Texas judge invalidates Voter ID law; GAO finds such laws depress turnout | Arkansas Blog

Friday, October 10, 2014

Texas judge invalidates Voter ID law; GAO finds such laws depress turnout

Posted By on Fri, Oct 10, 2014 at 6:33 AM

A federal judge in Texas has enjoined enforcemen
t of the Texas voter ID law. The judge said the law amounted to a poll tax that discriminated against minorities.

Arguments in Texas mirror those made in a case pending before the Arkansas Supreme Court. 

Republicans have admitted that national efforts to pass voter ID laws were intended to depress voter turnout along constituencies — poor, college students, minorities — that tend to favor Democratic candidates. The Arkansas law, which took effect this year, disenfranchised hundreds of absentee voters in the primary elections and perhaps had deeper impact.

A General Accounting Office study, reported by the Washington Post, indicates voter ID laws have suppressed voter turnout, with disproportionate impact among black, young and newly registered voters. This is a plus for Republicans, with their motivated Tea Party and social issue base.

In response to a request from a group of Democratic senators, the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office analyzed the effect of voter ID laws in Kansas and Tennessee on 2012 turnout. Their findings? Turnout dropped at least 1.9 percentage points in Kansas and 2.2 percentage points in Tennessee thanks to the laws. By our calculations, that's 122,000 fewer votes.

The 200-plus-page report looks at several issues related to laws aimed at tightening rules around voting. The GAO compiled detailed data on various demographic groups in states that changed their laws, reviewed past studies on the effects of new laws on turnout, and attempted to gather data on instances of voter fraud, the rationale usually provided for changing voting rules. Democrats counter that the laws are thinly veiled efforts to reduce the number of their supporters that vote, by adding additional obstacles to black and young voters.

The GAO report suggests that, intentional or not, that's what happened in Kansas and Tennessee. 

It's enough to make you angry. For some righteous indignation, see Lewis Black above. He's a spokesmen for the ACLU, which is fighting these vote suppression laws in Arkansas and other states.

Tags: , , ,


Comments (6)

Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Among the last words from Kenneth Williams: 'Finger Lickin' Good Fried Chicken'

    What's purported to be a final-words essay from condemned prisoner Kenneth Williams was distributed today by Deborah Robinson, a freelance journalist in Arkansas.  He reflects on his execution, his victims, reactions of inmates and big servings of fried chicken, which he says are given to all inmates on execution days.
    • Apr 27, 2017
  • The LR chamber does the public's business. Is it accountable? Blue Hog on the case.

    Matt Campbell, lawyer and Blue Hog Report blogger, has sent a Freedom of Information Act request to Jay Chessir, director of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Mayor Mark Stodola related to the publicity stunt yesterday  built around withdrawing from the mayor's rash pronouncement that the city would seek an Amazon HQ2 project even though the city  didn't meet the company's criteria.
    • Oct 20, 2017
  • Presidential thriller, co-author Bill Clinton, coming to bookstores in 2018

    June 2018 is the expected publication date for a novel collaboration by former President Bill Clinton and crime writer James Patterson.
    • May 9, 2017


  • Arkansas vs Ole Miss at War Memorial stadium in Little Rock, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2018. After leading for much of the game, Arkansas lost 37-33 when Ole Miss scored the game winning Touchdown with less that 2 minutes left. 
  • Margaret Clark Adventure Park
    New sculptures, preschoolers play area dedicated in Riverfront Park in Little Rock.

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation