In a Sept. 6 letter (Winona Daily News), Jerry Papenfuss asked me for examples of Republican voter-suppression laws.
Here’s an incomplete list, in direct quotes from The Center for American Progress and The Brennan Center for Justice:
“In 2018 in North Carolina, . . . when Republican lawmakers knew that, despite their gerrymandering, they had lost their veto-proof majorities in the next session, the Legislature quickly passed a bill implementing the new requirements -- which made exceptions but ‘declined to allow voters to use the types of photo IDs that Black voters were more likely to possess.’”
“Republican lawmakers in the Michigan Legislature blocked several bills between 2011 and 2016 that would have made it easier to register and vote. . . .Thus, it was unusually difficult for some Michigan residents to register and vote -- particularly young people.”
“In 2012, Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled Legislature followed a familiar tactic in the voter suppression playbook -- it passed a strict voter ID law requiring all Pennsylvania voters to present a specific form of identification, such as a driver’s license or passport, when showing up to vote. . . .Voter ID laws have repeatedly been shown to discriminate against people of color, low-income Americans, young people, the elderly and people with disabilities.”
“In Wisconsin, gerrymandering shifted control of the state Assembly outright in 2018, from Democrats who won a majority of the statewide votes to Republicans who fell short of a majority. In the Senate, Democrats fell 1 percent short of a majority of the vote, likely because of aggressive voter suppression targeting communities that disproportionately support Democrats.”
“The most noteworthy restrictions that passed in 2019 are in Florida . . . and Tennessee . . . Arizona, Indiana and Texas also signed new restrictions into law.”
So, yes, Mr. Papenfuss, Republican-controlled legislatures do indeed pass voter-suppression laws.
Steve Schild, Winona
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