call the supervisor of elections and change their address.  They could then vote a regular ballot.  This was our strategy for election day as well - but it didn't work.  The SOE phone number became swamped, and as a result at my precinct a number of out of county voters DID have to take provisional ballots (though it would take a while to explain how I was able to get many of these voters to get a regular ballot).

      6.  Requiring voter ID's.  This law wasn't new in Florida - and by the way is very popular when polled.  In early voting we had an answer - we told the voter to go to the SOE and get an absentee ballot - since you don't need a picture to vote absentee.  This did not work on election day.

      7.  Voter name mismatches - I have not seen this reported elsewhere - but I saw a fair number of instances where the data on the election rolls was off.  For example, with hispanic voters the use of the mother's maiden name caused issues.  This required a call to the SOE to straighten out - but the SOE was so swamped that at times the clerk could get through.  As a result on a couple of instances these people had to take provisional ballots.  

      8.  Requiring clerks to call the SOE on election day to resolve this issues.
      This really makes me mad.  If there is a question about a voter's eligability, the clerks where given cell phones to use to call the SOE.  In both 2008 and 2012 the SOE was so swamped clerks could not get through.  In 2012 there was an improvement - each precinct had a computer that made it possible for the clerk to resolve some issues - but they all only had one!! Moreover, for reasons known to God, they limited the clerks to only access country records - which meant they had to call the SOE to deal with anything that might have been out of county.

      9.  The SOE LOST POWER ON ELECTION DAY - this was really comical.  Sometime in the afternoon the SOE actually lost power for about 20 minutes - which meant they could not resolve voter issues.  I have 8 voters at my precinct alone who had to take provisional ballots as a result.

      One of the reasons early voting is so great is that gives time for voters to cure many of the issues listed above (they can change their address, then can get id).  This is another reason why restricting early voting is so much a part of the GOP effort to restrict voting.

      In general I would say 2012 actually went better than in 2008 in some ways.  Certainly on election day the procedures were better - and things are miles better than in 2000.   Early voting, even when limited, has had a dramatic effect on election day lines.  The precinct I was in probably at most had a 40 minute wait in the morning.  In the evening there was very little wait - and this is a result of early voting.  Typically late voters are Democrats - and this is third cycle when I did not see a late rush just before the precinct close.

      I was in Hillsborough, though, and cannot comment on what happened in Miami-Dade.

      The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

      by fladem on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 11:07:31 AM PST

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    •  That may be different in Ohio but (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gooserock, a2nite

      once if you moved and didn't change your address, you went to your old  address to vote and didn't let on, or you were shit outta luck. Provisionals, which in Ohio are ALWAYS counted in the situation you describe after the former county is called to make sure you did not also vote there (the real and very valid reason for requiring these voters to vote provisionally).

      I saw the result of letting voters "change their address on election day." While it wasn't a huge number, each of us doing poll book check on these particular provisionals in Cuyahoga County (Cleveland, Ohio) found anywhere from 3-6 that a piece that day who voted twice.

      Obviously, page number depends on the number of issues and races. I suspect that Cuyahoga, which seats around 40 judges, not including municipal judges, will always have a longer ballot than tiny Vinton County in south central Ohio — and there's not much that can be done about that.

      Jon Husted is a dick.

      by anastasia p on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 01:19:49 PM PST

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