The Voting Thread (Procedures, Turnout, Legal Challenges)(Update: Trump to file suit in PA, MI, WI, AZ, NV, GA) (1 Viewer)

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    Lapaz

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    There is a lot of push-back from Trump on voting by mail, but most states allow it, and 1/3 allow it without any excuse. His rationale is that it will lead to vast fraud, but of course that isn't his real reason. His real reason is that he thinks it will be worse for conservatives, but studies have shown that states that have instituted much broader voting by mail haven't had any statistical changes in party voting.



    Although, normally voting by mail doesn't affect party votes, I bet it might this year if we have another resurgence of Covid, because I think the right is much more apt to discount the virus than the left. I know that is why Trump is against it.

    Whether you're left or right wing, expanding mail in votes is the right thing to do to reduce the likelihood of spreading the virus, to expand voter participation, and to make it easier for those that do show up to stay distant. It will also allow any people with susceptibilities to remain safer. I think voting by mail could be made extremely secure by having people vote using traditional postal mail, coupled with requiring a confirmation either by phone, email or text. If done by phone, then voters can provide confirmation that can include confirming their form number. If done by email or text, it can include a picture of their form, and then confirmation that that was their form. Rather than staffers individually calling people, this can be automated by having voters call the number, text the number, or email the address provided to them on their form. A website can even be created with a database of those that have voted, and perhaps a link to allow people to confirm their vote was correctly registered. For people without computers, a site can include a means to access the database over the phone with some confirmation information. These types of systems are used extensively by banks and other sites that need security, so I think they are mature enough to use. We could even use such a site for people to confirm their vote on the day of the election.
     
    We drove through The Villages last January just out of curiosity. I didn’t much care for it. There’s a fake downtown area that reminds me of Disney, it’s made to look older than it is, just has a fake look to it, like a movie set. And I am not keen on only having old people for neighbors.

    Just not my thing.

    When you’re somewhere where is only 75+ year olds it’s like Children of the Creamed Corn

    pros and cons of old neighbors

    Pros - very quiet, yard meticulously maintained

    Cons - long boring stories with no point, all up in your business
     
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    We drove through The Villages last January just out of curiosity. I didn’t much care for it. There’s a fake downtown area that reminds me of Disney, it’s made to look older than it is, just has a fake look to it, like a movie set. And I am not keen on only having old people for neighbors.

    Just not my thing.

    A few of our guys retired back in 2002 and up and moved to the Villages.....I was surprised especially my friend who was not an old fogey type at all....he is the only one still there, the others have since moved.....weird.....
     
    A few of our guys retired back in 2002 and up and moved to the Villages.....I was surprised especially my friend who was not an old fogey type at all....he is the only one still there, the others have since moved.....weird.....
    You can’t drive through any of the “towns” or whatever they call them. You can drive through on state roads and drive past the golf courses and see the houses from afar. Then you can drive through the downtown area. It was all immaculately groomed, reminded me of Disney for sure.
     
    Would you support this?

    I’m on the fence on it honestly
    ========================

    The first step toward ending our voting wars is to recognize that every citizen should play a role in shaping our nation’s destiny.


    In the wake of changes that made voting more convenient, and resulted in record turnout in 2020, state after state is making it harder for citizens to cast a ballot.

    Congress is deadlocked on whether the federal government should protect this most basic of all democratic rights. False claims of election-rigging in 2020 led to a violent attack on the very process of transferring power.

    As a nation, we vacillate between inclusion and exclusion, between embracing democracy or retreating.

    Breaking this cycle requires a game-changer. We propose universal voting.


    Under this system, every U.S. citizen would be legally obligated to vote, just as every citizen is obligated to serve on juries.

    By recognizing that all of us, as a matter of civic duty, have an obligation to shape our shared project of democratic self-government, we could move from our 2020 voter turnout high — some 66.8 percent of eligible voters — much closer to 100 percent democracy.

    Universal voting takes seriously the Declaration of Independence’s insistence that government is legitimate only when it is based on the “consent of the governed.”

    The Founders did not say “some of the governed” (even 66.8 percent). Including everyone in our system of government would live up to the promise made at the birth of our republic.

    Universal voting would tear down barriers and elevate our civic obligations. It could undergird other reforms and make clear that our country’s commitment to democracy is unapologetic, confident and complete.

    As a public responsibility, voting is no less important than jury duty. Universal civic-duty voting would put an end to legal assaults on voting rights. Those responsible for organizing elections would be required to resist all efforts at voter suppression.


    By bringing all citizens into our democratic experiment, universal voting would tell those who run political campaigns to stop treating elections like invitations to exclusive parties.

