THE BLOG

Democrats Fight Back: Taking On GOP Voter Suppression

10/09/2008 03:50 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

This morning my husband and I proudly mailed in our absentee ballots for our Congresswoman, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, various state and local initiatives, and of course President Barack Obama.

Unfortunately too many Americans still have to fight for the opportunity to vote - and GOP voter suppression efforts are mischief designed to make matters worse.

Indeed, today's New York Times story about voter purges sent a chill down the spine of many an American concerned about voter enfranchisement.

Fortunately, the Democratic National Committee is fighting back - hard - against GOP voter suppression..

Below is an email from DNC legal eagle Joe Sandler, which he has authorized me to blog.

From the email:

The issues raised by the NYT are ones well familiar to the campaign, which has addressed them around the country. Particularly where we see evidence that these "matching" problems are being exploited by the Republicans, with the intention of sowing confusion and blocking access to the polls, we have taken legal action. We are monitoring and responding appropriately on a continuous basis.

It is important to keep in mind the following:

1. Generally, the matching issues have no bearing on voter eligibility. The article regularly confuses matching issues with a "purge".

2. In many cases, there are explanations for the dropping of names without effect on the specific voter: where there are duplicate registrations, for example, resulting from an in-state move, and one of the names and addresses sets is removed.

3. It is not correct that the Social Security Administration expressed concern about voters being "blocked" by the use of SSNs. The SSA letter complained that it was being deluged with verifications that it did not believe it should to perform, a consequence of voters with licenses providing SSNs instead.

The most serious problem is the Republicans' manipulation of this uncertainty and misunderstanding to discourage voters and raise fears of "fraud". The Republican party, in Ohio , Wisconsin and Montana are seizing on matching issues of one kind or the other to manufacture the impression of massive illegal registration and to prepare to challenge voters.

We are winning those fights: a 6,000 voter Republican challenge program in Montana has ended, dropped when the Republicans were hit with lawsuits and public opinion turned hard against them. In Michigan, Republicans are now retreating and denying, under oath in an action filed by OFA and the DNC, that they will be using foreclosure lists to challenge. In Ohio and Wisconsin , we are actively supporting the Secretary of State ( Ohio ) and the responsible state agency ( Wisconsin ) in defending against Republican legal attacks organized around bogus "matching" issues.

Kudos to the DNC and the Obama-Biden campaign for remaining steady at the helm and committed to the resources needed to help America vote.

If anyone has questions regarding your registration status please use this online tool to confirm your status.

26 days to history ... make sure every vote counts!