Defending Voter Repression

9 10 2007

Brad Blog has recently reported that the chief of the voting section within the civil rights division of the U.S. Justice Department John Tanner not only admitted that elderly voters may be disenfranchised by voter ID laws, but that since minority elderly voters die first, they won’t really feel the brunt of the discrimination.  

“I think it’s probably true that among those who don’t, it’s primarily elderly persons. And that’s a shame,” he said, adding “You know, creating problems for elderly persons just is not good under any circumstance.”

With it apparently okay to disenfranchise the elderly, Tanner then goes on to contend that minorities, on the other hand, are not disenfranchised by such laws.

“Of course, that also ties in with a racial aspect, because our society is such that minorities don’t become elderly. The way that white people do. They die first,” Tanner explained to those of us in the room.

“So anything that disproportionately impacts the elderly, has the opposite impact on minorities. Just, the math is such as that,” he said, concluding, “The minorities in Georgia, statistically, slightly, are more likely to have ID.”

In other words, Tanner concludes that Photo ID laws actually negatively impact non-minorities and seemingly give minorities a greater voice.

Brad Blog also has the video to prove it.

According to the Justice Department’s website, the voting section primiarly enforces the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which is the most sucessful civil rights law in U.S. history, and  

effectuates the 15th Amendment’s permanent guarantee that, throughout the nation, no person shall be denied the right to vote on account of race or color. In addition, the Act contains several special provisions that impose even more stringent requirements in certain jurisdictions throughout the country.

I suppose the Constitution and long standing civil rights laws mean nothing to John Tanner.

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