Jim Crow returns

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Jim Crow returns

Millions of minority voters threatened by electoral purge

By Greg Palast for Al Jazeera America

Photos by Zach D. Roberts for Al Jazeera America

Produced by Alex Newman, Steve Melendez, Tate Strickland, John Thomason, Lam Thuy Vo

Edited by Mark Rykoff, Jayati Vora

An elderly voter makes her way to a polling station in Atlanta, Georgia, on Oct. 13, 2014, the first day of early voting, after having been driven there by a van supplied by the Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda, a get-out-the-vote group.

Published on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014

Election officials in 27 states, most of them Republicans, have launched a program that threatens a massive purge of voters from the rolls. Millions, especially black, Hispanic and Asian-American voters, are at risk. Already, tens of thousands have been removed in at least one battleground state, and the numbers are expected to climb, according to a six-month-long, nationwide investigation by Al Jazeera America.

At the heart of this voter-roll scrub is the Interstate Crosscheck program, which has generated a master list of nearly 7 million names. Officials say that these names represent legions of fraudsters who are not only registered but have actually voted in two or more states in the same election — a felony punishable by 2 to 10 years in prison.

Until now, state elections officials have refused to turn over their Crosscheck lists, some on grounds that these voters are subject to criminal investigation. Now, for the first time, three states — Georgia, Virginia and Washington — have released their lists to Al Jazeera America, providing a total of just over 2 million names.

The Crosscheck list of suspected double voters has been compiled by matching names from roughly 110 million voter records from participating states. Interstate Crosscheck is the pet project of Kansas’ controversial Republican secretary of state, Kris Kobach, known for his crusade against voter fraud.

The three states’ lists are heavily weighted with names such as Jackson, Garcia, Patel and Kim — ones common among minorities, who vote overwhelmingly Democratic. Indeed, fully 1 in 7 African-Americans in those 27 states, plus the state of Washington (which enrolled in Crosscheck but has decided not to utilize the results), are listed as under suspicion of having voted twice. This also applies to 1 in 8 Asian-Americans and 1 in 8 Hispanic voters. White voters too — 1 in 11 — are at risk of having their names scrubbed from the voter rolls, though not as vulnerable as minorities.

If even a fraction of those names are blocked from voting or purged from voter rolls, it could alter the outcome of next week’s electoral battle for control of the U.S. Senate — and perhaps prove decisive in the 2016 presidential vote count.

“It’s Jim Crow all over again,” says the Rev. Joseph Lowery, who cofounded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with Martin Luther King, Jr. Lowery, now 93, says he recognizes in the list of threatened voters a sophisticated new form of an old and tired tactic. “I think [the Republicans] would use anything they can find. Their desperation is rising.”

For more on Crosscheck, tune in to Part 1 of Greg Palast’s investigation for America Tonight on Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET.

The Interstate Crosscheck list, as viewed on a mobile device, left. Parishioners at the historically black Ebenezer Baptist Church register to vote, right. (Click to enlarge images)

Though Kobach declined to be interviewed, Roger Bonds, the chairman of the Republican Party in Georgia’s Fulton County, responds, “This is how we have successfully prevented voter fraud.”

Based on the Crosscheck lists, officials have begun the process of removing names from the rolls — beginning with 41,637 in Virginia alone. Yet the criteria used for matching these double voters are disturbingly inadequate.

Is your state in the Crosscheck program?

See a table of participating states and the election officials responsible for running Crosscheck.

Millions of mismatches

There are 6,951,484 names on the target list of the 28 states in the Crosscheck group; each of them represents a suspected double voter whose registration has now become subject to challenge and removal. According to a 2013 presentation by Kobach to the National Association of State Election Directors, the program is a highly sophisticated voter-fraud-detection system. The sample matches he showed his audience included the following criteria: first, last and middle name or initial; date of birth; suffixes; and Social Security number, or at least its last four digits.