    There would no longer be an A-list of “likely voters” and B- and C-level lists of those less likely to participate.

    Political candidates would have to appeal to all of us, rather than strategize on how to turn out their base while discouraging the other side’s supporters from casting ballots.


    More than two dozen democratic countries have versions of compulsory participation. One of the most successful models is Australia’s. The United States adopted the secret ballot after Australia tried it first. We should do the same with universal voting……..

    Those with a moral objection to voting could assert conscientious-objector status, as they can for the draft. To avoid the compounding of fines and fees of the sort disproportionately imposed on low-income people of color, we propose that any fine imposed for failure to vote — no more than $20 — not be compounded with interest and penalties, nor could it be the basis for any criminal warrant. And the penalty could be waived in exchange for an hour of community service…….

    trying to make this happen Still on the fence about it
    ===============================

    RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — People could be fined for not voting in general elections if a bill recently introduced into Congress becomes law.

    The Civic Duty to Vote Act was introduced to the House of Representatives on Monday. The bill is written by Rep. John Larson (CT-1).

    The bill’s goal is to require each eligible citizen to appear to vote in each regularly scheduled general election for federal office. To be an eligible citizen, a person has to be registered to vote for an upcoming election.

    If any eligible citizen is found to have not voted in the general election, a $20 civil money penalty will be assessed to these individuals.

    However, the bill’s text allows Americans to get around the penalty if they are not registered to vote, are unable to vote because of an emergency, cannot follow the terms of the act because of religious beliefs, or if they are unaware of their eligibility to vote.

    Additionally, a waiver would be available for citizens to apply if they cannot afford the $20 penalty or if they commit to performing one hour of community service..........

     
    trying to make this happen Still on the fence about it
    ===============================

    RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — People could be fined for not voting in general elections if a bill recently introduced into Congress becomes law.

    The Civic Duty to Vote Act was introduced to the House of Representatives on Monday. The bill is written by Rep. John Larson (CT-1).

    The bill’s goal is to require each eligible citizen to appear to vote in each regularly scheduled general election for federal office. To be an eligible citizen, a person has to be registered to vote for an upcoming election.

    If any eligible citizen is found to have not voted in the general election, a $20 civil money penalty will be assessed to these individuals.

    However, the bill’s text allows Americans to get around the penalty if they are not registered to vote, are unable to vote because of an emergency, cannot follow the terms of the act because of religious beliefs, or if they are unaware of their eligibility to vote.

    Additionally, a waiver would be available for citizens to apply if they cannot afford the $20 penalty or if they commit to performing one hour of community service..........


    Is there any language about guaranteed wait times?
    I mean, the GOP is already making poor people and urbanites wait in line for 10-12 hours on election day.
     
    I am not on a fence about it. Its total trash. I am 100% sure it would turn into a political witch hunt. Its a form of legal bullying.

    What is the point of passing a law that says we will fine you $20 for not voting, but if you don't pay it, we won't do anything to make you pay it or hold i against you?
    I am so sick of Republicans talking about smaller Gov't and Gov't staying out of people's lives then wanting to do stuff like this. Its ignorant.
    If they are gonna pass laws like this, they need to guarantee that EVERYONE should be represented on the ballot, not just Dems and Repubs. Quit making it damn near impossible for 3rd parties to be on a ballot and banning them from debates..
     
    Ha!
    =========================
    Mark Meadows, who grew up in Florida, moved to North Carolina in the nineteen-eighties and opened Aunt D’s, a sandwich shop in Highlands. He later sold the restaurant and started a real-estate company with a line in vacation properties. (He showed a few to my parents, in the nineties.) He became active in local Republican politics, and, in 2012, ran for Congress and won, going on to represent North Carolina’s Eleventh District until March, 2020, when he resigned the seat to become President Donald Trump’s chief of staff.

    Earlier that month, he sold his twenty-two-hundred-square-foot home in Sapphire. He and his wife, Debbie, also had a condo in Virginia, near Washington, D.C. But, as the summer passed and the election neared, Meadows had not yet purchased a new residence in what had been his home state. On September 19th, about three weeks before North Carolina’s voter-registration deadline for the general election, Meadows filed his paperwork.

    On a line that asked for his residential address—“where you physically live,” the form instructs—Meadows wrote down the address of a fourteen-by-sixty-two-foot mobile home in Scaly Mountain. He listed his move-in date for this address as the following day, September 20th.

