Insights Into Tomorrow: Episode 8 “Voter Suppression”

We explore the controversial topic of voter suppression in this episode. We’ll take a look at the various forms of voter suppression dating back to the founding of our country up until the present time. We’ll investigate the various laws that on the surface were portrayed as a method of preserving the integrity of our voting system but in reality were tied to the ever present but rarely proven fear of voter fraud.

We dive deep into the current voter suppression techniques employed today that are designed to manipulate, inconvenience and disenfranchise a large portion of the voting public. We’ll discuss the corrupt, racist and anti-democratic motivations for such schemes and how they are eroding our political system.

Finally we’ll look to the future of voter suppression and the impact it will have on our country as a whole. All in an attempt to educate the voting public. Because if there’s one thing politicians fear it’s an informed, educated and motivate block of voters who are immune to the tried and true manipulative techniques that all politicians employ to gain themselves political office.

Show Notes

[INTRO THEME]

  • [INTRODUCTIONS] (3-5 minutes)
    • Show introduction:
      •  Insights Into Tomorrow
      • Episode: #8  Voter Suppression 
    • Host introductions
      • Host (Sam Whalen)
      • My co-host (Joseph Whalen)

[TRANSITION]

RIGMAROLE 

[TRANSITION] (Cohost opinion question ?)
  

  • [SEGMENT 2: Historical background/Symptoms and signs] (10-15 minutes)
    • https://people.howstuffworks.com/voter-suppression1.htm
    • https://bit.ly/3kORYso 
      • “U.S. Constitution does not explicitly include a right to vote” 
        • Only House of Representatives were to be elected “by the people” according to the Constitution
      • Who are “the people”
        • At first, only white, male, property owners. Some free black men
        • “All women, non-African-American minorities and many non-Christian religious groups were denied the franchise”
      • Post Reconstruction
        • 15th Amendment allowed vote regardless of “race, color, or previous condition of servitude”
        • 1877- “Dixiecrats” begin imposing Jim Crow laws to restrict the black vote
          • Literacy tests, poll taxes, direct violence or intimidation
        • “Only 3 percent of voting-age African-American southerners were registered to vote in 1940” source American Civil Liberty Union
      • Voting Rights Act of 1965
        • Did away with many Jim Crow era tactics, allowing women/ minority votes to open up
      • Segue
        • However, the story doesn’t end there. Racism and oppression didn’t disappear, new voter suppression methods still in use today. 
      • Common Modern Voter Suppression techniques
        • Voter registration problems
          • Not all states require registration
          • Confusion on where and when to register
          • Confusion over what you need to register
        • Voter purges
          • Laws vary by state
          • States can purge voters from registration if they haven’t voted in as few as two years
          • Purges done selectively to disenfranchise minority groups
        • Strict Voter ID and ballot requirements
          • Laws vary by state
          • Some states require gov’t issued ID’s to vote
          • This impedes low income, disabled and immigrant residents
        • Voter Confusion
          • Misinformation from political parties to confuse voters
          • Messaging from official and unofficial polling can be confusing and inconsistent
          • Incorrect ballots invalidate voters choices
        • Voter intimidation and harassment
          • Racially motivated scare tactics often employed to prevent citizens from voting
          • Fake robocalls from hate groups pretending to be candidates
          • Inappropriate questioning at polling locations to intimidate voters
        • Poll closures and long lines
          • Vote suppression by imposing artificially long lines discourages citizens from waiting to vote
          • Premature or early poll closings occur to influence blocks of voters in certain districts
        • Malfunctioning voting equipment
          • Failures of voting technology, whether intentional or not alter and/or deny’s votes registered
          • Aging and broken down voting machines at polling locations contribute to long lines and poll closures
          • External attack vectors of computerized voting tallies used to skew results
        • Disenfranchisement of justice-involved individuals
          • Approximately 6 million americans are barred from voting due to felony convictions that disenfranchise them
          • Laws vary by state and are often confusing
        • Gerrymandering
          • Politicians manipulate voting redistricting in ridiculous ways to shape the voting pools
          • This is a blatant attempt to manipulate the voting population and has direct and lasting impact on election results

