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Forum Post: Voter Suppression Laws May Discourage 10 Million Hispanics, Study Finds

Posted 11 years ago on Sept. 24, 2012, 6:07 p.m. EST by LeoYo (5909)
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Voter Suppression Laws May Discourage 10 Million Hispanics, Study Finds

Monday, 24 September 2012 10:08 By Aviva Shen, ThinkProgress | Report


A new study by the Advancement Project estimatesthat voter purges and ID requirements being enacted in over 20 states could disenfranchise at least 10 million Hispanic citizens. The analysis found about 6.3 million Hispanic citizens were not registered to vote in 2010, while 10.8 million, about half the voting bloc, said they did not vote. The number is bound to swell as new efforts to limit the vote in states with large Latino communities use outdated information to remove suspected noncitizens:

Those states are home to nearly 5.5 million registered Latino voters, and 1.1 million naturalized citizens from Latin America. Colorado and Florida identified voters for possible purging by comparing their voter registrations with driver’s license databases that show which voters indicated they were immigrants – thereby creating a problem, the report said.

“Naturalized citizens typically received their driver’s licenses when they were legal immigrants but before becoming naturalized citizens (and before registering to vote); therefore, this method generates lists of voters to be checked that targets naturalized citizens,” the report said.

Colorado has since called off its voter purge, but not before sending semi-threatening letters to suspected non-citizens telling them they needed to prove their citizenship. Florida has restarted a new purge with impossible deadlines for voters to prove their citizenship. Voter ID laws throw up more obstacles, as many naturalized citizens will now be asked for additional paperwork to prove their eligibility, a requirement researchers called “onerous and sometimes expensive.” Both presidential candidates have been fighting for Hispanic votes, making their case at the Univision forum in Florida last week. But Mitt Romney, considered the most anti-immigrant candidate during the Republican primary, has had trouble winning over Hispanics, who are overwhelmingly in favor of Obama. In order to win the election without picking up any minority votes, Romney would need to carry 61 percent of white voters to make up for this crucial demographic.

Originally published on ThinkProgress


Iranian Diplomat Says Iran Offered Deal to Halt 20 Percent Enrichment

Monday, 24 September 2012 09:51 By Gareth Porter, Inter Press Service | Report


Washington - Iran has again offered to halt its enrichment of uranium to 20 percent, which the United States has identified as its highest priority in the nuclear talks, in return for easing sanctions against Iran, according to Iran’s permanent representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Ali Asghar Soltanieh, who has conducted Iran’s negotiations with the IAEA in Tehran and Vienna, revealed in an interview with IPS that Iran had made the offer at the meeting between EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton and Iran’s leading nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili in Istanbul Sep. 19.

Soltanieh also revealed in the interview that IAEA officials had agreed last month to an Iranian demand that it be provided documents on the alleged Iranian activities related to nuclear weapons which Iran is being asked to explain, but that the concession had then been withdrawn.

“We are prepared to suspend enrichment to 20 percent, provided we find a reciprocal step compatible with it,” Soltanieh said, adding, “We said this in Istanbul.”


Data Centers Waste Vast Amounts of Energy

Sunday, 23 September 2012 15:51 By James Glanz, The New York Times News Service | Report


Santa Clara, Calif. - Jeff Rothschild's machines at Facebook had a problem he knew he had to solve immediately. They were about to melt.

The company had been packing a 40-by-60-foot rental space here with racks of computer servers that were needed to store and process information from members' accounts. The electricity pouring into the computers was overheating Ethernet sockets and other crucial components.

Thinking fast, Mr. Rothschild, the company's engineering chief, took some employees on an expedition to buy every fan they could find — "We cleaned out all of the Walgreens in the area," he said — to blast cool air at the equipment and prevent the Web site from going down. That was in early 2006, when Facebook had a quaint 10 million or so users and the one main server site. Today, the information generated by nearly one billion people requires outsize versions of these facilities, called data centers, with rows and rows of servers spread over hundreds of thousands of square feet, and all with industrial cooling systems.



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[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

A Voting Issue That Isn't

Tuesday, 25 September 2012 11:49 By Eugene Robinson, Washington Post Writers Group | Op-Ed


Washington - When Michelle Obama called voting rights "the movement of our era" in a speech Saturday night, she didn't specifically mention the Republican-led crusade for restrictive voter identification laws. She didn't have to.

Her audience at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's annual gala dinner fully understood the context. It's hard to believe that in this day and age, the right to vote is once again under assault from those who would prefer to keep minorities, the poor and the elderly away from the polls. But here we are.

Let's be clear: Voter ID laws are not a solution to the "problem" of voter fraud. There is no problem, or at least no problem that would be solved by voter ID. Proponents should be able to point to troubling instances of voter-impersonation fraud, which is the only kind that would be prevented by the new laws. But they can't. For all intents and purposes, this kind of fraud simply does not happen. What did happen in 2008 was that African-Americans, Hispanics and poor people -- traditional Democratic Party constituencies -- voted in unusually large numbers. And what happened in 2010 was that Republicans took control of more statehouses and set out to reshape the electorate and make it GOP-friendly.

Not coincidentally, this voter ID campaign has been particularly intense in swing states such as Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Invariably, advocates cloak the restrictive new measures in pious-sounding rhetoric about "the integrity of the voting process." This sounds uncontroversial -- who's against integrity? -- until you weigh the laws' unconscionable costs against their undetectable benefits. "But you need an ID to do a lot of things, like board a plane," advocates say. Unlike commercial air travel, however, voting is a constitutionally protected right. To infringe or abridge that right -- for no demonstrable reason -- should be considered a crime against democracy.

Attorney General Eric Holder has vowed not to "stand by and allow the voting rights of American citizens to be impinged by specious arguments and by those who seek naked political advantage." The Justice Department refused to allow South Carolina -- a state subject to the strictest provisions of the Voting Rights Act -- to enact a new voter ID law on grounds that minorities would be unduly impeded from exercising their right to vote. The state challenged that decision in court, and final arguments in the case were heard Monday. Minorities, poor people and seniors are less likely than other Americans to have government-issued identification such as a driver's license -- and more likely, for various reasons, to have difficulty obtaining an acceptable ID. They might live far from the nearest motor vehicles department office, for example, and lack transportation. In the case of some older African-Americans born in the South under Jim Crow segregation, they might not even have a proper birth certificate of the kind needed to obtain a driver's license or state ID card.

For Hispanics, perhaps more important than voter ID laws are purges of the voter rolls -- which are being conducted in some states, allegedly to make sure that non-citizens do not vote -- and proof-of-citizenship requirements for voter registration.

What could be more innocent, right? But proponents of these measures know that some naturalized citizens, who have every right to vote, will see such challenges as intimidating. The Advancement Project claims that up to 10 million Hispanics could be deterred from registering or voting, and while this is a very high estimate -- the assumption appears to be that Hispanics, absent the intimidation, would be much more likely to vote than other groups -- it seems clear that there will be some impact on participation.

And this, really, is the issue. The problem in this country isn't too many people voting, it's too few. We should be making it easier for people to vote, not harder, and we shouldn't be imposing requirements that have the same effect as a poll tax.

Courts may block some of the worst of the new restrictions, but some have already passed muster and gone into effect. These barriers can be overcome, however, with determination and perseverance. "We cannot let anyone discourage us from casting our ballots," the first lady said Saturday. "We cannot let anyone make us feel unwelcome in the voting booth. It is up to us to make sure that in every election, every voice is heard and every vote is counted." Indeed, it is up to us. Get registered. Get out and vote.

© 2012, Washington Post Writers Group

[-] 1 points by TommyNYC (730) 11 years ago

The Lizardarians are clearly here to convince us that voting is futile. We know better.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 11 years ago

A lot of people here are undecided on whether to vote or who to vote for. Name-calling doesn't seem to be a very good campaign strategy. Just a tip.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 11 years ago

What's stopping democrats and republicans from counting votes accurately? Why should the rest of us care?

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 11 years ago

Ask Washington or Jefferson or Adams or Franklin or Madison

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 11 years ago

Aren't they dead? History isn't my forte'.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 11 years ago

hchc, told me just yesterday that voter purges are inconsequential.

This seems to disagree with his assessment.

It's curious that he is an apologist for these kinds of behaviors.


[-] -2 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

The futility of voting should discourage all 300 million people.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

It's not voting that's futile, it's the voters http://occupywallst.org/forum/freeda-template/ . The voters can choose to legally demand conditions that will legally hold politicians accountable to their interests. So far, they haven't chosen to.

[-] 0 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

Oh, who runs the courts? The friends of the peeps who are breaking the laws.

Is this the court system you're talking about? http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/09/201291872137626701.html

Good luck with that one.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

It doesn't matter who runs the courts. If the courts don't uphold dishonored affidavits, the disenfranchised voters can engage in mass protest by any means necessary. Once every legal avenue has been exhausted, it always comes back to the people to support a due respect for their rights. After all, if they don't, no one else will.

[-] 0 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

I agree with everything you're saying, except that I don't view "voting" as a legitimate means to secure anything. As Mencken said, it is only an auction on stolen property.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

Though not a legitimate means of securing anything, without a system based upon reason as the rule of law, voting is the only thing this society has in its favor, and even then, only if it chooses to enforce its rights in the voting process and stand up for them if they're denied.

[-] -1 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

Compulsory voting only attempts to legitimize nonsense. Which is why refusing to vote reveals the state as the monster that it is. There is no vote on gravity, just like there is no vote on murder...so what are people forced to vote for? Whether they prefer to be beaten or raped? Or whether their neighbor should be beaten instead of them?

If rights come from our humanity, they cannot be granted by a government, nor a vote, and cannot be secured through either means. Voting is just a distraction.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

Rights don't come from our humanity. They come from a social recognition that is socially enforced.

[-] -1 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

Then there's nothing to enforce, and you get whatever scraps you can beg from the master's table.

I simply disagree.

[-] -2 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

Voting presupposes that principles could be changed by a vote. Why don't we just vote on gravity then? I'm tired of weighing so heavily on myself. Because no vote can change gravity. Can a vote change murder? Can a vote change theft?

Voting only makes sense if one voluntarily enters into the voting. If one is forced into the vote...it's just nonsense. We're going to take a vote, should we poke out your eye, or chop off your leg? Voting would attempt to legitimize theft and violence, and my point is that it doesn't, therefore, does nothing.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

Voting only recognizes a majority rule to enforce decisions.

[-] -1 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

I'm sure shooz will step in and make my point for me. In 3....2....

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 11 years ago

I wouldn't want want to disturb the fishes in your head.

Go ahead on with more endless bullshit.........:)

Sorry if I was late. Unlike you, I have a life.

[-] -2 points by thoreau42 (595) 11 years ago

And the majority of Americans are stupid. That should give you an indication into what decisions will be enforced.

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5909) 11 years ago

History is already an indication of that. That's why there was Prohibition.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 11 years ago

Don't paint your fish infested brain on the rest of the country, please.

[-] -2 points by alva (-442) 11 years ago

you mean illegals will be discouraged from voting? OR that legal hispanics are too dumb to get or have an ID?

[-] 0 points by CitizenofAmerika (-71) 11 years ago

That's what I was wondering.