Voting rights are the cornerstone of our Democracy* Without all eligible citizens afforded the right and ability to vote our country crumbles away into plutocracy, kleptocracy and dictatorship.
The Republican party has been mounting a concerted effort to keep people from the polls. They purge voting records, leaving those stricken off to have to challenge why they are disenfranchised (usually only when it is too late). They cut voting hours. They make sure that Democratic districts have fewer machines and longer lines to discourage people from waiting to vote. They oppose motor-voter registration. They oppose forcing employers to let staff have time off to vote. They have goons intimidate people going to vote, threatening potential voters with jail. They scream voter fraud, when there have been about six recorded cases out of a billion votes cast in this country. They oppose voting machines having a paper trail that can be audited so that votes can be accurately counted.
Every single action that can be done to undermine voting in this country, Republicans do. It is the most shameful act one can do to undermine a system of government for the people, by the people and of the people. One wonders why the Republicans need to do this. It almost seems that they think that their ideas are so bereft of attraction and value to the typical American that they need to cheat to win.
Here is what needs to happen. We must have standard voting machines issued nationwide, with the ability to generate a paper trail for auditing. We must distribute them based on population. We must allow same-day voter registration, vote by mail, and early voting. Lastly the general election must be a national holiday for voting. Let it be Veterans Day– what better way to honor the sacrifice vets made for our nation? (Also make it in the middle of the week so people can’t treat the day as a part of a vacation weekend).
As your congressman I will sponsor legislation to make Voting Day a national holiday, and push for a second voting rights act to address the above concerns and fix issues that were not included or gutted from the original Voting Rights Act.
*Don’t let anyone fool you with that “we are a republic, not a democracy jive”. While this is technically true, this is code to justify minimizing direct voter participation and encourage a rule by what the speaker thinks is elite. Little “d” democracy is at work all the time. Cherish it and let it bloom.