Election officials across the nation are taking to the airwaves and interwebs to scream “HELP WANTED!” before the November 2016 election. Click on your state to find appropriate contact information for your local elections office. Then, tell them that you’re ready to volunteer!
So, what’s the status of voter ID in Texas and Wisconsin?
This week proves yet again that when it rains, it pours. We started with a recent court ruling in Wisconsin allowing affidavits to be signed in cases where individuals are not able to provide sufficient photo identification. There’s good and bad news here. The good – Badger State voters know exactly how their voter ID law is going to be applied this fall, and they have a few months left to get accustomed to the new reality. The bad – affidavits do not protect against abuse. As the federal races in the state heat up, (and trust us, they will), these accommodations will only invite more funny business.
Texas is a bit different -- with much more drama to come. On Wednesday, the full U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals handed Texas a decision that’s essentially a mixed bag. The Court found that: the law was not written with discriminatory intent, nor was it designed to be a poll tax. However, it also found that: the law may carry some discriminatory effects that must be mitigated BEFORE November 2016. What the temporary remedy will look like is still being left up to the same federal district court judge that just saw almost all of her original ruling overturned. We’ll keep you posted on what comes next.
Bottom line: Voter ID laws are still in place in both states, but some watering-down has occurred.
TTV Founder Catherine Engelbrecht stressed what we can do to help prevent fraud:
“Recent court actions to water down these laws will very likely invite more chicanery. Election integrity policies alone do not prevent or protect against voter fraud and irregularity. Our polling places must be operated and observed by Americans who understand the rules and are willing to enforce them. It’s time to step up … Whether voters have the benefit of a voter ID law enforced in their state or not, their help is needed in the polling place.”
Schedule a TTV speaker today!
Just in time for the height of the 2016 Election, True the Vote has fanned out staff and speakers around the southern and southeastern United States -- with more to come. Do you have a meeting or conference coming up and would like to book a speaker on the subject of election integrity? We’ve streamlined the request process with a form now available on the website, here. We can’t wait to attend your next event!
Where do the various legal attacks against election integrity stand around the country?
Having a hard time keeping track of all the lawsuits looking to dilute election integrity laws or incite whole new forms of chaos? TTV has the scoop. Here’s a summary of where things stand in the various states fighting it out in court.
Texas: The voter ID law has been remanded to the district court to finally determine a remedy for voters without ID to cast a ballot. The law was not struck down.
Wisconsin: A federal judge ruled that if you have an ID, you must show it. If you don’t, you must swear that you could not obtain one in time for the election.
North Carolina: The trial date for the voter ID lawsuit is set for September, which is VERY late. There’s a fair chance that, regardless of how that case goes, the voter ID law will still be in effect this November.
Ohio: Legal challenges to keep Golden Week and the early voting schedule as is were successful. Ohio voters wanting to know when early voting begins and ends can check here.
Kansas: The dual-registration system that separates those who’ve proven their U.S. citizenship when they registered to vote and those who have not was recently challenged. By all appearances, the case is on a fast-track, but it’s still early. We’ll keep you updated.
What can you do now?
Feeling a little overwhelmed or unsure of how to start fighting back? Again, TTV has important resources available to help you, and we know how to put you to work.
Online Training: If you haven’t signed up with the TTV Knowledge Network for poll watcher training, today is a good day to do it. It’s free, easy and available right now. What are you waiting for?
Tell your local election officials you want to help: Your local polling place is probably a man short and still needing help. Contact your local official now and tell them that you want to work in the polls!
Keep the online conversation going: The stretch between conventions and election gets pretty hot online in terms of misinformation. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and help us spread the TTV message. You can follow our election news blog here and share links within your network. Do you see someone trolling @TrueTheVote online? Push back!
We also hope you’ll throw several bucks our way! Every. Dollar. Helps. You can contribute online here or find our mailing address to give the good old-fashioned way.
July 19, 2016 TTV National Conference Call Replay
We understand -- summer scheduling gets tricky. So, if you couldn’t join us for the July 2016 National Call, we’ve got you covered. Check out the replay here!
Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.
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