Last week, the U.S. Solicitor General took the unusual step of reinterpreting a 24-year-old federal statute specifically designed to convenience voting in order to switch sides in a pending Supreme Court case that centers on Ohio’s aggressive purging of voter rolls. The Trump Justice Department now sides with Ohio, which contends that not voting for six years — and then not responding to a single mailing asking the voter to confirm his or her registration — is sufficient to remove that person from state voter rolls. That should cause no small amount of alarm. It’s part of a broader effort by the Trump administration to restrict voting rights under the guise of fighting fraud, which is nearly non-existent. The true purpose is to keep from the polls individuals who are less likely to support Republican candidates or causes. And it’s a potential stake through the heart of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, also known as the “Motor Voter Act,” which was meant to expand, not shrink, the nation’s voter registration rolls.
Critics contend that there are too many individuals on voter rolls who should not be there, including people who moved away or perhaps even died, and that’s absolutely true. But it’s one thing to clean up the rolls in a surgical manner and quite another to make wholesale dumps that inevitably harm legitimate voters.
The motor voter law specifically bans the practice of purging for failing to vote. The administration now contends that not responding to a mailed notice after failing to vote is another matter altogether.
Full Article: Purging voter rolls to suppress turnout – Baltimore Sun.