Just blocks from the arena where Republicans kicked off their presidential nominating convention here Monday, Democrats held an event of their own — on voting rights. “A lot of us are fiercely protective of voting rights,” Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., told a packed room, reminding attendees that “a lot of blood was spilled,” in the battle to win voting rights for blacks. He and other speakers at the two-hour town hall urged pastors, community leaders and others to rally voters to go to the polls this fall. “We have to be clear — it’s about who you’re for, but it’s also who your against,’’ he said. “And somewhere in the middle ought to be the energy for you to go vote. For whatever reason, you need to go.’’ Democratic Rep. Marcia Fudge of Ohio, former chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, hosted the “United State of Voting’’ event at Cleveland State University. A few blocks away, thousands of Republicans, including a delegation from Mississippi, began their four-day convention.
Referring to presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump, Thompson said it’s important that Democratic activists “demonstrate that there’s somebody running who’s got problems with women. There’s somebody who’s got a problem with Mexicans. There’s somebody who’s got problems with Muslims and God knows what else.’’
Voting rights has been a divisive partisan issue. Democrats and civil rights groups have challenged Republican-drafted state voter ID laws and other election changes that they say are designed to suppress voter turnout among minorities and other groups that tend to vote Democratic. Several of those laws, including Mississippi’s voter ID law, have yet to be tested in a presidential election.
Full Article: Democrats promote voting rights blocks from GOP convention.