Showing posts with label Voters. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Voters. Show all posts

June 30, 2017

More on Trump Demanding Voter Rolls from States {Follow Up}

A letter from Kris Kobach, the vice chairman of a White House commission looking into voter fraud and other irregularities, is drawing fire from some state election officials. The letter, sent Wednesday to all 50 states, requests that all publicly available voter roll data be sent to the White House by July 14, five days before the panel's first meeting.
The information requested includes the names, addresses, birthdates, political party (if recorded), last four digits of the voter's Social Security Number and which elections the voter has participated in since 2006, for every registered voter in the country.
Kobach, who is also Kansas' Republican secretary of state, did not say how the commission plans to use the data other than to help it "fully analyze vulnerabilities and issues related to voter registration and voting."
However, Kobach has long advocated comparing state voter rolls with other government databases to identify noncitizens or other illegitimate registrants. Voter advocacy groups say such comparisons are prone to error and worry that the effort will result in legitimate voters being purged from the rolls.
The bipartisan commission — chaired by Vice President Pence — was established by President Trump after he made his widely dismissed allegations that as many as 5 million people voted illegally last November. Its stated purpose is to recommend ways to improve the public's confidence in the integrity of elections.

But in response to Kobach's letter, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla said Thursday that he would not provide sensitive voter information to the commission.
"California's participation would only serve to legitimize the false and already debunked claims of massive voter fraud made by the President, the Vice President, and Mr. Kobach," Padilla, a Democrat, said in a statement.
Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merrill also released a statement, saying that she would share publicly available data with the commission but complaining about a "lack of openness" about what the panel is looking for. Merrill cited past legal challenges to Kobach's efforts to clean up voter rolls in Kansas, which have led to some eligible voters being removed from registration lists.
"Given Secretary Kobach's history we find it very difficult to have confidence in the work of this commission," said Merrill, a Democrat and outgoing president of the National Association of Secretaries of State.
A spokeswoman for the association said the secretaries will almost certainly discuss Kobach's controversial request at their summer conference next week in Indianapolis.
The commission, which has yet to meet, has been viewed with suspicion from the start by civil rights groups, which think it will be used to justify measures — such as strict ID requirements — that will make it more difficult to vote.
Vanita Gupta, who headed the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department during the Obama administration, said in a tweet that the letter confirms that "Pence and Kobach are laying the groundwork for voter suppression, plain & simple."
However, Kobach's letter also seeks recommendations from state officials on other issues, including how to prevent voter intimidation and disenfranchisement. It also asks how the commission can help with information technology security and vulnerabilities, a growing concern after reports of widespread Russian efforts to hack into U.S. election systems last year.
New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner, one of four Democrats on the commission, told WMUR reporter John DiStaso on Wednesday that he was impressed that Pence made it clear in a phone call with panel members earlier in the day that they would work on a bipartisan basis "with no preconceived notion and we should search for the facts."
After that call, the White House released a statement saying that Pence told commissioners: "The integrity of the vote is a foundation of our democracy; this bipartisan commission will review ways to strengthen that integrity in order to protect and preserve the principle of one person, one vote."

States Saying No To Trump Request for Voter Rolls!!

A growing list of states is refusing to comply with the White House’s unprecedented demands to hand over their voting roll data.

On Thursday, Trump’s “Commission on Election Integrity” sent out a letter to all 50 states ordering officials to turn over a whole lot of information on voters. The list of requested information includes: “full first and last names of all registrants, middle names or initials if available, addresses, dates of birth, political party (if recorded in your state), last four digits of Social Security number if available, [and] voter history from 2006 onward.”

A pretty frightening list of demands, especially given the vice chairman of the commission’s documented history of voter suppression: As Secretary of State in Kansas, Kris Kobach led an assault on voting rights so terrible, it prompted the ACLU to describe him as “the King of Voter Suppression.” As an advisor to Trump, Kobach has also signaled he supports a Muslim registry.

March 25, 2017

Linsey Graham Fights Back with Constituents at Loud Town Hall

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham defended his conservative values and voting record at a raucous town hall on Saturday, hitting back at what he described as the "double standard" among his more liberal-minded constituents. 
Speaking to an auditorium of largely Democratic voters in Columbia, the three-term Republican senator had to shout at times to be heard over the crowd. But he told voters that their boos and anger were not persuading him to change his positions. "All of you want [Donald] Trump to be denied what comes with being president — not all of you, but some of you — and you want to overturn the election," Graham shouted over jeers. 
Later, as constituents chanted "your last term," Graham fired back. 
"Good! Bring it on — we're going to have an election in 2020," he said, referring to when his seat is up. "Here's what I'm going to do: Between now and 2020, I'm not (gonna) worry about losing my job. I'm not worried about you not voting for me. You know what I am worried about? Our country." 
Since inauguration, many GOP lawmakers have faced vocal opposition from constituents during town hall meetings, and not everyone has handled the pressure well. 
Texas Rep. Joe Barton came under fire for telling constituents to "shut up" during a meeting earlier this month, while voters in California hung missing posters and held a mock vigil for Rep. Devin Nunes after he refused to agree to a meeting. 
Image: Sen. Lindsey Graham Hears From Constituents During Townhall In Columbia, South Carolina
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) (R) talks with constituents after a town hall meeting March 25, 2017 in Columbia, South Carolina. Sean Rayford / Getty Images
Pacing back and forth across the stage for nearly two hours Saturday, Graham fielded questions about Russia, the federal budget, campaign finance reform and the Second Amendment. 
 A voter from Columbia lashed out at Graham for calling for a bipartisan effort to reform the Affordable Care Act after the senator previously refused to work with the Obama administration. Others booed his assertion that Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, was the "most qualified" for the position. 
"If you don't understand that elections matter, then you don't understand America," Graham said, later adding: "I don't believe that the Constitution was written so that you get everything you want and I get nothing. That's not the way the Constitution was written." 
Graham seemed to try to end the town hall on a positive note, promising to place his state's needs over his own ideology. 
 "Do you have any idea that ... I could keep this job 200 years, just keeping [Democrats] mad and nobody else, but you know what I've chosen? I've chosen to try apparently to make a lot of people mad," Graham said, adding that Tea Party voters would be equally as upset with his voting record. 
“I'm a proud conservative who realizes that this country needs to come together and, to the extent that I can help bring us together, I will," he said.

November 28, 2016

Fed.Gov’t Will Become a Joke as Trump Makes Up His Own Untrue Facts

“There He Goes Again” (adamfoxie)

 Needs to be first! "Now I need to build the popular vote so I can win it too.
Election Over? No, they are still counting votes.”

In a tweet Sunday afternoon, President-elect Donald Trump said he won the popular vote in Nov. 8’s election if “you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.”

There has been no evidence of the widespread voter fraud that would have had to taken place to give Clinton millions of illegitimate votes.

While Trump won the presidential election overwhelmingly in the Electoral College, where the Republican collected 306 votes to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s 232, the most recent tallies indicate that he lost the popular vote to Clinton by more than 2 million votes, according to NPR.

The winner of the popular vote has lost in presidential elections four times before, but some of Clinton’s supporters have argued that her large lead and likely victory in the popular vote should force politicians to reconsider the electoral college system. Several petitions asking electors to defy the results of their particular vote and vote for Clinton have garnered millions of signatures, though the likelihood of that happening is almost non-existent according to most political observers.

In the past week, Clinton’s campaign has said it will join in recount efforts in the state of Wisconsin started by Green Party nominee Jill Stein. While Clinton’s campaign said it had uncovered no evidence of voter fraud or illegal hacking, several cybersecurity experts and political advisers have urged the Democrat to challenge the election results in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, according to a New York Magazine report.

Trump, for his part, argued on the campaign trail that the electoral system was “rigged” against him and urged his supporters to take steps to fight voter fraud, including casting multiple ballots or registering as poll watchers on Election Day, leading some to fear there would be incidents of voter intimidation. However, most reports from Election Day indicated that the election proceeded smoothly, though there were a few instances of violence, per

In two follow-up tweets, Trump also argued that he would have won the popular vote “convincingly” if the Electoral College did not exist.

November 7, 2016

Early Total Voting per State 2016

October 28, 2016

DNC Files Complaint over Trump’s Voter Intimidation

Last time it was over the RNC in NJ and the RNC lost and had to pay for consequences(below)
The Billionaire that wanted to be King

On the heels of the Democratic Coalition Against Trump Super PAC filing complaints with the Department of Justice and FBI, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) just filed a complaint alleging the RNC via Trump is violating the consent decree forbidding the GOP from organizing racially motivated voter intimidation. Should the judge considering the case find in the DNC’s favor, the consent decree set to expire next year would be extended another eight years.

