A pop quiz on voter suppression measures
Our Florida legislative session ended on April 30. The League of Women Voters has worked tirelessly to try to counter legislation that suppresses or makes it more difficult for citizens to vote.
Sadly, most of the bills the League opposed in Florida and across the country passed. As Mark Lane pointed out in his column published Tuesday in The Sun, the SB 90 has been softened, not defeated.
If you’ve been following the state of voting rights across the country, you might like to test your knowledge with a short quiz that the Women’s League Voter Education Fund released this week on the latest tactics. suppression of voters who sweep state legislatures. Here is:
1) How many bills were introduced in 2021 to restrict voting rights?
If you answered e, you are correct. More than 250 bills to restrict voting rights have been introduced in 43 states, an unprecedented move that could deprive millions of eligible voters of the right to vote.
2) Georgia recently passed a radical bill to limit access to voting. What is the new law for?
a. Halve early voting periods and limit early voting to weekdays only.
b. Make it a crime for volunteers to provide food or water to voters in line.
vs. Require absent voters to submit documents proving their identity.
D. Cut the window to request a mail ballot 11 to four days before an election.
e. Require election officials to report election results by 10 p.m. on election night.
F. All of the above.
If you have answered all of the above questions, you are correct. Georgia’s bill does all of this and more. Nearly 100 pages long, the Georgian bill deliberately targets Black, Latin American, Asian American, Indigenous and other colored voters in a direct attempt to eliminate the 2020 voting rights gains.
3) True or False: An election official in Iowa who provides a request for a postal ballot without first receiving a request could be subject to criminal penalties.
If you answered true, you are correct. Under Iowa’s new law, local officials who violate the new restrictions, including proactively sending all registered voters a request to vote by mail, face up to five years in prison.
4) Federal For the People law would overturn Citizens United, the Supreme Court ruling that opened the floodgates to unlimited spending in elections. What else would the For the People Act do?
a. Adopt automatic voter registration in all 50 states.
b. Restore the right to vote for returning citizens.
vs. Make early voting available nationwide.
D. Prohibit gerrymandering and establish independent redistribution commissions to redraw the maps of Congress.
e. All of the above and more.
If you answered e, you are correct. The League supports many provisions of the For the People Act, which restores key provisions of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and strengthens voting rights and ethical laws, and fills gaps in campaign finance.
The League will continue to support legislation that encourages and supports the vote of all eligible voters.
In addition, the League will continue to be active in the efforts of returning citizens and we will be active in discussions regarding the redistribution.
Lynn Frazier is president of the League of Voters of Alachua County.