Governor DeSantis sparks false fear of fraud to suppress opposition votes
Florida Republicans know what it means to fight to win, even at great cost to American stocks.
In 2000, party members knocked on the doors of the Miami-Dade Government Center to intimidate voters in the Bush-Gore race. In 2010, they blatantly cheated by redesigning political constituencies in their favor, only overthrown by a Herculean three-and-a-half-year court battle.
They are doing it again this year, though they never stopped, using their legislative majority to pass laws that place restrictions on drop boxes, mail-in ballot collection and volunteer voter registration campaigns, with Governor Ron DeSantis throwing curve balls out of the mound, presenting the laws as strengthening voter rights and electoral integrity while doing the opposite.
“Florida has taken steps this legislative session to increase transparency and strengthen the security of our elections,” Gov. DeSantis said as he signed Senate Bill 90 in May. “Floridians can rest assured that our state will remain a leader in the integrity of the ballot. Elections must be free and fair, and these changes will ensure that this continues to be the case in the Sunshine State.
The governor welcomed the legislation as an instrument to strengthen the identification of voters, prohibit the massive sending of ballot papers, prohibit the collection of ballot papers (the practice of political agents collecting ballots at the homes of voters) and prohibit private money from administering elections.
But there was never the slightest suspicion of voter fraud that would argue for such restrictions. It’s only the fact that minorities, the elderly, the disabled and other Democratic voters rely on the ease of postal and postal voting to cast their ballots, votes Republicans know would turn out overwhelmingly against a party. who cares little about the social progress of citizens of color and who, it seems, fears it.
Last week, the US Department of Justice sued the state of Texas, where a Republican-led legislature gerrymandered electoral districts to downplay minority voting power. As Boston College professor Heather Cox Richardson noted in her blog Letters from an American, 95 percent of Texas’ population growth over the past decade has come from minorities. While whites now make up just 40 percent of the population, she noted, they make up 60 percent of the districts. It is not by chance.
In Florida, also in the midst of its 10-year redistribution, the Republican-led legislature continues to hold discussions of the remap largely out of public view. The state of the shining sun? Not when it comes to fair and open elections.
The DeSantis administration is waging a legal battle with the federal government to gain US approval required by state voter suppression legislation.
Politico reported that the Department of Justice’s civil rights division filed a “expression of interest” in one of four federal lawsuits challenging a law passed by the Florida legislature this year. The League of Women Voters, the NAACP and other groups argue that Florida law harms elderly, disabled and minority voters.
The state is trying to get the case closed before it goes to trial. DOJ’s response, as Politico described it, is measured and legalistic about his response in Texas but “shows that the Biden administration is paying attention to the Florida law litigation that will unfold as the legislature is about to pass yet another election-related bill at the governor’s request.”
Electoral fairness, although backsliding in Texas, Florida and dozens of other states, has stalled in Washington, DC, reforms, like the For the People Act, remain the victim of obstructionist rules. Senate, despite a strong majority of Americans who put the Biden administration in place in the hope of a return to political integrity. As summarized by the Congressional Research Service, the bill would expand automatic and same-day registration, establish independent redistribution commissions, ensure election security, improve cybersecurity of the electoral system; and require the president, vice-president and candidates for those positions to disclose 10 years of tax returns.
Rather than hamper reasonable progress, Republicans could allay their angst over demographic shifts by showing they care about economic and social fairness. Provide what matters to those who are sincere in their pursuit of uplifting, such as health care and childcare assistance.
But it’s a call to action for liberals and conservatives, at all levels of government, to do the hard work of reclaiming America for democracy. A measured response is pleasant. But it’s time to kick the electoral fraud forgers and restart this country.
This article originally appeared on the Palm Beach Post: Editorial: DeSantis Government Laws and Lawsuits Aim to Limit Black Votes