The DNC complaint not only asks for an extension of the consent decree but for a court order prohibiting the precise kind of intimidation many Trump voters have promised to carry out following Trump’s orders.

As we reported previously, the consent decree emerged from the 1981 New Jersey gubernatorial election. In it, the RNC ran a national campaign to elect the Republican candidate dumping massive amounts of resources (since New Jersey holds their gubernatorial elections in off years) into the campaign. Thanks to severe voter intimidation carried out by armed Republican operatives organized by the RNC in minority-heavy voting districts, the GOP candidate won by an extremely narrow margin.

Based on that documented, organized intimidation campaign, the DNC successfully sued the RNC and obtained a consent decree forbidding them from engaging in similar conduct in the future. That decree has been modified over the years but its primary prohibition remains the same: the RNC may not (through its or others’ actions) racially target and intimidate voters in elections.

According to the current DNC complaint:

Defendant Republican National Committee (“RNC”) has violated the Final Consent Decree entered in Democratic Nat’l Comm. v. Republican Nat’l Comm., No. 81-cv-3876 (DRD) (Nov. 1, 1982) (“1982 Consent Decree”), as modified by order of this Court on July 27, 1987 (“1987 Consent Decree”), and again on December 1, 2009 (“2009 Consent Decree”) (collectively the “Consent Decree” or “Decree”), by supporting and enabling the efforts of the Republican candidate for President, Donald J. Trump, as well as his campaign and advisors, to intimidate and discourage minority voters from voting in the 2016 Presidential Election. Trump has falsely and repeatedly told his supporters that the November 8 election will be “rigged” based upon fabricated claims of voter fraud in “certain areas” or “certain sections” of key states. Unsurprisingly, those “certain areas” are exclusively communities in which large minority voting populations reside. Notwithstanding that no evidence of such fraud actually exists, Trump has encouraged his supporters to do whatever it takes to stop it—“You’ve got to get everybody to go out and watch . . . and when [I] say ‘watch,’ you know what I’m talking about, right?”—and has been actively organizing “election observers” to monitor polling stations in “certain areas.” Trump has even encouraged his “watchers” to act like vigilante law enforcement officers.

Offering supporting evidence of their motion, the DNC pointed to Trump’s circle including statements made by both Mike Pence and campaign manager Kellyanne Conway explicitly saying they are working with the RNC on ensuring the election isn’t “rigged.”

In fact, Conway specifically told reporters the Trump campaign was working to combat that so-called voter fraud by “actively working with the national committee, the official party, and campaign lawyers to monitor precincts around the country.”

And make no mistake: just because Trump (and not explicitly the RNC) is the one organizing the voter intimidation tactics doesn’t mean the RNC is off the hook. The decree explicitly states the RNC is in violation “whether acting directly or indirectly through other party committees” if racially motivated voter intimidation occurs.

That’s why the RNC is in complete and total meltdown panic mode at the moment attempting to calm their base regarding Trump’s rhetoric. They’ve had to go so far as to issue a memo asking everyone not to violate the decree lest it be extended another eight years. That memo may be too little too late now that the DNC has filed suit against them.

NOTE: If you witness any sort of voter intimidation or are prevented from voting, immediately call the Election Protection Hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE or 888-VE-Y-VOTA (en Español). You can also call The U.S. Department of Justice Voting Rights Hotline: 800-253-3931; TTY line 877-267-8971.
Tim Peacock is the Managing Editor and founder of Peacock Panache and has worked as a civil rights advocate for over twenty years. During that time he’s worn several hats including leading on campus LGBT advocacy in the University of Missouri campus system, interning with the Colorado Civil Rights Division, and volunteering at advocacy organizations. You can learn more about him at his personal website.

