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Kerry: Voter Caging Should Be Outlawed

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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 12:04 PM
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Kerry: Voter Caging Should Be Outlawed

Senate Legislation Would End Frivolous Challenges to Voter Eligibility

Washington, D.C. Senator John Kerry today, along with 12 other Senators, co-sponsored legislation aimed at preventing the practice of voter caging, a long-recognized voter suppression tactic which has often been used to target minority voters.

The practice of caging is reprehensible and has absolutely no place in our democracy. Here in America, every citizen, regardless of race, gender, religion or sexual orientation has the right to cast his or her vote. These are the very foundations of our democracy and this bill will ensure that we protect fundamental freedoms for millions of voters across our country, said Senator Kerry.

Caging is a voter suppression tactic in which a political party, campaign, or other entity sends mail marked do not forward or return to sender to a targeted group of voters often minorities or residents of minority neighborhoods. A list of those whose mail was returned undelivered is then used as the basis for challenges to the right of those citizens to vote, on the grounds that the voter does not live at the address where he or she is registered. There are many reasons that mail could be returned undelivered, however; an eligible voter could be overseas on active military service or a student registered at a parents address.

There is evidence that caging lists were assembled in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania during the 2004 elections, possibly intended as the basis for massive voter eligibility challenges. The Florida incident made headlines again earlier this year during Congresss investigation into the firing of several U.S. Attorneys, when allegations resurfaced that Tim Griffin, the former RNC opposition researcher then serving as an interim U.S. Attorney in Arkansas, had been involved in an effort to cage voters in Jacksonville.

The Caging Prohibition Act would prohibit challenges to a persons eligibility to register to vote, or cast a vote, based solely on returned mail or a caging list. The bill would also mandate that anyone who challenges the right of another citizen to vote must set forth the specific grounds for their alleged ineligibility, under penalty of perjury.

Senators Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Barack Obama (D-Ill.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) joined Kerry as cosponsors of the Caging Prohibition Act. To date, the bill has also been endorsed by the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law, the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and People for the American Way.

More along with interesting videos here.

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BlueIris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 12:06 PM
Response to Original message
1. Kick.
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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 03:30 PM
Response to Original message
2. Kick! n/t
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 04:02 PM
Response to Original message
3. Easy solution: Anybody caught doing this should be executed for treason.
Edited on Tue Nov-06-07 04:03 PM by Evoman
(on edit: tongue in cheek...I'm actually against death penalty).
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