September 20, 2005

"Cannonfire" Critiques Baker-Carter Commission Whitewash

This from the excellent "Cannonfire" blog:

"The Baker/Carter election reform report

"The report is a sham, of course. The right pressed for its agenda, which became the primary action item -- and the only recommendation likely to be implemented: Photo ID cards for voters. This idea was wafted aloft by a series of GOP canards and pushed by such front groups as the notorious ACVR.

"Congressmen John Conyers and John Lewis are mounting an aggressive campaign against this measure, which will right no wrongs but which will discriminate against minorities and the poor.

"The nationwide voter ID requirement endorsed by the Carter/Baker Commission would inevitably disenfranchise minority voters and the most vulnerable among us -- those who live in poverty and the elderly. As a whole, the national ID requirement would place steep new hurdles in place for more than ten percent of voters, who currently do not have a photo identification card but are otherwise eligible to vote.

"Millions of people simply have no need of a driver's license. Many of the impoverished are afraid to request one -- for one thing, they're afraid of making personal information available to creditors and the law.

"If you're among those who snarl "Yeah? So what?", I would remind you that at one time, right-wingers -- to their credit -- decried the very concept of a national ID card. (Any such proposal used to cause the rightists to mutter dark warnings about "the mark of the Beast." I kind of miss those days.) In every recent election, GOP activists have sent out deceptive flyers which attempt to convince the poor and the black that they cannot vote if they have any unpaid rent or traffic tickets. The current scheme is simply an extension of that vile tactic.

Complete text of blog post.

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