Saturday, July 26, 2008

Are LA voters being disenfranchised?

Three States Accused of Illegally Purging Voter Lists | Democracy and Elections | AlterNet
Last week, Project Vote, which is working in two dozen states to register voters in 2008, sent a letter to Dardenne saying his state appeared to be ignoring sections of the NVRA that require that voters be notified by mail over two federal election cycles before being removed. Project Vote's attorney said Louisiana Commissioner of Elections Angie LaPlace was treating apparently duplicate database listings as "cases of suspected fraud or some other irregularity."

Last year, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund sued Louisiana over the purging of registrations of refugees from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Many people who applied for a driver's license in a neighboring state -- to quickly acquire an ID after losing their belongings in the storms -- also were registered to vote without their knowledge, NAACP attorneys said. Those new voter registrations resulted in 21,000 voters being removed from Louisiana voter rolls last August, the group said. While the NAACP suit was dismissed, Project Vote's recent letter suggests the state's voter list maintenance practices have not changed. Project Vote also wrote to the U.S. Department of Justice about the matter, as the agency oversees federal elections in most Southern states as a result of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

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