Iowa Moves 294,000 Registered Voters to “Inactive” Status

New York Times

Black Democrats fear it’s too late to push the right to vote

Jackson, Miss — Voting rights were fought by Frank Figgers as a racist high school student in Jackson in the 1960s. That’s why Medgar Evers died when he was shot dead outside his home in the city in 1963 after working at the state’s NAACP. Figgers, 71, remembers learning about it the day the Evers assassination took place. He remembers the anger it stimulated. “When people say we’re fighting the same thing, we really are,” he said sitting at the local Masonic lodge where Evers once had an office. “We were fighting in 1865 and 1965. We were fighting in 2015, but we are fighting in 2021.” Sign up for The Morning Newsletter in New York Times Now. Democrats are repulsing as Republicans across the country impose new restrictions on voting. In parliament, the party is pushing for a huge overhaul of the constituency, removing constituencies from politicians, introducing automatic voter registration, and regaining previously imprisoned electoral rights. For some black Democrats in the South, the fact that this battle is happening altogether is a serious failure of Democratic politics and policy in 2021. In an interview, more than 20 Southern Democrats and citizenship activists were slow to fight Republican gerrymandering and voting restrictions, overconfident in their progress, and voter oppression was Jim Crow’s past. I explained about the party trying to accept that. But black leaders also face unexpected resistance from lawmakers who fear that a drastic bill in parliament, known as People’s Law, could endanger their seats primarily in the black district. There is. Republicans often used constituency change laws to pack black Democrats into a single house district. This practice has diminished the Democratic influence regionally, but each southern state has at least one predominantly black district, guaranteeing a black representative in the waters of the mostly white and conservative house district. doing. Some black Democrats in the South have so far remained relatively modest about these self-preservation concerns, fearing that they will prioritize their interests over party agendas and activist priorities. doing. Still, suspicions were raised last month when Bennie Thompson, a member of the Figgers district, including Jackson, unexpectedly voted “no” to the House’s federal election bill. Recently, other members of the Congressional Black Caucus have given Democratic leaders the importance of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, including the requirement that some states obtain federal approval before changing the election law. We call for a narrower focus on the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, which aims to restore the realm. — Rather than promoting a radical provision of People’s Law, officially known as HR 1, Prosecutor Eric Holder, who served under former President Barack Obama, said in a recent interview that the Democratic Party is now unifying its strategy A few years after Republicans revealed them, they said they were just asking for. “When it comes to constituency changes, the Democratic response wasn’t very sophisticated, focused, or technically backed up like the Republicans,” he said. Congressman Mondea Jones, a major ally of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and a supporter of the bill, agreed with this sentiment but blamed the Obama administration. “The Democrats are absolutely late to see the urgency of voting rights,” Jones said. “If they weren’t late, we would have done something about it during the Obama administration. At that time we needed HR1.” The For the People Act was a decisive clash in the Senate this summer. It will be one of. The White House will face pressure from its moderate and progressive side, and the act tests Senator Democrats’ commitment to filibuster. It’s unclear how far the Democrats are pushing the bill, even after former President Donald Trump wages a public war against the outcome of the last election and Republicans have proposed new voter restrictions in more than 40 states. Is. Major Democratic senators, such as West Virginia moderate Joe Manchin, are skeptical of some parts of the voting bill. The House of Representatives has also not yet fully passed its ancillary bill, the John Lewis Voting Rights Act (HR 4). For Jackson’s close voting community, members see themselves as Figgers and Evers-type torchbearers. Evidence of prolonged urgency. “If the people most affected by this were white, Democrats would have done something about it long ago,” said Rukia Rumba, executive director of the Jackson People’s Defense Institute. Her brother was the mayor of Jackson, and her late father also played that role. “They thought,’Oh, that’s just the South.’ I didn’t expect what we experienced here to come to the rest of the country.” Now to the constituency change and ballot The holder, who runs a group focused on access to the senator, said he would encourage senators to pass filibuster and pass ballot, if necessary. His group and its partners will spend $ 30 million to propose bills to voters in states with key senators such as Arizona, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. “Betting is a condition of our democracy,” said Holder. “This is more than a party of who wins and who loses.” Game. I’m really worried that if we don’t succeed in HR1 or HR4, our democracy will be fundamentally and irreparably undermined. “Elections are held every two or four years, which can be almost meaningless,” he added. Holder also found that he was acting like a voting ambassador among Democrats. Last month, on a virtual phone call with the Congressional Black Caucus, some of the older members of the Caucus were brought in because they had deep reservations about people’s law. According to those familiar with the calling plan, the rare rift between Democratic leaders and groups was often referred to as the “conscience of Congress.” In fact, Thompson was the only Democrat to vote against the bill in the House of Representatives, overturning his position as a former co-sponsor. In the weeks that followed, Thompson responded to explain his vote from the New York Times, or to members who say it is at odds with the rich history of the Southern Democratic Party, which defends black voting rights. I declined some requests. In a short statement given to Fox News last month, Thompson said through his office that “my members opposed the subdivision and finance section of the bill.” However, in an interview, members of all major civil rights groups in Jackson expressed surprise in his vote, even if they were obedient to his judgment. “Of course, we noticed that,” said Arechia Bennett, secretary-general of the youth-led group Mississippi Voting. “But it’s unclear why he really is.” Nsombi Lambright-Haynes, who heads One Voice, one of the region’s top voting groups, said Thompson’s civil rights record had benefited him from suspicion. “We assume we don’t know the full story, so we’re wary of talking about it,” she said. Those familiar with Thompson’s ideas, who discussed personal conversations on condition of anonymity, said the House of Representatives vote would dilute the composition of predominantly black districts like himself by an independent constituency change committee. He said it reflected greater fear among some black elected civil servants. Proponents like Holder say the bill addresses concerns about keeping black districts intact. Jones, part of a wave of new parliamentarians who rocked black executives, said concerns about how subdivision would affect black districts were transgenerational rather than ideological. “Parliament is a very comfortable place for members to be accustomed to the status quo, as long as it benefits them in elections,” he said. “If Congress doesn’t have a majority of Democrats, it’s okay to have 70 members of the Congressional Black Caucus.” Meanwhile, in Jackson, the For the People Act has rights to a previous conviction of a felony. It could be the difference in regaining the voting rights of deprived people. Groups such as OneVoice and MississippiVotes said they are paying attention to state voting restrictions. State voting restrictions have skyrocketed since the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision to remove the voting rights requirement, primarily for some southern states, to obtain federal approval before changing election law. I am. .. “When the election results came out in 2016, the rest of the country woke up in Mississippi, and we woke up on a normal day,” Bennett said. “And for us, the fight continues, whether or not these bills are passed, because we’re in another war.” Republicans set voting restrictions through the state legislature. We continue to work on our strategy. Under the Obama administration, the Democratic Party “concentrated our resources on the president, the Senate, and the House of Representatives,” Holder said. “We consider ourselves to be the National Federalist Party, even if we do not necessarily understand the direct relationship between federal power and the composition of state-level legislatures and governors. “The Secretary of State, the State Supreme Court race-you know, there was just no focus,” he added. Lambright-Haynes paused when said what Holder said. “It’s really, really sad,” she said. “You can’t see them here.” This article was originally published in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company