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What's all the fuss about so-called "Voter Supression"?

TU Curmudgeon

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I don’t see what all the fuss in the US about that so-called “voter suppression” is.

Voting in the US is governed by the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically Article 1 Section 4

The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators.

True, there are three other sections the 15th Amendment

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.​

the 19th Amendment

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.​

and the 26th Amendment

The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​

that deal with voting, but those sections only deal with specific criteria which can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote.

Since there are specific criteria that can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote, and since those criteria WERE, prior to the passing of the 15th, 19th, and 26th Amendments, used to deny persons the right to vote, that implies (and the legal rule of "expressio unius est exclusio alterius" (a principle in statutory construction: when one or more things of a class are expressly mentioned others of the same class are excluded) that any other criterion that is NOT specifically ruled out by the Constitution of the United States of America IS allowable. To give an incredibly silly example, a State could restrict its electorate to “persons having attained a height of 5’ 11” or greater” and that would be “constitutionally allowable” until such time as the Constitution of the United States of America was amended to include
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of height.​

People may not LIKE what is being done to “the right to vote” but they should also realize that, in the United States of America there is (at law) NO SUCH THING. True, it is a “cultural expectation” that people actually have the right to vote, but there is no constitutional, or other legislative, REQUIREMENT that people be allowed to vote. You might want to think of that "cultural expectation" as a "fundamental freedom" (which is a thing that is essential to the form of society that you want to have [and which schoolchildren are taught America has]).

After all, no matter how hard you search the US Constitution you will NOT find
Democratic rights of citizens​
Every citizen of the United States of America has the right to vote in an election of members of the United States of America House of Representatives, the United States of America Senate, or of any legislative assembly of the state wherein they reside and to be qualified for membership therein.​

(Obviously, since Americans do NOT vote for the offices of President or Vice-President, there is no need to have those offices included in that “democratic right”.)

If that “Democratic right of citizens” is what Americans WANT to have, then they had better get off their duffs and pass the appropriate legislation.

The same argument applies to “redistricting”, “location and number of polling places”, “advance voting”, “absentee ballots”, “voting by mail”, “voter ID” and any of the other issues that those people who favor “democratic rights of citizens” have a cultural expectation that they will be implemented so as to increase the ability of the electorate to participate in the electoral process and which those who do not favor “democratic rights of citizens” want to use to restrict the ability of the electorate to participate in the electoral process.

[ASIDE – With regard to “Voter ID” why not simply issue new Social Security cards that have the cardholder’s picture on them? After all, don’t all legally eligible voters already have an SSN, and isn’t that – in reality – a “National Identity Card”, and wouldn’t having the card holder’s picture on the card help to reduce Social Security fraud?]​
 

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That is a wonderful theory. Can we also expect a version that deals with how people behave rather than how ideology works?

For example the fact that barely more than 50% of eligible voters actually vote. And the fact that politicians will fight hard to ensure it remains at or lower that percentage because it makes their life easier.
 

TheParser

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I don’t see what all the fuss in the US about that so-called “voter suppression” is.

Hear! Hear!

There is none.

Some Dems have to keep beating the drums about "voter suppression" in order to prove to a certain group how much they support them.

Pitiful!
 

Craig234

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It's weird how talking to the right is like explaining our system to Martians who just got here, not people who live in this country.

The founding fathers had a more restricted idea about voting. Among other things, they did not think the public needed to vote for US Senators or the president and vice-president. Both were given to the state legislatures to decide.

Later, our country changed to have a broader view of voting. They saw massive corruption in the Senate selection process, and passed a constitutional amendment to give the public the right to elect Senators - something right-wingers often oppose to this day.

And state legislatures decided to allow the public to elect the electors for the president and vice-president to represent their choice, instead of having the legislature decide who the state would support.

The spirit of those changes is in favor of people voting. Republicans passing measures designed to reduce Democratic voters voting, violates the spirit of fair elections. That's the problem our Martians can't understand.