[AD1] (1 minute)

  • [SEGMENT 3: Current conditions/Source of Symptoms and Signs] (10-15 minutes)
    • https://people.howstuffworks.com/voter-suppression2.htm
      • Disinformation
        • Highly popular and effective modern method
          • 2008 elections, Democrats in Nevada received robo-calls informing them that they could vote on November 5 — a day after the election — to avoid long lines
          • Trump’s attempts to discredit mail in voting (https://abc7.com/amp/donald-trump-usps-funding-postal-service/6368807/?__twitter_impression=true)
            • In the past 20 years, 0.00006 percent of all mail-in ballots cast were fraudulent. “There is no support for the argument that mail-in voting is a problem,” says Lorraine Minnite, a political-science professor at Rutgers University and author of The Myth of Voter Fraud.
          • CO HOST QUESTION
          • Documentary: The Great Hack
            • Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal
              • Trump Campaign engaged with Cambridge Analytica to microtargeting to influence election
              • Cambridge Analytica was employed to influence elections in over 30 countries
                • US, UK, Argentina, Columbia, Guyana, Uruguay…
      • Voter ID (https://www.aclu.org/other/oppose-voter-id-legislation-fact-sheet
      • https://bit.ly/2Y6d4Zo
        ACLU
        • Millions of Americans Lack ID. 11% of U.S. citizens – or more than 21 million Americans – do not have government-issued photo identification.
        • Obtaining ID Costs Money. Even if ID is offered for free, voters must incur numerous costs (such as paying for birth certificates) to apply for a government-issued ID.
        • Underlying documents required to obtain ID cost money, a significant expense for lower-income Americans. The combined cost of document fees, travel expenses and waiting time are estimated to range from $75 to $175.2
        • The travel required is often a major burden on people with disabilities, the elderly, or those in rural areas without access to a car or public transportation. In Texas, some people in rural areas must travel approximately 170 miles to reach the nearest ID office
        • COHOST QUESTION/SEGUE 
          • My elderly mother was one of these 11%
            • She never drove, never had a need to
            • She had to get a state issued ID when she filed for retirement benefits from my father’s retirement plan and for government programs such as Medicare and Social Security

[AD2] (1 minute)
  

  • [SEGMENT 4: The Future/Solutions to the issues] (10-15 minutes)
    • https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/trump-campaign-2020-voter-suppression-consent-decree-1028988/
      • 2020 election
        • RNC has filed over $20 million worth of lawsuits dealing with voting
          • “Some attempt to block litigation brought by Democratic groups to expand mail-in voting in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Others seek to invalidate state-level policies by saying that expanding access to mail-in ballots invites fraud.” – Rolling Stone
          • Rick Hasen, a University of California, Irvine law professor and author of Election Meltdown, goal “Casting doubt on the legitimacy of the election. Raising spurious fraud claims.”
        • Continued disinformation
          • Use of COVID 19 to stir up fear of the election being in danger when in reality precautions are being taken to save lives
            • “The group has run ads that warn against “risky new methods” like mail-in ballots, and accused Wisconsin Democrats of sowing election “chaos” after the state’s Republicans refused to send every voter an absentee ballot or delay its April primary election because of COVID-19” Rolling Stone

[TRANSITION]

  • [CLOSE]
    • Final thoughts/summary COHOST
    • Call to Action
      • Upcoming 2020 election, inform yourself, we only scraped the service
      • It’s bigger than just Trump on Twitter. Systematic and designed to control. Looking at the past helps inform about the future, especially with this topic. Similar tactics are being employed and are still working. 
      • Do your own research, make your own conclusions, and keep an open but suspicious mind. 

[OUTRO AND CREDITS]

Transcription

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