Newsflash:
Progressive Democrats of America

When Montravias King, a senior at North Carolina's historically black Elizabeth City State University, showed up at a hearing before the Pasquotank County Board of Elections earlier this month to defend his bid for a city council seat, he faced off against Richard "Pete" Gilbert, the local Republican Party chair.

It was Primary Day in Alabama on Tuesday and the first time since passage of the law that the state's Republican-enacted polling place Photo ID restriction on voting has been in place. Sure enough, the voter suppression law was successful, as voters were immediately disenfranchised by the new restriction, according to Zach Roth at MSNBC...

It was a sunny March morning when Ohio State Sen. Nina Turner (D) and her small band boarded the No. 4 bus, beginning their trek from the Walnut Hills neighborhood of Cincinnati to a proposed new county Board of Elections in Mount Airy.

The trip, she said, was meant to show how a decision to move early voting from downtown to the suburbs would make it extremely difficult for Hamilton County voters that didn’t have a vehicle.

In its 2013 decision in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, the Supreme Court ruled 7-2 that Arizona’s proof of citizenship law for voter registration violated the 1993 National Voter Registration Act (NVRA).

In 2004, Ohio had the longest lines in the country on Election Day, with some voters—particularly in large urban areas—waiting as long as seven hours to vote. A DNC survey estimated that 174,000 Ohioans—3 percent of the state’s electorate—left without voting. George W. Bush won the state by just 118,000 votes.

A federal judge ruled today that members of the North Carolina General Assembly do not have absolute immunity and protection from releasing crucial emails and other internal documents related to their motivations and rationale for passing what is arguably one of the most restrictive and harmful voter suppression laws in the nation.

Just over a week ago, The BRAD BLOG's legal analyst Ernie Canning posited that the decision by a federal court in Wisconsin to strike down that state's polling place Photo ID law could signal "the beginning of the end" for such disenfranchising, Republican-enacted laws around the nation.

A federal judge struck down Wisconsin's voter identification law Tuesday, declaring that a requirement that voters show a state-issued photo ID at the polls imposes an unfair burden on poor and minority voters.

Last week, top staff of the N.C. State Board of Elections made a presentation to legislators about the state of voter registration in North Carolina. Out of the board's 58-page PowerPoint presentation [pdf], only two of the slides (34 and 35) related to the Interstate Crosscheck, a project run by the Kansas secretary of state to root out suspected voter fraud.

The fierce partisan battle over voting rights has both sides planning to pour massive amounts of money and resources into a handful of key 2014 campaigns for secretary of state. The new-found attention for these once-obscure races is driven by an awareness on both sides that a state’s top election official can play a critical role in expanding or restricting the right to vote—meaning control of secretary of state offices in swing states could be crucial in the 2016 presidential contest.

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