A massive Republican campaign likely to suppress minority and low-income voting is under way. If it works, the GOP may be able to prevent many millions of Americans, largely Democrats, from voting — potentially affecting 171 electoral votes.
By HERMAN SCHWARTZ | politico.com
Though right-wing efforts to suppress low-income and minority voting have a long history, the current GOP campaign seems unprecedented in scope, organization and ambition.
Public attention has focused on the new state photo ID requirements. But many other new and not-so-new devices have been instituted across the nation. These include: cutbacks in the days available for pre-Election Day voting, making it harder to assist voters with registration, eliminating Election Day registration and requiring proof of citizenship to either register or vote.
Not all these measures will likely survive court challenges. The 14th and 15th amendments and the 1965 Voting Rights Act bar discrimination and other interference with voting in all elections. In addition, Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act requires preclearance for nondiscrimination by either the Justice Department or a federal court before certain states — including South Carolina, Alabama, Texas and parts of Florida and North Carolina — can change any voting procedures.
Nonetheless, perhaps most of these voter-suppression devices will survive. Here are some details of what we can expect to see: