This Week's Poll from the Lester & Charlie Institute of Forward Thinking!
Last week -- just in time for Independence Day -- we showed you the immediate and dire consequences of the Supreme Court scrapping Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 when we published Alabama's new and outrageous "civic literacy" voter quiz. Unsurprisingly, just about everyone who took the test -- designed to disenfranchise "undesirable" voters -- failed miserably.
Our "quiz," it turns out, wasn't that much of an exaggeration of what really started happening in conservative bastions all over the country. Wasting no time after the SCOTUS ruling, Texas -- the only state in the union that tolerates people voting from outer space -- immediately reinstated an odious voter-ID provision to keep people here on Earth in their place and out of the polls. Once upon a time (read: last week), this would have triggered some federal oversight.
But now that states with a history of abusive behavior toward minority voters can change voting laws without getting "preclearance" from, well, anybody, there's nothing anybody can do about it.
North Carolina -- not to be outdone by Texas! -- isn't just gearing up to push its own voter-ID law but to ban early voting and same-day registration. Unlike the state's voter-ID laws, which can hide behind the façade of reducing (non-existent) voter fraud, laws to ban early voting and same-day registration are nothing but discriminatory. Maybe they should save themselves the trouble of all this legislation and just carry all the ballot boxes into the "Whites Only" men's room.
But that's not all, folks. Rumor has it that Republicans in North Carolina are eager to re-introduce a bill that would levy a de facto tax hike (yes, a tax! from a Republican!) on families whose college-aged kids want to vote where they study rather than at home. Anyone whose kid registers to vote at any address other than Mom's or Dad's "will not be allowed to claim the voter as a dependent for state income tax purposes," says the bill introduced by Republican Rep. Bill King.
This kind of nonsense -- an attempt to keep the vote away from those troublesome kids studying those threatening liberal arts -- was roundly rejected by the Supreme Court in 1979. But SCOTUS has sunk a long way since then. Today, this is just an awesome way to elect conservatives who apparently don't think they can get elected otherwise.
Republicans everywhere are salivating over the brave new world of opportunities available to them to block the vote for any demographic that may lean Democratic. So what's next? Without federal oversight, what do YOU think voters in Red States can look forward to?
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