    Meadows does not own this property and never has. It is not clear that he has ever spent a single night there. (He did not respond to a request for comment.) The previous owner, who asked that we not use her name, now lives in Florida. “That was just a summer home,” she told me, when I called her up the other day. She seemed surprised to learn that the residence was listed on the Meadowses’ forms.

    The property sits in the southern Appalachian mountains, at about four thousand feet, in the bend of a quiet road above a creek in Macon County. She and her husband bought it in 1985. “We’d come up there for three to four months when my husband was living,” she said. Her husband died several years ago, and the house sat mostly unused for some time afterward, she said, because she had “nobody to go up there with anymore.”

    She only rented it out twice, she told me. The first renter, she said, was Debbie Meadows, who, according to the former owner, reserved the house for two months at some point within the past few years—she couldn’t remember exactly when—but only spent one or two nights there. The Meadowses’ kids had visited the place, too, she said. The former owner was in Florida at the time, but her neighbors, the Talleys, whom she described as friends of the Meadowses’, debriefed her later. As for Mark Meadows, she said, “He did not come. He’s never spent a night in there.”................





    Why not add a third state?
    ======================

    After Donald Trump lost the presidential election, falsely claiming election fraud, Meadows became senior partner at the Conservative Partnership Institute (CPI), which promotes “election integrity” efforts.

    The organization’s “citizen’s guide” urges activists to determine that the registrations of their neighbors are legal by checking on “whether voters have moved, or if the registrations are PO Boxes, commercial addresses or vacant lots” and then “obtaining evidence: photos of commercial buildings? Vacant lots?” and “securing affidavits from current residents that a registered voter has moved.”

    Voter-list maintenance is one of the dividing lines in American politics. Republicans argue that if voter-registration records are not regularly purged and updated, election fraud can take place. Democrats push back that too many voter-list purges are conducted haphazardly, removing eligible voters who don’t learn they are no longer listed until they show up to vote.

    Now it turns out that until last week, Meadows was simultaneously registered to vote in three different states — North Carolina, Virginia and South Carolina — according to state records obtained by The Fact Checker.............

     
    Good article

    Fighting the good fight
    =================

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Beth Bowers grew up in the 1960s and 1970s with parents who marched in protests, wrote letters to members of Congress and voted in elections big and small.

    Her father, a World War II veteran, and her mother, an educational counselor, did not use social media sites in their lifetimes. But Bowers is sure they would be disheartened to see how easily falsehoods about the U.S. elections are disseminated online to millions and millions of people.

    That’s why the Evanston, Illinois, mom spends a few hours each week scouring Facebook groups for conspiracy theories or lies as part of a nationwide volunteer effort to debunk misinformation about voting.

    “The good thing about this work is, it’d be so easy to become incredibly cynical and hopeless, but I think we feel like this is something we can do and make a difference,” Bowers, 59, said in a phone interview.

    As voters ready for hundreds of elections of local and national importance this year, officials and voting rights advocates are bracing for a repeat of the misinformation that overwhelmed the 2020 presidential race and seeded distrust about the legitimacy of Democrat Joe Biden’s victory.

    It culminated in the storming of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 by angry supporters of then-President Donald Trump who believed his lies that the election was stolen from him…….

     
    I thought only Democrats commited voter fraud, especially when it came to absontee voting?.

    Key figure dies in NC absentee ballot fraud probe​

    Had this been a democrat, they would be yelling Killary... I guess we can balme this death on Trump?

    Dowless was still facing state charges involving the 2016 and 2018 elections. He was accused of directing people to collect incomplete absentee ballots in a congressional race and making it appear that the voters had finished them.


    Dowless had been working in 2017 and 2018 in part for 9th Congressional District candidate Mark Harris, a Republican. Witnesses told state officials Dowless gathered hundreds of absentee ballots from Bladen County voters with the help of his assistants. Those workers testified they were directed to collect blank or incomplete ballots, forge signatures on them and even fill in votes for local candidates

     
    Ha!
    =========================
    Mark Meadows, who grew up in Florida, moved to North Carolina in the nineteen-eighties and opened Aunt D’s, a sandwich shop in Highlands. He later sold the restaurant and started a real-estate company with a line in vacation properties. (He showed a few to my parents, in the nineties.) He became active in local Republican politics, and, in 2012, ran for Congress and won, going on to represent North Carolina’s Eleventh District until March, 2020, when he resigned the seat to become President Donald Trump’s chief of staff.

    Earlier that month, he sold his twenty-two-hundred-square-foot home in Sapphire. He and his wife, Debbie, also had a condo in Virginia, near Washington, D.C. But, as the summer passed and the election neared, Meadows had not yet purchased a new residence in what had been his home state. On September 19th, about three weeks before North Carolina’s voter-registration deadline for the general election, Meadows filed his paperwork.

