Rigging the Vote
Critics say GOP tactics strip African Americans of a coveted Constitutional right. What are they trying to do? What should you know?
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After State Rep. Fred Durhal Jr. (D-Detroit) fought to stop Republicans election reform bills he believed would hinder the right to vote, he concluded something more sinister was behind the legislation than any real concern over voter fraud.
Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson and her colleagues said voting requirements needed to be tightened to combat potential “voter fraud,” but Durhal recognized a pattern of similar legislation spreading like wildfire across the nation just before the presidential election.
Instead of stopping voter fraud, Durhal said his conservative colleagues were undermining American democracy by limiting citizens’ right to vote with election reform “schemes.”
“These are supposed to be the guys who are hyper-patriots and yet, here they are violating their own Constitution and doing things that are unpatriotic and un-American” he said. “They literally want you not to vote—it’s just extreme, more extreme than the John Birch Society.”
Although the most onerous components of the election reform bills were ultimately vetoed by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder because they would create voter confusion, the package drew national attention and outrage, placing Michigan squarely in to the middle of the debate over Republican voter suppression efforts across the country.