According to this presentation by Crosscheck’s Kris Kobach, the program would match possible double voters on multiple points: first, middle and last name; date of birth and the last four digits of Social Security numbers.

That was the sales pitch. But the actual lists show that not only are middle names commonly mismatched and suffix discrepancies ignored, even birthdates don’t seem to have been taken into account. Moreover, Crosscheck deliberately ignores Social Security mismatches, in the few instances when the numbers are even collected. The Crosscheck instructions for county election officers state, “Social Security numbers are included for verification; the numbers might or might not match.”

In this March 2013 document explaining the Crosscheck program to county election officers, the instructions explicitly say Social Security numbers “might or might not match.” In the lists obtained by Al Jazeera America, alleged double voters were matched on first and last name only.

In practice, all it takes to become a suspect is sharing a first and last name with a voter in another state. Typical “matches” identifying those who may have voted in both Georgia and Virginia include:

  • Kevin Antonio Hayes of Durham, North Carolina, is a match for a man who voted in Alexandria, Virginia, as Kevin Thomas Hayes.
  • John Paul Williams of Alexandria is supposedly the same man as John R. Williams of Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Robert Dewey Cox of Marietta, Georgia is matched with Robert Glen Cox of Springfield, Virginia.

Are you on the crosscheck list?

Al Jazeera America visited these and several other potential double voters. John Paul Williams of Alexandria insists he has never used the alias “John R. Williams.” “I’ve never lived in Georgia,” he says.

Jo Cox, wife of suspected double voter Robert Glen Cox of Virginia, says she has a solid alibi for him. Cox “is 85 years old and handicapped. He wasn’t in Georgia. Never voted there,” she says. He has also never used the middle name “Dewey.”

Twenty-three percent of the names — nearly 1.6 million of them — lack matching middle names. “Jr.” and “Sr.” are ignored, potentially disenfranchising two generations in the same family. And, notably, of those who may have voted twice in the 2012 presidential election, 27 percent were listed as “inactive” voters, meaning that almost 1.9 million may not even have voted once in that race, according to Crosscheck’s own records.

Al Jazeera America met with Kevin Antonio Hayes at his home in Durham. He is listed as having voted a second time, in Virginia, with the middle name Thomas, Hayes and his mother insist that he did not vote at all.

Minority last names are overrepresented in Crosscheck lists

Mark Swedlund is a specialist in list analytics whose clients have included eBay, AT&T and Nike. At Al Jazeera America’s request, he conducted a statistical review of Crosscheck’s three lists of suspected double voters.

According to Swedlund, “It appears that Crosscheck does have inherent bias to over-selecting for potential scrutiny and purging voters from Asian, Hispanic and Black ethnic groups. In fact, the matching methodology, which presumes people in other states with the same name are matches, will always over-select from groups of people with common surnames.” Swedlund sums up the method for finding two-state voters — simply matching first and last name — as “ludicrous, just crazy.”

Elderly voters board a van that will take them to a polling station in Atlanta on the first day of early voting, Oct. 13, 2014. (Click to enlarge images)

Helen Butler is the executive director of Georgia’s Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda, which conducts voter drives in minority communities. Any purge list that relies on name matches will contain a built-in racial bias against African-Americans, she says, because “We [African-Americans] took our slave owners’ names.” The search website PeopleSmart notes that 86,020 people in the United States have the name John Jackson. And according to the 2000 U.S. Census, which is the most recent data set, 53 percent of Jacksons are African-American.

Georgia Democrats angered by stealthy purge

In North Carolina, Republican officials are loudly proclaiming their hunt for alleged double voters using Crosscheck. But in nearby Georgia, Democratic leaders say they are shocked that they have been kept in the dark about the state’s use of Crosscheck lists — and the racial profile of the targeted voters.

“It’s biased, I think, both in form and intent,” says Rep. Stacey Abrams, leader of the Democrats in the Georgia state legislature. “But more concerning to me is the fact this is being done stealthfully. … We have never had this information presented to us.”

Abrams, in her second role as founder of New Georgia Project, a nonpartisan voter registration group, has, in coordination with the NAACP, already sued Georgia’s Republican secretary of state, Brian Kemp, on behalf of 56,001 voters who filled out registration forms but have yet to see their names appear on voter rolls.

Abrams is especially concerned that the Crosscheck list was crafted by GOP official Kobach. “I believe that Kris Kobach has demonstrated a very aggressive animus towards people of color … in voter registration,” she says. Abrams is now threatening legislative and legal action against Kemp.

Butler is particularly incensed that she was not informed of the use of Crosscheck’s list, because she is also a member of the board of elections in Morgan County, Georgia.

Helen Butler, left, is the executive director of Georgia’s Coalition for the People’s Agenda. Joseph Naylor, 62, right, said that he had to file a sworn and witnessed affidavit that he had not voted in two states in order to save his vote. (Click to enlarge images)

Butler invited Al Jazeera America to join a group of elderly African-Americans taking a van to Adamsville Recreation Center in Atlanta on Oct. 13, the first day of early voting. All were from a senior home next to Ebenezer Baptist Church, from where, six decades ago, King, Jr. led the movement for voting rights for African-Americans. It is also, according to Crosscheck, a hive of suspected double voters, 10 at that single address. One of them, Joseph Naylor, 62, told Al Jazeera America that to save his vote he had to file a sworn and witnessed affidavit that he had not voted in both Georgia and Louisiana.

“That is just total voter suppression,” Butler says. According to her, the idea of hundreds of thousands of Georgians illegally voting twice is “crazy. That is totally crazy, for someone to vote in two places. That’s kind of odd because we have a hard time getting them to vote [in] one place.”

Kemp did not respond to requests for comment.

The Asian-American Crime Wave

Al Jazeera America showed the Crosscheck lists to Martin Luther King III, who succeeded his father and Lowery to lead the SCLC. He notes that using shoddily put-together lists of supposed matches is not a new tactic. The capture of common names is certain to ensnare black voters, he says, and reminds him of the presidential race of 2000, when Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris wrongly purged voters from a list of nearly 58,000, many of them African-American. They were purged on the grounds that they were felons and thus banned from voting, which helped to hand the presidency to George W. Bush. Yet not one was found guilty of voting illegally. Once again, King notes, this minority-heavy list falsely flags fraudulent voters. Compared to the prior purge, this new one is more sophisticated, he says. “I hate to characterize it as a trick [but] it really is. It really is about trying to control who can and cannot vote.”

Interviewed at his home, King stands in front of a photo with his father and grandfather, taken when he was nine years old. “And I think [of] my dad, my grandfather, my mother and so many others who fought and gave their lives … so we might have the right to vote,” King says. “We purport to be the greatest in the world. But yet, in 2014, we are tying people’s hands and keep — trying to keep them from voting?” he asks. “We should be making it easier.”

Now, for the first time, the accusation of double voting threatens a new, fast-growing demographic: Asian-Americans.

Minorities more likely to be tagged as double voters

Fully 1 in 7 African-Americans in the participating 27 states, plus the state of Washington (which enrolled in Crosscheck but has decided not to utilize the results), are listed as under suspicion of having voting twice. This also applies to 1 in 8 Asian-Americans and 1 in 8 Hispanic voters. White voters too — 1 in 11 — are at risk of having their names scrubbed from the voter rolls, though not as vulnerable as minorities.

“I think the Asian community would be shocked to see that we are the most criminally suspect of the bunch,” says Helen Ho, commenting on the number of Chungs, Parks and Kims on the suspected double-voter lists.

Ho is a civil-rights attorney who heads Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta, based in Doraville, a legal-advocacy center in the heart of the Asian immigrant community in Georgia.

“Most of us are naturalized citizens,” she says. “Most of us have to take the citizenship exam. So we know the Constitution and the rules much better than most Americans. … So the question is, ‘Why would a disproportionate number of Asian-Americans risk breaking the law to vote twice?’ ”

Helen Ho, the founding executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta, stands in her office in Doraville, Georgia, left. Voter outreach materials at the office, right. (Click to enlarge images)

On seeing his name on the list of potential double voters, Sang Park, an elderly volunteer with the advocacy center, mutters, “It’s outrageous!” Park is not upset that his name appears in the list — Sang Park is roughly as common in Korea as John Jackson is among African-Americans — but that Crosscheck has obviously not cross-checked Social Security numbers.

Ho explains that a crude purge based on common names is sure to include disproportionate numbers of Asian-Americans. “I think anyone that actually paid some mind to the way Asian-American names work, our last names and first names in common usage, would know that there’d be a disproportionate impact. I’m sure the Latino community’s the same.” In fact, a sixth of all Asian-Americans share just 30 surnames and 50 percent of minorities share common last names, versus 30 percent of whites.

AAJA is a nonpartisan group, but Ho understands, she says, why one party would be tempted to purge voters from her community. While it was widely reported that more than 90 percent of African-Americans voted for Barack Obama in 2012, many may not realize that 73 percent of Asian-Americans, whether from India, China or the Pacific Islands, favored the Democrat.

A crime wave without criminals

With millions of suspects, one question keeps arising: Why have there been no mass convictions? Kobach proudly proclaims that Kansas has “referred” 14 voters for prosecution for double voting. And none of them has been convicted.

Yet demands to purge lists of double voters have reached a histrionic volume. In April of this year, former presidential counselor Dick Morris told Fox TV audiences that “probably over a million people that voted twice in [the 2012] election. This is the first concrete evidence we’ve ever had of massive voter fraud.”

In North Carolina, state officials have hired former FBI agent Charles W. “Chuck” Stuber, who played a major role in the campaign finance fraud case brought against former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, to, in the words of their press release, “investigate cases of possible voter fraud identified by an interstate cross-check comparing election records from 28 states.”

Charles Whitfield inquires about his voter registration status at the North Carolina Board of Elections office, left. Voter registration forms sent to the state board of elections office are distributed to the counties where the registrants reside for entry into the voter rolls. (Click to enlarge images)

But despite knowing the names and addresses of 192,207 supposed double voters in the state, Stuber has not nabbed a single one in his five months on the job. Josh Lawson, a spokesman for the board of elections, says, “This agency has made no determination as to which portion of these [lists] represent data error or voter fraud.” In fact, to date, Lawson admits that Stuber has found only errors and not one verified fraudulent voter.

But Lawson did shine a light on the great benefit of the Crosscheck manhunt to the state’s Republican Party, now locked in a tight battle over the U.S. Senate seat of incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan. While the use of Crosscheck has yet to produce a single indictment of a double voter, Lawson says, the program could be used for “list maintenance.” That is, voters on the list, proven guilty or not, could be subject to a process of removal from the voter rolls.

Purge by postcard

Crosscheck instructs each participating state to send a postcard or letter to suspected double voters, requiring them to restate and verify their name and address, sign the card and return it. While this seems a benign way to save one’s voting rights, the problem, says voter advocate Butler, is that few people are likely to notice, fill out and return such a card. She reviewed the one being sent out in Georgia, which she says “looks like a piece of trashy mail that you get every day that you just throw away.”

Direct-mail expert Michael Wychocki was shown a sample postcard. First, he says, 4 percent to 20 percent of any mailing goes astray — leaving voting rights at risk for more than a million citizens simply from wrong and changed addresses. And, crucially, there’s an enormous difference between rich and poor. “The African-American Williams family, renters, may move every year,” he says, “but the Whitehall family in the million-dollar home is barely likely to have moved.”

“It looks as if they’ve broken every direct-marketing rule,” creating a card that seems guaranteed to not be returned, says Wychocki. He explains that marketers know people glance at unsolicited mail for no more than two seconds apiece, and this “single-touch” approach — no follow-up phone calls, emails, radio campaigns or other secondary-outreach methods — ensures a low response rate. Notably, neither Kansas nor other Crosscheck states will reveal how many cards are returned or how many people thereby lose their vote.

To Wychocki, the mailings are suspect, designed by people who “attempted to purposely suppress response through obfuscation.” These are likely quite different than Kansas’ income-tax demands, he says, and from Kobach’s campaign mailings. The direct-mail expert questions why people are asked to prove where they live. “American Express knows where you live,” he says.

Washington state drops Crosscheck

According to Crosscheck, close to a quarter of a million voters in Washington state are potential double-voting fraudsters. The Republican secretary of state, Kim Wyman, has no plans to use the Crosscheck list, preferring instead a far narrower matching program, the Electronic Registration Information Center, funded by the research and public-policy nonprofit the PEW Charitable Trusts. Notably, the ERIC lists require an exact match in several of these fields — among them, driver’s license number, Social Security number, email and phone — as opposed to just name and date of birth. Eleven states, plus the District of Columbia, are members of ERIC.

Virginia agreed to supply Al Jazeera America with the state’s ERIC match list despite a contract requiring confidentiality. That list, with only 37,405 names, was a fraction the size of Crosscheck’s, which tagged over a third of a million Virginians.

Al Jazeera America reached one of ERIC’s creators, the Pew Trusts’ David Becker, in Baltimore. He is dismissive of Crosscheck’s claim of finding legions of fraudulent double voters. Even of ERIC’s own lists, he says, “99.999 percent of those people would not be thinking of voting twice in two states.” He adds, “There’s no widespread evidence of voting in two states. There’s a real problem of millions of people registered in more than one state — though this is hardly an indication of fraud.”

In fact, the purpose of ERIC is not just to remove names but also to add those who are eligible to vote but have not yet registered, Becker says. States that use the ERIC lists must agree, by contract, to find those who have moved or who have an outdated registration in another state and add them to the voter rolls. Postcards or letters must be sent to the unregistered to get them on to the rolls and to the dual registered to update their information.

The Vigilante Integrity Project

What pushed North Carolina to use an ex-FBI agent in tracking down alleged double voters through the Crosscheck list? Al Jazeera America traced the state’s involvement in Crosscheck to lobbying by a group of self-proclaimed vote-fraud trackers, the Voter Integrity Project. Al Jazeera America met the vote-theft vigilantes at their offices in a strip mall in Raleigh.

VIP’s director, Jay DeLancy, exhibits a stern and sincere concern over keeping fraudsters off the voter rolls. His group has garnered much media attention for exposing suspected voting by the dead, by foreigners, by felons and, now, by double voters. This has made him a welcome guest at Tea Party events. Unfortunately for DeLancy and VIP, not a single zombie, alien, criminal or body double has, in fact, been captured based on their accusations. Nevertheless, DeLancy says his group did convince the Republican leadership of North Carolina’s legislature to adopt Crosscheck and hire FBI agent Stuber.

DeLancy says he is on the trail of an unnamed double voter who is “currently on the run.” The unnamed man is, he admits, a traveling salesman, so “on the run” may mean “on the job.”

What DeLancy does not have, however, are the Crosscheck lists. Stuber has denied all requests, including several from Al Jazeera America, for a copy of the North Carolina list of supposed double voters. But unlike VIP, Al Jazeera America was able to construct much of the North Carolina roll from lists released by other states.

One of those suspected of voting twice lives a five-minute walk from the VIP offices. When confronted with his name on the Crosscheck list as a voter in both Fairfax, Virginia and in Raleigh, North Carolina, Robert Blackman Finnel Jr. confesses that he indeed once lived and voted in Virginia. But, he protests, “I swear on a stack of Bibles” that he was not in, nor voted in, that state in the 2012 election. His oath is in doubt, however, as, from his wheelchair, the senior-home resident did not appear to be able to lift more than one Bible at a time.

For more on Crosscheck, tune in to Part 1 of Greg Palast’s investigation for America Tonight on Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET.

States participating in Crosscheck
State Secretary of State* Party
Alaska Mead Treadwell R
Arizona Ken Bennett R
Arkansas Mark Martin R
Colorado Scott Gessler R
Georgia Brian Kemp R
Idaho Ben Ysursa R
Illinois Jesse White D
Indiana Connie Lawson R
Iowa Matt Schultz R
Kansas Kris Kobach R
Kentucky Alison Lundergan Grimes D
Louisiana Tom Schedler R
Massachusetts William F Glavin D
Michigan Ruth Johnson R
Mississippi Delbert Hosemann R
Missouri Jason Kander D
Nebraska John A. Gale R
Nevada Ross Miller D
North Carolina Kim Strach Non-partisan
Ohio Jon Husted R
Oklahoma Chris Benge R
Pennsylvania Carol Aichele R
South Dakota Jason Gant R
South Carolina Mark Hammond R
Tennessee Tre Hargett R
Virginia Levar Stoney D
West Virginia Natalie Tennant D
Source: Al Jazeera reporting
Note: *Officials are secretaries of state, except in Alaska (lieutenant governor) and North Carolina (director of the state board of elections).

Join the Conversation

61 Comments

8 hours ago
Stephen Fuller-Rowell
If direct mail guru Mark Swedlund says this is ‘ludicrous’ then it needs to stop.

8 hours ago
Ablestreet .
I don’t see how they can look at the last four digits of the social security  number to determine if as person has committed voter fraud. The first three and the last four digits of a social security number can be the same for many people. It’s the two digits in the middle that matter. My sister and I got our social security numbers at the same time and all of the digits are the same except for the two middle digits.

8 hours ago
David Allison
Thankfully there is still one news organization doing good investigatory journalism. This is a very important article that should lead to the end of the Crosscheck scam.

8 hours ago
Kyle Rokes
What VIP does isn’t new. Back in the day, it was done by the KKK.

8 hours ago
Bong Hits
The founding fathers restricted voting to those engaged and invested in the country.  Their system was not perfect but they saw the necessity to not let such an important task be left to everyone (especially those who were not loyal to the cause).  It’s no different today.  Why should people who have little interest in advancing the welfare of the country be allowed to determine it’s path.  Why not just let everyone on the planet vote since the world has such a huge stake in what we do.  It’s time to make voting important.  It really is a privilege more than a right.

8 hours ago
Anthony Oliver
Need a state Id card or driving license to vote ! use the Dl number so you cannot vote twice.

9 hours ago
Anthony Oliver
Democrats have always used voter fraud in elections its not unusual , plus they pray on the less educated minorities  to further their agenda , bigger government more handouts , basically socialism 101 .  didn,t work for Spain and   Greece wont work in the US,  but as our population become less educated their voter base expands ..

9 hours ago
Stephen Powell
The idea that the only qualification to vote is the ability to show up at a polling place is total nonsense. There is a baseline of involvement with society, including proof of citizenship in the US, that qualifies one to vote. Painting this as some sort of conspiracy is propaganda journalism attacking US institutions.

10 hours ago
CarolinaSistah
We need to stop whining. We should act when they start making laws that just apply to minorities and nobody else. These rules apply to every eligible voter. If there is nothing to hide, clear any eligibility issues, and go vote!

9 hours ago
Sylvan Hancock
That’s kind of a foolish way to look at the situation. The rules claim to be designed to stop double voters, yet all they do is match first and last name, which as the article said means they will disproportionally end up targeting a large swathe of minorities. You can’t say that “It applies to everyone therefore its fair” if the people it applies to are in different situations. As the article says, whites have much less chance of losing their vote due to the wider range of names. If it was easy to affirm you weren’t a double voter, then that wouldn’t be all that much of a problem… but as this article also says, the people likely to be targeted and also the people likely to not notice the message. To act as though because it’s a blanket statement it’s ok is to ignore reality.

8 hours ago
Ablestreet .
They are trying to keep black people from voting. Looking for people with the same name when it is very common for people to have the same first and last name proves nothing. Matching the last four digits of the social security number also  proves nothing. My sister and I have the same first three digits and the same last four digits in our social security numbers. It’s the two digits in the middle that are different.

11 hours ago
Tim Ozimek
Just for morbid curiosity, if the standard required all fields to match for a valid double vote, how many matches would be returned?  Zero?

Since only a handful of people see this list couldn’t the Crosscheck administrators simply add whatever they wanted?

11 hours ago
ConstitutionLo1
As Bill Clinton just said, “I believe that in ways large and small, peaceful and sometimes violent, that the biggest threat to the future of our children and grandchildren is the poison of identity politics that preaches that our differences are far more important than our common humanity.”
Articles like this that try to analyze to show that minorities are somehow more of a victim of something that is not at all discriminatory in nature is contributing to the balkinazation of America.  It is actually demeaning to claim that minorities are less capable of following the rules that everyone else has to follow.  If they can manage to submit their taxes, they can figure out what it takes to vote.
These actions and laws are not about skin color or even political party, they are about the integrity of the election process.  One registration, one vote per person and when a person moves or is not eligible to vote, they should be removed.

9 hours ago
Steve Coatney
Obviously you didn’t even read the article.   It isn’t discussing whether one vote per person is right, or whether different rules do or should apply to different groups.   It’s discussing the fact that voters with similar though significantly different names and even social security numbers are being targeted as potential double-voters.

9 hours ago
Sylvan Hancock
Yet, we cannot simply ignore real differences for the sake of an ideal.
The minorities /are/ more of a victim, as the numbers show. They have more similar names overall, therefore a system that only cares about names will get more false positives for them than for others.
It isn’t “demeaning” to say that they’re likely to not notice the system. The article clearly talks about reasons why minorities would have more trouble dealing with the vote reclaiming system than non-minorities.
If the rules are bad, it doesn’t matter how blanket they are, they can’t stand just based on theory. This system claims to be hunting down double voters, but it’s more realistically just another hoop to jump through with little pay off, which is the main way to trim out the less stable sections of society when using bureaucratic power.

Your argument, for instance, would work perfectly well for defending the original Jim Crow laws if we chose to reinstate them.

8 hours ago
David Allison
Please stop trying to sound reasonable while you justify what the article and independent analysts clearly demonstrate is a systemic effort to deny votes to minority voters. Quoting Clinton does not make your silly position any more valid than if you quoted Reagan.

Your effort to minimize the extent of the racist and political animus built into this Republican designed program is, as has been demonstrated repeatedly over the past two decades, a scam solution in search of a problem that does not exist.
The ERIC program does exactly what you say should be done without potentially invalidating hundreds of thousands of legitimate votes and voters rights. Crosscheck is both invalid and discriminatory.

11 hours ago
Elaine Hardy

The Republicans who are working so hard, to suppress the rights of so many, have only served to make me even more determined to ensure they lose.

11 hours ago
Michael Molter
Wouldn’t using a state-issued photo ID solve this problem? I literally don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a driver’s license or some other form of state-issued ID, and that number would essentially guarantee you are who you are. Just scan the barcode on the back, no need to write you name/risk spelling it wrong/risk getting put on this list. I never really understood the push against this.

8 hours ago
Phaze Doubt
Never understood that either. The only thing I’ve heard against it is that somehow it would be a hardship on the poorer people in our country to obtain a valid ID card and may disenfranchise them. I say that’s hogwash myself but that’s honestly the only counter argument I’ve heard against it.

11 hours ago
David Porter
Why is it always with a story like this that they immediately turn it into something about race.  From what I saw… more white people total would be removed.  This is strictly Dem/Rep corruption (and not a racist issue).

9 hours ago
ssnbbr
It’s the percentages, David. Not the number of people. More white people would be removed because there are more white people. That’s why we do not call white people “minorities”.

9 hours ago
Sylvan Hancock
I don’t understand what you mean by “more white people total would be removed”. The article claims the system goes by first name/last name, which it says are much more likely to affect minorities than white groups. If the system unfairly represents one race compared to others, than that’s basically the definition of racism.

11 hours ago
Chris Cook
Sadly, Canada’s governing Conservative party is adopting tried and true voter suppression methods garnered from political fellow-traveller Republican operators. Even worse, the Canadian media seems largely disinterested in the already established theft of the country’s last election due to dirty tricks. If only we had a Greg Palast!

11 hours ago
LillyGrillzit
When I voted early yesterday, I wanted to ask, “Am I being detained?” “Am I under arrest?” because that is what it felt like, passing the scrutiny of the Rep poll police.

11 hours ago
LillyGrillzit
Not only are Arkansas residents required to show Identification, but then as the person who “intakes” voters holds my Driver’s License out of my sight, they ask “What is your full name, and date of birth” out loud. I had to five that information. Then, before returning it to me she says, “Now, what is your street address, quick.” Again, out loud. Then I am given a document that makes me swear that the information I provided is true. Now, on a bad day, I could have gotten one of those things wrong. I offered to show my voter registration card, they did not want to see it. Crap.

12 hours ago
Gregg Boyer
Recall “junior’ was installed and re installed by the supreme court . Anyone surprised by this, still believes in santa .

12 hours ago
ScottCable2
we should be able to vote via an ATM machine now and have a video record where we can review our own vote.

12 hours ago
ScottCable2
Voter fraud and voter suppression erode the confidence of the voter in the process. Voter fraud occurs. Why do we suddenly think people who commit fraud become saints for one day at the polls? both need to be addresses to insure the integrity of the election process.  There are many types of election fraud.

12 hours ago
James Chesky
This is Criminal.

13 hours ago
Tracy Smith Marino
I guess it is true that you can buy your politicians. I remember when integrity and fair play meant something. Now you can cheat your way to winning by not allowing people to vote and it seems to be just fine and dandy with the GOP and the justices. Unfortunate that this country and its people have become so sick and twisted!

10 hours ago
Glen Scutt
Bad news of the day……..It has always been true that one has been able to buy politicians, one way or another.  That is why ‘democracy’ has been called ‘mob rule’ and why there is also something called ‘rule of law.’  The latter means that one sometimes has to buy judges as well as politicians.  Freedom for the individual may exist in the spaces between the contending political/legal factions.  Voting seems to lack relevancy sometimes.

13 hours ago
Alex Jarvis
Here is an obvious flaw in the logic presented here…  Assuming that the double votes are cast by non-citizens, then it makes perfect sense that the names associated with the double votes are of people with a black, Hispanic/Latino, and Asian common names.  I mean, if some Somali dude came to a voting booth and his name was Ole Stark I’m sure that would be suspect even to the dumbest of our election regulation personnel.  There are other flaws, but that is the simple obvious one that makes this article insulting to intelligent people who can think for themselves.

9 hours ago
Sylvan Hancock
That isn’t actually a flaw in the logic here though.
This article is saying that this system unfairly targets registered minorities, and backs it up by saying that if the system is designed to catch double voters using just first and last names, it’s going to hit minority communities because they have a lot of similar names. This article has nothing to do with the actions of actual double voters, it’s saying that it’s going to catch more real voters than it’ll catch double voters.

13 hours ago
Nathan Baker
George Bush is registered TWICE in Texas!

10 hours ago
Glen Scutt
Aha!  I always wondered a little how he got elected!

13 hours ago
Wilson Boozer
America wants to APPEAR to be tolerant while practicing racism!
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