    On a line that asked for his residential address—“where you physically live,” the form instructs—Meadows wrote down the address of a fourteen-by-sixty-two-foot mobile home in Scaly Mountain. He listed his move-in date for this address as the following day, September 20th.

    Meadows does not own this property and never has. It is not clear that he has ever spent a single night there. (He did not respond to a request for comment.) The previous owner, who asked that we not use her name, now lives in Florida. “That was just a summer home,” she told me, when I called her up the other day. She seemed surprised to learn that the residence was listed on the Meadowses’ forms.

    The property sits in the southern Appalachian mountains, at about four thousand feet, in the bend of a quiet road above a creek in Macon County. She and her husband bought it in 1985. “We’d come up there for three to four months when my husband was living,” she said. Her husband died several years ago, and the house sat mostly unused for some time afterward, she said, because she had “nobody to go up there with anymore.”

    She only rented it out twice, she told me. The first renter, she said, was Debbie Meadows, who, according to the former owner, reserved the house for two months at some point within the past few years—she couldn’t remember exactly when—but only spent one or two nights there. The Meadowses’ kids had visited the place, too, she said. The former owner was in Florida at the time, but her neighbors, the Talleys, whom she described as friends of the Meadowses’, debriefed her later. As for Mark Meadows, she said, “He did not come. He’s never spent a night in there.”................






    The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday submitted the findings of its voter fraud probe into former Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, who registered to vote in North Carolina and two other states in the past two years.

    The state Bureau of Investigation turned over the case file to Attorney General Josh Stein, describing its investigation into Meadows' North Carolina voter registration and listed residence. The bureau also said in a statement that prosecutors will determine whether criminal charges will be brought to Meadows............


     
    RACINE, Wis. — Harry Wait marched into the courthouse, walked through a metal detector and planted himself on a bench in the ornate lobby. His supporters, some wearing bright yellow “Free Harry” T-shirts, chatted amiably as they followed him inside.

    Emboldened by former president Donald Trump’s false election claims, Wait in July had ordered absentee ballots in the names of others for the purpose, he said, of exposing what he considers flaws in Wisconsin’s voting systems. Now, on a warm September afternoon, he was using the resulting voter-fraud charges against him — which could land him in prison for up to 13 years — to amplify his argument that absentee balloting should be severely restricted.

    “I’d do it again in a heartbeat because to save the republic, soldiers have to draw blood and blood be drawn,” Wait said as he sat on the courthouse bench.

    For two years, a large segment of Trump supporters has embraced discredited claims that the 2020 election was stolen. The strategy of cultivating anger over supposed voter fraud proved politically disastrous this fall, when election deniers lost high-profile races from Arizona to Pennsylvania.

    Now some Republican leaders are urging their party to downplay election denialism and shift its focus to other issues to improve its chances of winning the presidency in 2024.

    But activists such as Wait are making that difficult, showing how hard it will be to extinguish the grievance and distrust whipped up by Trump and his allies. Undeterred by the November results, Wait in recent weeks has rallied for overhauling election rules, planned a January protest at the state Capitol and pledged to use the charges against him to trumpet his call for new voting laws. For him, the fight over elections continues.............

     
    Wasn't sure what thread to put this in
    =========================

    Hello Fight to Vote readers,

    For the last few months, I’ve been following the case of Pamela Moses, a 44-year-old activist in Memphis who was convicted in November for trying to register to vote while she was ineligible. On Monday, Moses, who is Black, was sentenced to six years and one day in prison.

    To my eye, the case is far more complex than it seems.....

    The case caught my attention for a few reasons. First, it is rare to see a prosecutor bring criminal charges against someone for election crimes, and I was curious whether this was a bona fide case of fraud or of someone who had made a mistake. Second, there has been growing awareness of racial disparities in punishments for election-related crimes. Black people such as Crystal Mason and Hervis Rogers have faced years in prison for making mistakes about their voting eligibility. White voters have received much lighter sentences for election-related crimes.

    Weirich’s office did not respond to interview requests, but the more I looked into Moses’ case, the more I realized the case wasn’t straightforward at all. Behind the scenes, Tennessee officials conceded that they had made a series of mistakes concerning Moses’ voting eligibility.

    In 2015, when Moses pleaded guilty to her felony, she says no one told her she couldn’t vote. “They never mentioned anything about voting. They never mentioned anything about not voting, being able to vote … none of that,” Moses told me last year. (She added she hadn’t discussed the case with her two sons, 24 and 13, but described it as “traumatic”.)

