Reprinted from popularresistance.org
By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers
Voter suppression in the 2020 election has become a topic of great concern. In reality, voter suppression has been part of US politics since the founding of the country. The oligarchs who wrote the US Constitution enabled voter suppression by not including the right to vote in it and only allowing white male property owners to vote, suppressing the votes of 94 percent of the population.
Five of 16 states had white-only voting in 1800 and after 1802, every new state, free or slave, except for Maine banned Black people from voting. In 1807, New Jersey, which originally gave voting rights to "all inhabitants," excluded women and Black men from voting. Maryland banned Jewish people from its polls until 1828. After the Civil War expanded voting rights to Black men, the Black vote was suppressed through intimidation campaigns and Jim Crow laws. After decades of protests, the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965 and voting by Black people increased, but in recent years suppression tactics are reducing that vote.
This year, the Republican Party and President Trump are working to suppress the votes of Black people, the working class, immigrants, and others, especially by attacking the US Postal Service to decrease mail-in voting.
TAKE ACTION: National day to save the Post Office on Tuesday, August 25. Find more information here.
The Democrats are also guilty of voter suppression as they do all they can to keep third parties off the ballot. Green Party presidential nominee Howie Hawkins explains party suppression is voter suppression because millions of people refuse to choose between two Wall Street-funded candidates and so they don't vote. Sanders-Democrats also point to an unfair nomination process resulting in Joe Biden becoming the nominee.
Voter Suppression is Violence, From Cool revolution.
Voter Suppression Today
Voter suppression has gotten more sophisticated in recent elections through the massive de-registering of voters, abuse of voter ID laws, cutting the number of polling places in minority communities, felony disenfranchisement, not counting provisional ballots, and voter intimidation at the polls. In 2020, the battle over mail-in ballots and the Post Office is also a major issue.
On March 30, President Trump said in an interview on FOX, if there was high voter turnout "you'd never have a Republican elected in this country again." Trump was explaining why he opposed more money being spent to help states conduct the 2020 election during the pandemic. More recently, Trump floated the idea of delaying the November 3 election, an idea rejected by even Republican allies and something he does not have the power to do.
Removing people from voter registration lists has become a common practice. A Brennan Center study found that almost 16 million voters were purged from the rolls between 2014 and 2016. Jurisdictions with a history of racial discrimination, which are no longer subject to pre-clearance after the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act in Shelby County v. Holder in 2013, had a median purge rate 40% higher than other jurisdictions.
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