Heather Cox Richardson tells us (or reminds us, for the old folks) that Republican lies about voter fraud are just the latest attacks on Democracy which have been “part and parcel of Republican governance” for decades
I remember voter purges across several states well before Donald Trump’s candidacy, which knocked hundreds of thousands of people off the roles. In describing one effort to purge legitimate voters in Louisiana in 1986, Richardson quotes a National Republican Committee member boasting, “This could keep the Black vote down considerably”
Republican anti-democratic tactics include purges, closing polls in poor neighborhoods, biased ID requirements (like accepting handgun licenses but not student IDs), making it legally dangerous to register voters (see Democracy in One Book or Less by David Litt, chapter 3), and making it difficult for people who lost their right to vote to regain it.
Any law that makes it difficult to vote disproportionately affects those who face difficulties to begin with – like those who have transportation or child care challenges, who work long or unusual hours, or who have recently moved. People in those groups are more likely to be Democrats.
But when Republican efforts to prevent likely Democratic voters from casting a vote aren’t enough to keep Republicans in power, they turn to overturning election results.
Today’s election deniers are just the latest strain of vote-denying Republicans, and if they gain more power this year, elections will be less fair in years to come than they have been since before the sixties.
The first step to restoring progress in Democracy is to vote.