Government has the power to set speed limits for road safety (and limiting fuel consumption if they choose). If a government set the speed limit to 5 MPH in black neighborhoods to hurt black people, that's not just exercising their power to set speed limits, but we could expect the OP to make a thread asking what the problem was.
 

Lutherf

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Since the right to vote is limited to "citizens" then it's perfectly acceptable (if not a damned good idea!) to require those casting a vote to prove their citizenship. It IS NOT "voter suppression" to require proper identification for the purpose of casting a ballot. It IS NOT voter suppression to reduce polling locations in communities where historic voter turnout is low. It IS NOT voter suppression to set a specific time frame in which a ballot can be submitted. It IS NOT voter suppression to ensure that no single person is casting multiple votes or casting votes for multiple people. Just because Joe went out and picked up ballots from all his neighbors DOES NOT mean that Joe then has the right to fill out those ballots and submit them.
 

Phys251

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I don’t see what all the fuss in the US about that so-called “voter suppression” is.

Voting in the US is governed by the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically Article 1 Section 4

The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators.

True, there are three other sections the 15th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.​


the 19th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.​


and the 26th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​


that deal with voting, but those sections only deal with specific criteria which can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote.

Since there are specific criteria that can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote, and since those criteria WERE, prior to the passing of the 15th, 19th, and 26th Amendments, used to deny persons the right to vote, that implies (and the legal rule of "expressio unius est exclusio alterius" (a principle in statutory construction: when one or more things of a class are expressly mentioned others of the same class are excluded) that any other criterion that is NOT specifically ruled out by the Constitution of the United States of America IS allowable. To give an incredibly silly example, a State could restrict its electorate to “persons having attained a height of 5’ 11” or greater” and that would be “constitutionally allowable” until such time as the Constitution of the United States of America was amended to include
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of height.


People may not LIKE what is being done to “the right to vote” but they should also realize that, in the United States of America there is (at law) NO SUCH THING. True, it is a “cultural expectation” that people actually have the right to vote, but there is no constitutional, or other legislative, REQUIREMENT that people be allowed to vote. You might want to think of that "cultural expectation" as a "fundamental freedom" (which is a thing that is essential to the form of society that you want to have [and which schoolchildren are taught America has]).

After all, no matter how hard you search the US Constitution you will NOT find
Democratic rights of citizens​


Every citizen of the United States of America has the right to vote in an election of members of the United States of America House of Representatives, the United States of America Senate, or of any legislative assembly of the state wherein they reside and to be qualified for membership therein.


(Obviously, since Americans do NOT vote for the offices of President or Vice-President, there is no need to have those offices included in that “democratic right”.)

If that “Democratic right of citizens” is what Americans WANT to have, then they had better get off their duffs and pass the appropriate legislation.

The same argument applies to “redistricting”, “location and number of polling places”, “advance voting”, “absentee ballots”, “voting by mail”, “voter ID” and any of the other issues that those people who favor “democratic rights of citizens” have a cultural expectation that they will be implemented so as to increase the ability of the electorate to participate in the electoral process and which those who do not favor “democratic rights of citizens” want to use to restrict the ability of the electorate to participate in the electoral process.

[ASIDE – With regard to “Voter ID” why not simply issue new Social Security cards that have the cardholder’s picture on them? After all, don’t all legally eligible voters already have an SSN, and isn’t that – in reality – a “National Identity Card”, and wouldn’t having the card holder’s picture on the card help to reduce Social Security fraud?]​

The right of the citizens of the United States to vote is protected by more constitutional amendments than any other right.

This right cannot be legally abridged for any reason, real or fictitious.
 

Helix

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the fuss is that the Tweetyists are trying to suppress the vote because they have learned that when more people vote in certain places and it's convenient to do so, they risk losing. they are the party of voter suppression.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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That is a wonderful theory. Can we also expect a version that deals with how people behave rather than how ideology works?

