In celebration of #GivingTuesday, we've been sharing a look at just some of what the League has done to increase political participation and strengthen our democracy -- and our country -- in 2013.
A simple before-and-after turnout test won't ever be up to the task. It's bad math that leads to bad legal analysis. Think of it as cotton-candy statistics: It looks tempting, at least at first, but there's absolutely no substance to it. It should not be used to gum up the conversation.
Folks, we are gearing up for midterm elections and that means that you should be aware of your rights. There are some real bad actors out there trying to implement laws to stop eligible people, including women, from voting.
Didn't we win this one already? ...
The Supreme Court decisions on voting and affirmative action at the University of Texas, the Senate's vote on immigration and the People's filibuster that killed a bill set to all but outlaw abortion in Texas, are all part of a strategy to take Texas and the nation backwards and keep power in the hands of a few.
The most powerful impact of the Supreme Court's decision on Voting Rights may not be on the size of the minority vote. Instead, its most profound -- and insidious -- effect may reside in the weight it lends to an emergent narrative that racism is no longer a serious problem and that the real threat to equal justice now is "reverse discrimination" against whites.
Voters under the age of 30 turned out in record numbers in last year's election. But many of those young voters might not have been able to participate at all if the Supreme Court's recent ruling striking down a crucial part of the federal Voting Rights Act had been in effect last year.
As history has shown, radical Republicans won't be content with stealing the vote from the black guy down the street or that Latina woman at church or the college student next door or the senior citizen who relinquished his driver's license. They're coming for your right, too.
Absent gross mischief to hold down or dilute minority voting, key southern states are on track to shift from red to purple, (Texas, Georgia) and from purple to blue (Florida, North Carolina, Virginia). Other states that used to be reliably Republican such as Colorado are becoming more heavily Democratic thanks both to shifting demographics and changing views on social issues. So we have quite simply a race between demographic and ideological change and flat-out voter suppression. In the 1960s, thanks to the civil rights movement, the liberal wing of a still moderate Republican Party, and Lyndon Johnson's legendary arm-twisting, the great civil rights acts of 1964, 1965 and 1968 passed Congress with a lot of Republican support. It was the Democrats who were split between northern progressives and diehard segregationist Dixiecrats. Today, however, the obstructionists and vote suppressors are all Republicans. Ultimately, this will not be lost on a changing electorate. The forces of anti-democracy have won this round, but if the progressive movement gets itself organized, this victory for Republicans will be Pyrrhic.
Here's a fantastic example of cognitive dissonance. On Tuesday, Republicans continued their collective screeching about the rapidly fizzling IRS non-scandal and how the government unfairly targeted conservatives, while also applauding a ruling which allows Republican-controlled states to deliberately target and disenfranchise Democrats.
The gridlock that plagues Washington leads many, fairly or unfairly, to lump together the two parties and declare a pox on both their houses. But most state governments are not gridlocked.
The responsibility to ensure voter protection should not depend on attorneys willing to challenge discriminatory laws; the federal government must ensure equal justice in access to the polls.
If Republicans write the rules... ...
For the right-wing, shooting must be protected from any restrictions. Voting, however, must be as restricted as possible.
Our politicians have been able to convince the voting public that ideas that are clearly not in the public's best interest are the only things protecting them from Armageddon.