Cross referenced with US & News Report

October 27, 2016

Hillary Expands Following on Younger Voters

 Hillary on College graduation picture day

Hillary Clinton has expanded her lead over Republican rival Donald Trump to 28 percentage points among voters younger than 30, according to a new survey by the Harvard Institute of Politics that signals trouble ahead for Republicans with this crucial voting bloc.
The national survey, released Wednesday, found that Mrs. Clinton is backed by 49% of likely voters aged 18 to 29, compared with 21% for Mr. Trump, 14% for Libertarian Gary Johnson and 5% for Green Party candidate Jill Stein.
The poll suggests Mr. Trump could set back GOP efforts to improve its standing with millennials, a voting bloc that is about to surpass baby boomers as the largest generation of eligible voters. In Harvard’s October 2012 survey, GOP nominee Mitt Romney trailed President Barack Obama, who was a magnet for young voters, by just 19 points among those under 30, 55% to 36%.

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Hillary Clinton is eyeing traditionally Republican states as potential battlegrounds this campaign season. WSJ's Gerald F. Seib sizes up Democrats' chances in Arizona, Georgia, Texas and Missouri. Photo: AP
John Della Volpe, polling director of the Harvard Institute of Politics, said Mrs. Clinton’s growing lead—up from 22 points in a July Harvard poll—was noteworthy because Mrs. Clinton has struggled to bring along millennials. During the Democratic primary campaign, Sen. Bernie Sanders was the prohibitive favorite among the group.
“She has had a very complicated relationship with this generation for eight years,” said Mr. Della Volpe, who believes Mrs. Clinton is reaping benefits from a concerted campaign effort to court them since the summer’s Democratic convention. “She understood the importance of this vote. If not for millennials, this would be a much closer race.”
Both candidates are viewed more negatively than positively, but Mrs. Clinton’s image has improved since July, while Mr. Trump’s stayed about the same. Among likely young voters, Mrs. Clinton is viewed favorably by 48% and unfavorably by 51%. For Mr. Trump, 22% are favorable and 76% unfavorable.
The poll found Mrs. Clinton’s dominance among young voters extended to all subgroups—besides Republicans—even among young white voters who in 2012 had favored Mr. Romney by 4 points. She also led Mr. Trump among young women and voters without a college degree by wider margins than Mr. Obama led Mr. Romney in 2012. However, her lead with young Hispanics is narrower than Mr. Obama’s, and among blacks, her lead is the same as his.
While Mrs. Clinton has benefited from the strong negative feelings most young voters had about Mr. Trump, her greater risk may come from millennials who are tempted to vote for a third-party candidate or not vote at all.
“The choice was between Clinton, Johnson and the couch,” Mr. Della Volpe said. Mr. Della Volpe found in a separate analysis of Google tracking polls in September that, when Mr. Johnson stumbled on an interview question about the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo, it took a bigger toll on support among young people than other age groups.
While young voters have shown more support for third-party candidates than other generations, the Harvard poll found their interest in such candidates may not be durable: More than one-third of Mr. Johnson’s supporters said they would likely vote for another candidate on Election Day. Only 6% of Clinton supporters and 5% of Trump supporters said the same.
Republicans and Democrats seem about equally committed to voting this year, but GOP voters’ commitment has dropped significantly from 2012. Asked if they would definitely vote on Election Day or before, 59% of Democrats and 56% of Republicans said yes. In 2012, 60% of Democrats and 65% of Republicans said they definitely would vote.
Young Hispanics and independent voters are more likely to vote this year than 2012: 39% of Hispanics say they would definitely vote, up from 31% in 2012. For independents, the share of definite voters rose to 36% from 29% in 2012.
The poll found the mood of this generation grim and anxious. Asked how they felt about the future of the country, 51% said they were fearful, while just 20% said they were hopeful. More than three-quarters said they were concerned about the state of race relations in the U.S.
The KnowledgePanel survey of 2,150 18- to 29-year-olds was conducted with the Government and Academic Research team of Gfk for the Institute of Politics Oct. 7-17. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.11 percentage points.
By Janet Hook,  can be reached at
Original posting from
Wall Street Journal