For example the fact that barely more than 50% of eligible voters actually vote. And the fact that politicians will fight hard to ensure it remains at or lower that percentage because it makes their life easier.

Whether or not one EXERCISES a right has nothing whatsoever to do with whether the right exists.

There is, as I explained, no RIGHT to vote in the United States of America.

There is, however, a "cultural expectation" that you are going to be able to vote because (regardless of whether they actually use the term) the American people believe that being able to vote is an "essential freedom" without which their country would not be the country that innocent young school children are taught that it is.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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Hear! Hear!

There is none.

Some Dems have to keep beating the drums about "voter suppression" in order to prove to a certain group how much they support them.

Pitiful!

Didn't actually read the post, I see.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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It's weird how talking to the right is like explaining our system to Martians who just got here, not people who live in this country.

The founding fathers had a more restricted idea about voting. Among other things, they did not think the public needed to vote for US Senators or the president and vice-president. Both were given to the state legislatures to decide.

Later, our country changed to have a broader view of voting. They saw massive corruption in the Senate selection process, and passed a constitutional amendment to give the public the right to elect Senators - something right-wingers often oppose to this day.

And state legislatures decided to allow the public to elect the electors for the president and vice-president to represent their choice, instead of having the legislature decide who the state would support.

The spirit of those changes is in favor of people voting. Republicans passing measures designed to reduce Democratic voters voting, violates the spirit of fair elections. That's the problem our Martians can't understand.

Government has the power to set speed limits for road safety (and limiting fuel consumption if they choose). If a government set the speed limit to 5 MPH in black neighborhoods to hurt black people, that's not just exercising their power to set speed limits, but we could expect the OP to make a thread asking what the problem was.

Please have your staff take your sarcasm detector in for servicing.

BTW, you don't appear to dispute the line of reasoning that holds that "There IS NO RIGHT to vote." in the US (only a "cultural expectation" that one is going to be able to vote).
 

TU Curmudgeon

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Since the right to vote is limited to "citizens" then it's perfectly acceptable (if not a damned good idea!) to require those casting a vote to prove their citizenship. It IS NOT "voter suppression" to require proper identification for the purpose of casting a ballot. It IS NOT voter suppression to reduce polling locations in communities where historic voter turnout is low. It IS NOT voter suppression to set a specific time frame in which a ballot can be submitted. It IS NOT voter suppression to ensure that no single person is casting multiple votes or casting votes for multiple people. Just because Joe went out and picked up ballots from all his neighbors DOES NOT mean that Joe then has the right to fill out those ballots and submit them.

The first error in your post is where you say "since the right to vote ..." when there IS NO SUCH RIGHT.

However, I agree with your basic thesis that, if it perfectly legal to establish "regulations" which have the effect of diminishing the ability of people to actually be able to vote PROVIDED that those restrictions are not specifically based on age, sex, or race.

Heck, you could amend the 26th Amendment so that it read

The right of citizens of the United States, who are -18- 68 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​

and that would NOT be "voter suppression" either.
 

Craig234

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Please have your staff take your sarcasm detector in for servicing.

I think the problem is in the alleged sarcasm.

BTW, you don't appear to dispute the line of reasoning that holds that "There IS NO RIGHT to vote." in the US (only a "cultural expectation" that one is going to be able to vote).

"Rights" have a legal and a moral sense to them, at least. There is no constitutional right to vote for president as I understand it; but there is a moral issue, a cultural issue, regarding it being a right to vote. In other words, most would agree people have a right to vote for president, meaning that it's a moral requirement for them to get to (I suspect most also wrongly think it's a constitutional right).
 

TU Curmudgeon

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The right of the citizens of the United States to vote is protected by more constitutional amendments than any other right.

This right cannot be legally abridged for any reason, real or fictitious.

Actually those three amendments are the ONLY constitutional amendments that "protect the ability of a person to vote".

The Constitution (simpliciter), other than Article 1, Section 4, does not even mention "voting".