    At the time, election officials should have removed her from the rolls, but the court never sent election officials in Memphis the documents they needed to do so, according to a letter from an election official I obtained.

    Moses didn’t know anything was amiss until 2019, when she launched a long-shot mayoral campaign. Election officials said she couldn’t appear on the ballot because of her felony. When they began to look into her eligibility, they also realized she had never been taken off the voter rolls. Moses went to court and asked a judge to clarify whether she was still on probation, and the court confirmed that she was. What happened next is at the crux of the case against her.

    Moses did not believe the judge had correctly calculated her sentence. So she went to the local probation office and asked an officer to figure it out. An officer filled out and signed a certificate confirming her probation had ended. In Tennessee, people with felony convictions who want to vote need that document from a correction official. Moses submitted it to local election officials along with a voter registration form.

    But the day afterwards, an official at the corrections department wrote an email to election officials saying a probation officer had made an “error” on Moses’ certificate. Moses was still serving an active felony sentence, they wrote, and was not eligible to vote. The department offered no explanation for the mistake.

    Such errors are actually fairly common in Tennessee, where the voting rules are extremely confusing for people with felonies, Blair Bowie, an attorney at the Campaign Legal Center, told me. A 2017 study found that about 8% of the certificates submitted were rejected because the voters remained ineligible. Bowie said she was unaware of any voter in the state ever facing criminal charges for submitting a certificate but later turning out to be ineligible to vote..............

    Another article
    ============
    It was the morning after Labor Day and Pamela Moses was in a rush.

    All summer, the outspoken activist had been feuding with election officials in Memphis, Tennessee. She wanted to get her name on the ballot for Memphis’s 2019 mayoral election, even gathering enough signatures to do so. But officials said she could not run – a prior felony conviction made her ineligible to seek office.

    Now, there was a new problem. In late August, the local elections commission sent her a letter saying they were going to cancel her voter registration. Moses was confused – she had been voting for years. That day, she was determined to sort it out.

    But what unfolded over just a few hours that day on 3 September 2019 would upend her life. It would lead to a sudden arrest months later at O’Hare airport in Chicago and culminate in a six-year prison sentence for voter fraud.

    Her case would go on to touch a nerve in the US and cause a national outcry. While there’s no comprehensive data on voter fraud prosecutions based on race, it was one of several recent examples in which Black defendants like Moses have faced long criminal sentences for voting errors, while white people have faced little punishment for more fraud.

    Long after the abolition of poll taxes and literacy tests, Black Americans still face significant scrutiny for trying to exercise their right to vote……..

     
    Mark Meadows, who was chief of staff to President Donald Trump, will not be charged for voter fraud related to his 2020 registration and absentee vote in North Carolina, the state’s chief law enforcement official announced Friday.


    Meadows and his wife, Debra, were under investigation after media reports that the former North Carolina congressman’s voter registration listed a mobile home in Scaly Mountain, N.C., that he had never owned, stayed at or visited.

    But authorities were shown proof that Meadows and his wife leased the home, Debra did stay there for short periods, and there was no evidence the couple “knowingly swore to false information considering the signed lease,” said Attorney General Josh Stein (D).


    Meadows is “explicitly excepted from certain residency requirements as a result of his service to the federal government,” Stein added.

    “The State Bureau of Investigation conducted an extensive investigation into the fraud allegations against Mr. and Mrs. Meadows concerning their registration and voting in the 2020 elections,” Stein said in a statement. “After a thorough review, my office has concluded that there is not sufficient evidence to bring charges against either of them in this matter.”……….

     
    Mark Meadows, who was chief of staff to President Donald Trump, will not be charged for voter fraud related to his 2020 registration and absentee vote in North Carolina, the state’s chief law enforcement official announced Friday.


    Meadows and his wife, Debra, were under investigation after media reports that the former North Carolina congressman’s voter registration listed a mobile home in Scaly Mountain, N.C., that he had never owned, stayed at or visited.

    But authorities were shown proof that Meadows and his wife leased the home, Debra did stay there for short periods, and there was no evidence the couple “knowingly swore to false information considering the signed lease,” said Attorney General Josh Stein (D).


    Meadows is “explicitly excepted from certain residency requirements as a result of his service to the federal government,” Stein added.

    “The State Bureau of Investigation conducted an extensive investigation into the fraud allegations against Mr. and Mrs. Meadows concerning their registration and voting in the 2020 elections,” Stein said in a statement. “After a thorough review, my office has concluded that there is not sufficient evidence to bring charges against either of them in this matter.”……….

    I’m fine with this and think it is probably the correct decision.
     

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