Voting rights advocates are preparing for a “perfect storm of chaos” on Election Day — and not just because a hurricane has already affected registrations in some key battleground states. Reports of voter disenfranchisement have already cropped up during early voting, the advocates say. Some Texas election officials are implementing a voter ID law that a federal appeals court struck down as discriminatory. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has said he fears the election will be rigged and urged voters to “go out and watch the polls,” prompting fears of voter intimidation among minorities, particularly. This will be the first presidential election since 1964 without the full protections of the Voting Rights Act. In 2013, the Supreme Court struck down a key enforcement provision in the civil rights law that required certain states to check any election changes with the Justice Department. Because of that decision, the DOJ says it will send poll observers to far fewer states that have a history of disenfranchising voters this year. The department monitored 28 jurisdictions in 18 states in 2014 and 51 jurisdictions in 23 states in 2012.
“All of those factors are coming together to make the most problematic election in 50 years” in terms of voter suppression or intimidation, said Wade Henderson, president of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “We have literally a perfect storm of chaos.”
Voter advocates are preparing to respond to the worst, hoping for the best and trying to get ahead of the problem now that in-person early voting has started in some states. More than 5.9 million people have already voted through Oct. 23, according to Michael P. McDonald, an associate political science professor at the University of Florida who tracks early voting on the United States Election Project.
Full Article: Voting Rights Groups Brace for Election Day ‘Chaos‘.