May 31st, 2012

The Florida voter “purge”

I’ve read several articles about how the evil Republicans are purging the voter ranks in Florida at the eleventh hour in order to get rid of as many Democrats as possible, complete with egregious examples such as that of “Bill Internicola, a 91-yar-old World War II veteran, [who] was born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., and now lives in Florida’s Broward County.”

Mr. Internicola was (gasp!) asked to show proof of citizenship or be removed from the rolls, and he feels “insulted.” Mr. Internicola is entitled to feel however he wishes, and I honor his service, but he could just as easily have felt pleased that the state of Florida is careful that only citizens of the country he fought so hard to defend can vote in that state. No one has stopped him from voting, and I doubt anyone will, since he was able to document his citizenship.

So the outrage isn’t really about Mr. Internicola; he’s just a poster boy.

One objection seems to be that the campaign is being undertaken with little time to spare. I happen to agree with that criticism. I’ve noticed that around an election there are often energetic intentions to reform things before the next election, but then instead of dealing with the problems right afterward, they are somehow forgotten and neglected.

But other objections—that too many Hispanics are targeted, or too many Democrats—are preposterous. Of course any campaign to eliminate illegals from voting in Florida is going to hit Hispanics disproportionately; who else would be over-represented, members of the DAR? Or should it be random, like our stupidly PC method of airline passenger screening?

What would be relevant—and yet I’ve yet to see an article that goes into it—is a discussion of what criteria the state of Florida is actually using to select the people who will be receiving its letter. It is certainly possible that there is something unfairly discriminatory about the process, or something stupid. States have been known to do such things, after all, including the state of Florida in 1998-2006 regarding felons (although the errors in question were actually committed by a private firm hired by the state for the process). But so far I haven’t been able to find anything about what’s actually happening in the present case that might really be unfair, just a lot of huffing and puffing from journalists and officials.

6 Responses to “The Florida voter “purge””

  1. IGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States Says:

    Oh, stop trying to put reason and facts before overblown hype and rhetoric.

    They’re on a roll, neo, they need it to get the bandwagon going!


    They don’t like the look of it!!

  2. Arm The Homeless Says:

    “Of course any campaign to eliminate illegals from voting in Florida is going to hit Hispanics disproportionately; who else would be over-represented, members of the DAR?”

    –Aside from being painfully glib, you’re not even good at stereotyping. Among the various groups that flock to Florida, Canadians tend to be over-represented down here. Especially considering that following our construction-bust, much of the illegal Hispanic population moved with the work, which explains in part why this recession, unlike all the previous ones this century, finally gave us negative population growth here in the Sunshine State.

    If you were intent on scamming voter registration, wouldn’t you want to have a relatively melanin-deficient person who speaks English, natively, to have interactions with a poll worker, rather than what one would assume to be a population of immigrants who cannot pass as native English-speakers?

    Last I checked, it was the Conservative base which roused from its fainting couch long enough to grasp its unicam pearls at the tyranny inherent in a national voting card. plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

    I am sure you’re the first person to defend DMV workers for having a reputation as slavishly devoted to red-tape, since they are obviously making your life more difficult because they care so much about process.

  3. Sam L. Says:

    Who said anything about a national voting card?

  4. Richard Aubrey Says:

    When my dtr tried to get a drivers license in CA–she’s from Michigan–, she needed a birth cert or a passport.
    Melanin-heavy people who have no discernible English in line in front and in back were simply issued the license. No ID necessary.
    From which you can deduce my dtr has light brown hair and blue eyes.

  5. fiona Says:

    Republicans are targetting the Dem’s favorite demographic – the recently deceased. So obviously unfair that a person can’t vote just because they are dead… actually cross referencing the Social Security deceased files with voter lists, something SOE’s should have done.

  6. NeoConScum Says:

    Us Floridians are sooooooooooooooooo racist,’Yo. First we make sure the DemoSlime don’t steal the 2000 election and now we require valid-current-photo ID at the polling place. We Evil…We Wacist… We wuv wiberty.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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