Deliberately making it harder to vote

The efforts to make voting harder in the US tends to disproportionately affect poorer people who have less discretionary time and money to enable them to overcome the hurdles being placed on showing eligibility to vote. Although Republicans claim that this is to prevent voter fraud (something that is a negligible or even non-extent problem), that the real purpose of these efforts is to make voting harder for certain groups is pretty much beyond dispute.

Seth Meyers looks at some of the results of these efforts.

We are reaching the stage where I would not be surprised to see fights breaking out in polling places as infuriated citizens decide that enough is enough and take it out on polling officials.


  1. says

    I would not be surprised to see fights breaking out in polling places as infuriated citizens decide that enough is enough and take it out on polling officials

    I’m gonna have to learn to knit, I suppose.

  2. bargearse says

    Marcus Ranum @ 2

    And people called me crazy for starting a tumbrel hire business. Who’s laughing now?

  3. Robert,+not+Bob says

    Fights at polling places are more likely to be started by TP’ers engaging in voter-suppression themselves.

  4. says

    This is how the wealthy want it. If you can’t afford to pay the poll tax, you don’t have the right to vote. It’s now only the right of those who have money.

  5. sonofrojblake says

    How is it even constitutional to revoke someone’s right to vote?

    They’re not disputing your right to vote. They’re disputing that the person standing in the polling station is you.

  6. says

    #6: They’re not disputing your right to vote.

    I was thinking of the whole “get convicted of a felony, you lose your right to vote” thing. Sorry, my mind was skipping ahead a few tracks.

  7. Golgafrinchan Captain says

    @sonofrojblake #6 & Marcus Ranum #8,

    It is true that these voter ID laws aren’t technically removing people’s right to vote but, in many cases they are effectively removing people’s right to vote. There is no shortage of stories of people trying to get the proper ID and being unable to; all to solve a problem that doesn’t really exist (voter fraud). Plus, there have been multiple republican leaders explicitly stating that they were using the ID laws to swing elections in their favour.

    Canada’s ID laws are pretty flexible, even allowing another voter to attest that they know you if you don’t have any ID with your address*.

    Regarding the long line-ups… In all my years of voting, I have never had more than a 5 minute wait to vote, even in the years when we had 80%’ish voter turnout.

    *still a problem for homeless people, who should have the ability to vote.

  8. Nick Gotts says

    In the UK, we currently have an interesting “hoist by his own petard” situation. David Cameron, during the 2010-15 coalition government, pushed through a change to how electoral registration works. It used to be done on a household basis; now, every eligible individual has to register independently. The predictable -- and predicted -- result has been a significant drop in the number of those registered, estimated at 800,000, disproportionately among the young. This almost certainly helped the Tories gain an overall majority in 2015. However, Cameron now wants us to vote to stay in the EU in the referendum he organised to sidestep strife within his own party -- where the majority of MPs and activists want to leave. But support for staying in declines steadily with age (along with support for the Tory party). In a close vote (which the current polls suggest is likely), this could cost him victory in the referendum -- and his job.

  9. Randall Lee says

    What amazes me more than people’s willingness to stand in line to vote is people’s willingness to either knowingly or unknowingly accept the illusion that if they change masters every few years this will somehow change the fact that they remain slaves.

  10. Golgafrinchan Captain says

    @ Randall Lee,

    I don’t think it’s quite as bleak as that. Yes, the system is f’ed up but it actually does matter (far less than it should) who’s in charge.

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