The Real Reason Dems are Losing? Decimation of Voting Rights
Let's drill down on the numbers in the graph above.
- Total number of Americans eligible to vote - 218,959,000
- Total number of Americans registered to vote - 146,311,000
- Total number of Americans who voted in the 2012 Presidential election - 129,235,000
73 million eligible voters are not registered to vote. This is the third largest block of "voters" in the US, comprising more individual votes than were cast for either Trump or Clinton in the 2016 General Election. The question that needs to be asked, and asked until we get a good answer, is WHY? Why did all these people just not bother to register and excercise their voting priviledge?
17 million "registered voters" just simply did not vote (2012 numbers). Again according to Statistic Brain the top reasons for registered voters not voting are as follows:
- Too busy conflicting schedule - 17.5 %
- Illness or disability - 14.9 %
- Not interested - 13.4 %
- Did not like candidates or campaign issues - 12.9 %
- Other - 11.3 %
- Out of town - 8.8 %
- Don't know - 7 %
- Registration problems - 6 %
- Inconvenient polling place - 2.7 %
- Transportation problems - 2.6 %
- Forgot - 2.6 %
- Bad weather - 0.2 %
Back in 2007, ePluribus Media staff writers wrote a series of articles about the dismantling of voting rights in the US, describing the tools of the trade for voter supression. This dismantling started in earnest under President Cheney -- oops -- President Bush. There was a concerted effort to wipe as many people as possible off the voting rolls, especially POC. They used a variety of tools to accomplish this ... caging, gutting the Civil Righs Division, gerrymandering and now we have CrossCheck.
You will find links to the 2007 ePluribus Media articles below and I encourage everyone to educate themselves on Voting Rights.
Fully understanding a problem requires reading, sometimes LOTS of reading. The erosion of our Voting Rights is not something that can be explained in 140 character increments. It is a complex problem and the erosion is coming from many directions at once.
Greg Palast has been writing about this for over a decade and we still aren't paying attention.
What we do know is that there is a program called Crosscheck implemented in 27 states that serves to disqualify voters who are not qualified to vote, trying to vote multiple times, or trying to defraud the electoral system. And if Palast's reporting (and interview of Kobach) is accurate, that system is primarily being used to disenfranchise large numbers of African American, Hispanic and Asian voters.
We recognize the problem, it has been discussed ad infinitum for over a decade and yet, the problem is not being solved it has been magnified. The destruction of these basic rights is cause for alarm! Why isn't anybody sounding the alarm? Why aren't we doing something to stem these purges?
Blast from the Past - a commentary from ClammyC - The republican War on Voting Rights
It’s long past time to talk about this whole “election integrity/voter fraud/voter ID/election fraud/ballot fraud” matter in a very different way. Consider the following hurdles that have not been overcome when talking about the need for wholesale election reform:
Investigative journalist Greg Palast, one of the most vigorous of all progressive reporters and winner of six Project Censored Awards, originally brought story of the "caging lists" from Duval County, Florida to widespread attention in his report for an October 26th, 2004 BBC Newsnight program. By doing so, he tried to open up a conversation critical to the future of voting rights in America. "Caging" may be just one way of manipulating the voting roles, but it is possible to use it for keeping a percentage of the poorer, less stable potential voters from exercising their rights.
Popper joined the Voting Section of the Justice Department at the beginning of 2006 during the wave of new hires that replaced attorneys who were allegedly forced out because they were not "loyal partisans" and replaced by members of organizations such as the Republican National Lawyers Association and Federalist Society. As Special Litigation Counsel, Popper’s charter is to be one of the chief "enforcers" of the Voting Rights Act. Ironically, Popper has been involved in at least a half-dozen cases which purportedly tried to accomplish exactly the opposite of guaranteeing the rights of those he has been charged with protecting.
But Jim Crow, like the Dark Lord in the popular Harry Potter children's books, never completely died. And the resurrection, assisted by the seeding of political appointees and agreeable new hires within the very government institutions designed to protect the civil rights of Americans, is now dangerously close at hand.
The Civil Rights Division under the Bush Administration has been turned inside out -- in the same manner as the Clean Air Act, Clear Skies Initiative and the Healthy Forest Initiative, all of which legislate the very opposite of what their titles suggest. Instead of protecting the civil and voting rights of minorities, the Division seems to be employing twin engines of an attack on our elections system ...