Monday, October 21, 2013

Texas Republicans Have a Plan to Stop “Gov.” Wendy Davis: Female Voter Suppression

From Occupy Democrats, courtesy of somebody on facebook:
"Think Progress reports that as of November 5, Texans must show a photo ID with their up-to-date legal name. It sounds like such a small thing, but according to the Brennan Center for Justice, only 66% of voting age women have ready access to a photo document that will attest to proof of citizenship. This is largely because young women have not updated their documents with their married names, a circumstance that doesn’t affect male voters in any significant way. Suddenly 34% of women voters are scrambling for an acceptable ID, while 99% of men are home free.

As of November 5, a birth certificate is not enough. Women voters will have to show legal proof of a name change: a marriage license, a divorce decree, or court ordered change; and they have to be the original documents. No photocopies allowed. This means thousands of women face the hassle of figuring out what they need and how to get it. Then they face at least a $20 fee, more if a woman doesn’t have the time to stand in line and wants it mailed. As a result, many women who are eligible to vote, won’t."

More here.

I don't think the article is clear about whether this is a brand spanking new provision of recently passed Texas voter ID laws, or whether people have only just now figured out how it's going to affect women voters in Texas.  Either way, though, it's an atrocity.  Over a third of eligible women voters in Texas are disenfranchised in one fell swoop.  That's just plain wrong.

You know, I'm totally disgusted with always having to explain how this Republican voter ID obsession is total bullshit.  But their ostensible justification, stopping "voter fraud," seems reasonable if you don't know much about it.  So explain again I will.  Bottom line: there is no "voter fraud."  It is so rare, and on such a small scale, that it is literally statistically insignificant, which is to say that it never affects election outcomes.  For that matter, as the article observes, the effort and organizing needed to pull off such a stunt successfully pretty much guarantees failure.  That is, you have to have hundreds of people going from precinct to precinct on election day, all of them pretending to be someone else each time, in order to have any discernible effect on an election outcome.  And they've all got to stay quiet about it.  Forever.  I don't even know if the Mafia could have succeeded with this in their heyday.  I mean, somebody's bound to catch on.  Success, then, is doomed to ultimate failure.  It's a virtually impossible scenario.  

In short, "voter fraud" is so rare as to be non-existent.  And it's so difficult to actually do in a meaningful way that all these voter ID laws are just bogus.  No way around that.  Republican voter ID law supporters must be either totally stupid or total liars.  Probably a mix of both.

Clearly, voter ID laws have nothing to do with the non-problem of "voter fraud."  But they are really effective with something else.  They make it a lot more difficult, impossible, even, in many cases, for poor people, black people, old people, Hispanic people, and now apparently female people to vote.  We have these damnable laws to stop a problem that doesn't exist, which at the same time disenfranchise millions nationwide, millions who the Republicans think are likely Democratic voters.  Consequently, voter ID laws must necessarily be about Republicans stealing elections. 

And the GOP doesn't give two shits if we have to return to the nineteenth century, when blacks and women alike couldn't vote, in order to do it.  Racist and sexist at the same time.  Don't even TRY to tell me I'm wrong about that--you take away the vote from black people and women, you're racist and sexist.  

Anybody who supports these infernal voter ID laws needs to be behind bars for treason.