Yes, there is a "cultural expectation" that people are going to be able to vote, BUT there is no "Constitutional Protection" for people's overall ability to vote. The three amendments only establish three limited grounds upon which people's ability to vote can NOT be restricted.
 

Grand Mal

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Since the right to vote is limited to "citizens" then it's perfectly acceptable (if not a damned good idea!) to require those casting a vote to prove their citizenship. It IS NOT "voter suppression" to require proper identification for the purpose of casting a ballot. It IS NOT voter suppression to reduce polling locations in communities where historic voter turnout is low. It IS NOT voter suppression to set a specific time frame in which a ballot can be submitted. It IS NOT voter suppression to ensure that no single person is casting multiple votes or casting votes for multiple people. Just because Joe went out and picked up ballots from all his neighbors DOES NOT mean that Joe then has the right to fill out those ballots and submit them.
How long a wait in line to vote is acceptable to you? Serious question. Are you okay with having to line up for an hour to vote?
 

Phys251

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Actually those three amendments are the ONLY constitutional amendments that "protect the ability of a person to vote".

The Constitution (simpliciter), other than Article 1, Section 4, does not even mention "voting".

Yes, there is a "cultural expectation" that people are going to be able to vote, BUT there is no "Constitutional Protection" for people's overall ability to vote. The three amendments only establish three limited grounds upon which people's ability to vote can NOT be restricted.

"The right of the citizens of the United States to vote" is a de jure and a de facto right. Period. There is absolutely nothing to debate there.

Any abridging of the right to vote is unconstitutional.
 

Craig234

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The first error in your post is where you say "since the right to vote ..." when there IS NO SUCH RIGHT.

However, I agree with your basic thesis that, if it perfectly legal to establish "regulations" which have the effect of diminishing the ability of people to actually be able to vote PROVIDED that those restrictions are not specifically based on age, sex, or race.

Heck, you could amend the 26th Amendment so that it read

The right of citizens of the United States, who are -18- 68 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​

and that would NOT be "voter suppression" either.

Yes, it would. Voter suppression is measures designed to reduce voting. That could mean raising the voting age, reducing voting hours and locations, increasing requirements on voting designed to reduce the number of voters, and other measures. You can try to defend any measure, but it's voter suppression. Suppression refers to the intent being to prevent voting, and disingenuous claims of other purposes don't make them legitimate.
 

Phys251

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How long a wait in line to vote is acceptable to you? Serious question. Are you okay with having to line up for an hour to vote?

The honest answer from that one is: Yes, as long as they're Democrats.
 

Craig234

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How long a wait in line to vote is acceptable to you? Serious question. Are you okay with having to line up for an hour to vote?

In my area in California, there is usually no wait, and at most a few minutes, if you go in person.
 

Lutherf

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How long a wait in line to vote is acceptable to you? Serious question. Are you okay with having to line up for an hour to vote?
I'm not OK with that but it does happen from time to time. If in the prior 4 elections your precinct had turnout between 2000-4000 voters and this year, for whatever reason, it has 7,000 then there's going to be a wait. Someone should also have a look at why the turnout blew up so much.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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I think the problem is in the alleged sarcasm.



"Rights" have a legal and a moral sense to them, at least. There is no constitutional right to vote for president as I understand it; but there is a moral issue, a cultural issue, regarding it being a right to vote. In other words, most would agree people have a right to vote for president, meaning that it's a moral requirement for them to get to (I suspect most also wrongly think it's a constitutional right).

The sarcasm consisted solely of the opening. The remainder of the post was solid law.

However, I can see that you are beginning to grasp the difference between a "right" and a "cultural expectation".

The wording of the paragraph on "Democratic rights" in the OP is taken from the constitution of a country where the citizenry believe that their "cultural expectation" that they would be able to vote was an "essential freedom in a free and democratic society" is so strong that they made it a "constitutional right" EVEN THOUGH there was no suspicion that it was under threat.

