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With Few Watching, Republicans Have Put in Place New Poll Tax to Disenfranchise Voters


With Few Watching, Republicans Have Put in Place New Poll Tax to Disenfranchise Voters

Robert Reich

Preventing people from voting because they owe legal fees or court fines muzzle low-income Americans at a time in our nation’s history when the rich have more political power than ever.


The Republicans are certainly making it obvious that their only chance of staying in power is suppressing the vote (and maybe hoping Putin favors their candidates). The demographics are strongly against them and getting worse. And their legislation proposals tick off almost everyone except the most wealthy Americans and even some of them are fed up with the Republicans. They are using the states that they control to gain power at the federal level and local level. And not only by suppressing votes. When North Carolina elected a Democratic governor they took away most of his powers. More and more frequently they overrule laws passed in cities that that are controlled by Democrats, and most of the larger cities are controlled by Democrats. The Republicans are clearly trying to thwart the will of the people throughout the United States.


With all that the wacko-righto-wingo’s have done since Mr. “O” was first elected, in totality, I’d say it’s domestic terrorism, just shy of treason. It sure is perversion of the founding documents and principles of the country. To have to wait for a court case or an election is very frustrating to say the least but to do other wise would be folly.


On this and pretty much every issue, my recommendation for Reich and all Democrats is to emphasize what they are for after explaining how bad it is what Republicans are for. Just saying we wouldn’t do this (of course Ds wouldn’t do it as it is not in their interest - if it was, a certain percentage of them would be for it).

I refer to Ds in third person because though I will vote for them around 1/2 the time and I support efforts to reform them by progressives, they don’t inspire me enough to want to identify with that label.


In my lifetime, Republican politicians have always evinced a subtle (and now not subtle) disbelief in democracy.
Thom Hartmann had a program a year or so ago in which he asserted that this ludicrous (now, borderline seditionist) party has not legitimately won a presidential election since Eisenhower.
That they continue to get away with this is so profoundly anti-American it is beyond belief.


I’m not a Democrat,
but I’M DAMN SURE NOT A Republican!


Democrats say what they are for all time (racial and ethnic tolerance, opportunity for everyone, increase taxes for the the rich and don’t increase taxes on the middle class, protect the environment, fight climate change, protect the ACA and work towards universal health care coverage, etc). I think some people are unhappy because these statements do not go far enough with regard to democratic socialism (as Bernie Sanders defines it). Many Democrats have not come out in favor of single-payer health care coverage, free tuition at all public colleges and universities, etc.


I’m butting in here for a moment…when I was a kid my brother went to college at ASU tuition free, he had to buy his room/board and books. In the 60’s that was the way it was if you were in-state and had the grades you could go anywhere. If you were out-of state, had the grades you paid tuition. Ronnie Raygun changed all that. Our education system has been broken since 1980 and Raygun.


Interesting. I thought the only free tuition in the 1960s was in California and City College in NYC. What did Reagan do that changed college tuition? I don’t agree the US education is system is broken. Actually I think higher education in the US is the best higher education in the world. Certainly it is with regard to quality.


I think it actually may have been when he was Gov. of CA. and then it spread out. During the late 50 and into the mid 70’s our higher Ed. was untouchable, now?, not so much. In my opinion.


Priced out of the polling booth


What I mean is that in every case where someone is rightly assailing a Republican position, there needs to be a bold progressive vision that makes very clear how things are going to change if Democrats take over and become a strong majority (strong enough to ignore blue dogs). From my vantage point this means coming togehter on single payer and $15 minimum wage at a minimum. But in this post, I am only thinking of the relavent topic - voting. Just what reform do the Democrat’s propose? If there is something agreed upon Reich should be also talking about that. Our voting system has a huge number of problems but I almost never hear Democrats talking about at them and what they want to do about them. For me, I’d want to hear about things that may not be constitutionally possible right away but are the right answer. Common ballots, mail in from all 50 states, mandatory voting or strong incentives to vote (‘none of the above’ is a valid vote and should be allowed to force a revote). Many other things are possible we just have to keep the conversation going.


The one thing the Democrats are doing now is trying to combat gerrymandering. Eric Holder is leading the effort. The Democrats have joined up with Organizing for Action to add a grassroots component. That is the number one priority of the Democrats at this time. Somewhat related is an effort by the ACLU to make voting easier. They are using their grassroots movement People Power to try to accomplish this. They are working on this in all 50 states. What the ACLU is working on varies from state to state since each state has different laws on voting. Everything can’t be left up to the Democrats.


Shouldn’t there be some legal challenge to this? I have never heard of a functioning democracy deny the vote to anyone who owes a debt. America - worlds greatest country huh?

Every day I thank the goddesses for my birth in a country not so appallingly hypocritical.

In other news I see Trump is riling up possible North Korean retaliation.

Please be safe my good American people. I fear Trump will have us all killed eventually.