Purging the Roles of Inactive Voters | Fighting Fraud or Suppressing Turnout

By | November 6, 2017

Purging the rolls of Inactive Voters, is this Ohio’s way of disenfranchising voters?

Ohio purging the rolls of inactive voters.  Is this a case of Buckeye State house-cleaning, or a sinister approach to disenfranchise a swath of voters who you claim is illegally casting votes?  You can bet the Elephants and Donkeys in D.C. will never see trunk to snout on this issue!  Other states are taking notice and are also trying to shore up their voting apparatus, and geez who could blame them.  The Elephants believe stronger voting measures will cut down on fraud.  A valid concern for sure, given that the Elephants believe fraud was rampant in California in the 2016 election.  For the Republican candidate to do so well in most other states, but yet only convince 31.6 % of the Golden State residents to pull the lever for their candidate, leads you to believe something nefarious was going on.  So, the potential for fraud is real, especially in such diverse states as California and New York.

How do other States handle the rolls of Inactive voters?

the roles of inactive votersThe Donkeys, as you may have guessed, don’t buy the fraud argument.  Instead they see Voting ID laws as a barrier for minorities and lower-income folks, and their ability to turn out to vote.  Whatever the case, some states (mostly Republican) are forging ahead and solidifying their voter ID laws while they feel they have the upper hand.    Take for instance Missouri, They have instituted a new voter ID law, compliments of their new Republican Super-Majority Utopia.  Indiana has had a voter ID law since before it was cool, and it even stood a challenge from the Supreme Court in 2008, three years after it commenced.

Then there’s Virginia, where you have the Elephants doing their best to install tougher voting standards, only to be blocked by the swift pen of its Democratic Governor.  Look out though, as Virginia has an Elephant vying for the keys to the Governors mansion which will be left by its ‘termed out’ Democratic Governor.  And, according to many polls, the Elephant candidate is doing very well in the polling.  The swearing in of an Elephant Governor may be just what the State of Virginia needs to pass its hard-fought voter ID law.

Given the prickly nature of voting laws, it leads me to question- if this were 1884 all over again, what would the Mugwumps think of Voter ID laws?  The answer likely lies in some of the significant events happening back then.  First of all, the Civil War was over, Reconstruction was in full swing, and because of the 15th amendment, slaves could now vote.  During the 1880’s immigration laws were enforced by each individual State, rather than a federal agency.  In the 1880’s thanks to the advent of the steam engine, immigrants were leaving places like Ireland, Norway, and even England, for the opportunities in the United States.  Throughout the 1880-90’s, some 12 million immigrants made the arduous journey to the US in the hopes of finding new opportunity, and best of all-Freedom, in this great Nation.

However, not everyone was welcome.  Think todays version of extreme vetting is arcane or unfair; it may be, but it’s seems rather diluted compared to what was agreed upon in Congress and ultimately became law, in 1882.  The law; called The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, was where the government was trying to ‘even the playing field’ for American jobs, so their thought was to strictly limit Chinese labor.  Hey, at least both the Donkeys and Elephants agreed back then that jobs in this country should go to American citizens first, rather than giving precedence to imported labor.

So, what say the Mugwumps:

So, a lot was changing with regard to the demographics of this county in the 1880’s.  The Mugwumps, seemed to be in favor of immigration, though it seemed they had an affinity toward Irish Immigrants, as many Paddy’s immigrated to Mugwump states such as New York and Massachusetts.   So, what would be their thoughts on Voter ID laws?  If I could read the tea leaves and make an educated assessment; I am guessing they would favor them.  They appeared to expect an immigrant to possess certain traits.  Are they of working age, will they assimilate, will they act in a productive manner and offer something of value to this country?  If voting laws could control the assurance of these characteristics in an immigrant, then my belief is the Mugwumps would have been all for it!