The US is content to let the citizenry's ability to vote remain a "cultural expectation" WITHOUT making it a "constitutional right". That leads to the conclusion that they do NOT believe that the ability to vote is an "essential freedom in a free and democratic society" regardless of evidence that it is under threat.
 

Grand Mal

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In my area in California, there is usually no wait, and at most a few minutes, if you go in person.
That's the thing, innit? In many places they don't have to wait. In others...
download (10).jpeg
download (11).jpeg
 

Luce

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Actually those three amendments are the ONLY constitutional amendments that "protect the ability of a person to vote".

And then TU split hairs to 1 angstrom in width.
 

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The first error in your post is where you say "since the right to vote ..." when there IS NO SUCH RIGHT.

However, I agree with your basic thesis that, if it perfectly legal to establish "regulations" which have the effect of diminishing the ability of people to actually be able to vote PROVIDED that those restrictions are not specifically based on age, sex, or race.

Heck, you could amend the 26th Amendment so that it read

The right of citizens of the United States, who are -18- 68 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​

and that would NOT be "voter suppression" either.

The Constitution sure spends a lot of time talking about imaginary rights.

Fifteenth Amendment:

Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.

Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation

Nineteenth Amendment:

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.[1]

Twenty-sixth Amendment:

Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age.

Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
 

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I don’t see what all the fuss in the US about that so-called “voter suppression” is.​
Aside from the Constitutionally required decennial census/redistricting, which has been at the heart of many outrageous acts of gerrymandering, deliberately disenfranchising minorities for many decades, the recent rush of Republican voter suppression (a real thing) laws are happening at the state level, thanks to the 10th amendment.
Voting in the US is governed by the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically Article 1 Section 4

The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators.

True, there are three other sections the 15th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.​


the 19th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.​


and the 26th Amendment
The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.​


that deal with voting, but those sections only deal with specific criteria which can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote.​
Wrong. The 15th and 19th amendments, granted the right to vote to African Americans and women, respectively. The two classes of citizens were previously not permitted to vote.

There’s a distinct difference from denying someone a right that they didn’t have before, and granting someone a right.

And the 26th amendment was enacted simply to lower the federal age requirement to vote. The only mechanism to accomplish that.
Since there are specific criteria that can NOT be used to deny a person the right to vote, and since those criteria WERE, prior to the passing of the 15th, 19th, and 26th Amendments, used to deny persons the right to vote, that implies (and the legal rule of "expressio unius est exclusio alterius" (a principle in statutory construction: when one or more things of a class are expressly mentioned others of the same class are excluded) that any other criterion that is NOT specifically ruled out by the Constitution of the United States of America IS allowable.​
Here you go again with your nonsensical, misinterpretation of our Constitution.

Our Constitution is a living document, meaning that it was deliberately written to allow for the many changes our forefathers were wise enough to foresee.

Our legal system does not operate under a system of “if a thing isn’t specifically mentioned in the Constitution, it is permissible”.

That is why we have SCOTUS. Interpreting law, according to our Constitution, and rendering decisions is the primary purpose of the high court.


Before opining on another’s country’s voting system, especially from an obviously biased position, get your facts straight.
 

maxparrish

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I don’t see what all the fuss in the US about that so-called “voter suppression” is.

Voting in the US is governed by the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically Article 1 Section 4

The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators. ...

Aside from you point, "voter suppression" legislation is left-wing code for "please don't protect the non-voters from repeated left wing harassment" legislation. The left would luv to run elections like publisher's clearing house, mass mailings of untracked and unsolicited ballots with a chance to win cell phones or a free vacation to Cuba or even a million bucks from the DNC.
Indeed, their whole idea of a republic's democracy is to harass, bribe or strong-arm the indifferent, no information non voters to vote - to pepper them with ballots, real or Xeroxed, so their minions can go door to door offering to "help" fill out the ditto machined ballots, or simply take the blanks off the hands of the apathetic for producing those "extra votes".

So to not support this nonsense is called "voter suppression"...LOL....
 
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