Home > posts > Panel For Vote Fraud Starts at Net Roots Nation
June 9th, 2012 2:34 pm
Panel For Vote Fraud Starts at Net Roots Nation

Led by: Ari Berman

Panelists: Sen. Ben CardinRep. Keith EllisonKeesha GaskinsEric MarshallHeather Smith

Ari Berman (?) of The Nation starts panel by mocking FL Gov. Rick Scott for trying to enforce laws to remove ineligible voters from rolls.

In addition to Sen. Ben Cardin, U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison (Minnesota) also on panel, along with others whose names I did not get. Sorry.

Berman says 31 states have passed laws to “restrict access to ballots at every stage of the voting process.”

Only 86 convictions of vote fraud from 2002-2007. [QH: I think that number is bogus; I’ll check.]

Thirty seven times more likely to die from lightning than to commit vote fraud.

Litany of oppression continues. Cue violins.

“…. efforts to purge voter rolls….  a very scary effort.”

mantra is to fight “restrictive voting laws.”

Keesha Gaskins: “A perfect storm of events” leading to restrictive laws…. Supreme Court retrenchment on voting rights. … single party control….

Cardin: “we come here and we see the energy and it really does energize us….. This issue should not be a surprise to us. … Democrats truly believe that we are better off with more people participating in the political process.”  …. brags about making it easier for military to vote…  huh?

“These laws are the new Jim Crow laws of our time… a little more subtle today, but they are aimed at restricting the ability to vote of certain voters who are more likely to vote for [liberals].”

“The Koch brothers are financing those operations.

“These are deliberate efforts to affect the outcome of elections rather than the integrity of elections.”

Ellison: “This whole fight can be describe din one word: Power. They want power. …. This has nothing to do with fraud. …. The big issue is about power. … We can disprove their lies…. They are trying to take power away…. If they can shrink the size of the electorate and get people to vote how they want to } in vote…. 78% of Af American men of [certain age] in Milwaukee don’t have ID [according to Brennan Center].

Berman: “This isn’t new.” compares rhetoric of right on voter ID to rhetoric against civil rights in the 1960s (!!!). “Some of what is happening now is not far off from the ugly tactics that happened in the past.” (somehow comparess voter ID to “poll tax.”)

“The lack of proof is stunning [in terms of proof of actual fraud etc.].”

Panelist named Heather Smith: “To keep them [young and minority voters] away from the polls.”

Berman: “The narrative on the right was the ACORN stole the election for Barack Obama.” {REALLY???}

Official schedule online describes panel (called “The War on Voting”) thusly:

In 2011 we witnessed the most significant rollback of voting rights since the passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965, with conservative legislators and governors passing laws in more than a dozen states to restrict access to the ballot. These laws included requiring proof of citizenship to register to vote, restricting voter registration drives, curtailing early voting, disenfranchising ex-felons and mandating government-issued photo identification to cast a ballot. These tactics harken back to the days when Dixiecrats used poll taxes and literacy tests to bar black Southerners from voting. According to the non-partisan Brennan Center for Justice, the new laws could make it significantly harder for more than 5 million eligible voters to cast ballots in 2012, with young, minority, low-income and disabled voters hit the hardest. This panel will look at the voter suppression tactics conservatives are employing and how to fight back to defend democracy.

Keesha: “When we talk about the attempt to retain power in the face of shifting demographics…..”    “We need to get the truth out that there really isn’t voter fraud.”

[check into legislation by Cardin and Ellison]

Cardin: “It’s a question as to whether our elections are as open as they need to be…. It really does call into question what we really believe in…. The impact this has is a stain on our democracy….. This is not entirely new. I go back to the problems we had in the Bush years when we had lax enforcement of the laws. [NOT true, by the way — QH]  …. The net impact is that this will impact the availability of millions of people…. as high as 7 million who will be denied the ability to vote…. This is an intentional effort. It is not that much more subtle than the Jim Crow laws…. This is very serious.”

Eric Marshall: Even Wisconsin law allowing same-day registration isn’t fair because it requires too much proof of residence. (!!!!!)

Heather Smith:Left keeps winning in court, but “What we’ve lost is the incredible amount of time, energy and resources fighting these laws.” “It has shifted our focus, our time and our energy.”

65% of 18 and 19 year-olds in the country do not have drivers’ licenses. (?!?!?!?!?) “They are taking public transit, they are walking, they don’t have the money to drive cars.”

“This is just another example of how this system doesn’t work for us…. It just got more confusing and more hard.”

Berman: Question for all: What can be done?

Keesha Gaskins: “Litigation.” (but we have “an exponentially heavier lift” to register people when these laws are here) Legislation. Educate voters.

Sen. Cardin: “What we need to do first is support the Department of Justice in their enforcement…. pass  Democracy Restoration Act (for ex-felons to vote) (ex-felons “generally less sympathetic to Republicans”…..

Rep. Ellison pushed “same-day registration act” to FORCE states to have same-day registration. … “Overturn Citizens United.”

The 1866 hour vote hot line?

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