October 26, 2016

Clinton’s Secret for Winning Fl: Arriving Voters from PR

Last Wednesday morning contained an unusual landmark in the endgame of the 2016 election season: the first time in months that Central Floridians could confidently buy a plantain without being hassled about their level of civic engagement.
Throughout the year, their region has been overrun with clipboard-grasping canvassers listening for the distinctively accented Spanish of native Puerto Ricans. While in most states registration drives focus on college campuses and African-American neighborhoods—the standard marketplaces where canvassers find non-registrants who skew Democratic—Florida has presented a distinct demographic opportunity. The center of the state, across several counties sprawling outward from Orlando, has been a destination for one of the most significant domestic diasporas in recent American history. The debt crisis that has been roiling Puerto Rico for the last two years has forced residents to flee the island in droves, with many settling in Florida’s Orange and Osceola counties.
“From senior citizens to 22-year-old college students, anybody who’s anybody is moving here from Puerto Rico,” Clyde Fasick, a student from the Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico working on Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign in Osceola. 
From senior citizens to 22-year-old college students, anybody who’s anybody is moving here from Puerto Rico.” Clyde Fasick, Hillary Clinton campaign organizer
Four years ago, President Barack Obama won 60 percent of Florida’s overall Hispanic vote, compared to Republican Mitt Romney’s 39 percent. This year, some national and Florida polls have pegged GOP nominee Donald Trump’s support among Latinos below 20 percent—a difference that could place this ultimate swing state securely into Clinton’s column, if her campaign can reach its turnout goals. Trump and Clinton each scheduled multiple days in Florida this week, no doubt aiming to reach the 2 million Hispanic voters who now make up roughly 16 percent of registered voters in the state. And in contrast with South Florida’s Cuban-Americans, a swing constituency both sides have long struggled over, Puerto Ricans in the state look this year to be an overwhelmingly Democratic bloc, requiring not ideological persuasion, but the arduous labor of registration and mobilization.
In a report released by WikiLeaks after Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s e-mail account was hacked, the campaign’s analytics team determined that nearly one-quarter of the work required to win Florida was registering new voters. In comparison, that number was less than 10 percent in Wisconsin, and nearly 60 percent in North Carolina. (The Clinton campaign has declined to verify the authenticity of the hacked e-mails.) Some of that work has been taken on directly by Clinton’s campaign, under the auspices of the consolidated field effort it runs with the Florida Democratic Party, but the campaign also benefits from the attention of non-profit groups that coordinate work among themselves. (As non-profits, they are forbidden from sharing their plans with Clinton’s campaign, though signaling sometimes takes place through the media.)

Despite Florida’s hallowed swing-state reputation, its well of 554,000 persuadable voters is shallow—a relatively small share of the electorate. Obama was able to keep this state blue for the past eight years in large part because Democrats have a sizable advantage when it comes to the number of supporters they can attempt to mobilize, with more than 60,000 targets than what's available to Republicans. (Four years ago, after more than 8 million ballots cast in the state, Obama won by about 73,000 votes.)

Trump may seek help from the 60 percent of persuadable voters who are over the age of 50—especially men. But this year, almost every other key demographic groups seems to be tilting in Clinton’s favor. There are nearly 30 percent more women in Florida who lean Democrat than Republican—a gap that is 10 points wider than the split among men. Clinton also has more than twice as many mobilization targets than Trump within the state’s swelling Hispanic communities. 
She may find additional support among the state’s 415,000 Republican-leaning Latinos, many of whom appear to be standing behind incumbent Republican Senator Marco Rubio as he distances himself from Trump. If Clinton can turn out the entirety of her coalition and peel off 45 percent of Latinos who’ve leaned toward the GOP in the past, she could win the Sunshine State without the help of a single persuadable voter.

Ground Forces

Last Tuesday afternoon, three Clinton canvassers stood outside Kissimmee Meat & Produce, looking to slow those entering and exiting just long enough to ask whether they were registered. The independently owned supermarket sits in Osceola County’s 410th precinct, where, according to a Clarity Campaign Labs analysis, 42 percent of the 246 voters who have registered since the 2014 elections are likely to be Puerto Rican. Not all are recent transplants from the island: some were raised in Florida and are just reaching voting age; others are retirees relocating from large Puerto Rican communities in New York, New Jersey, and Illinois.
Not long ago, Democrats worried that the new arrivals would become a key swing bloc. These voters do not come with partisan loyalties—Puerto Rico’s two parties are not split on a left-right axis as much as by their support for statehood—so even people who are enthusiastic about voting can become paralyzed when prompted to check a box attached to a party name. Clinton has been vocal about her support for Puerto Rico's right to vote on whether it should be a state—past polling suggests such a measure would pass comfortably—while Trump has signaled he is open to the possibility of statehood. “I realize some of them don’t recognize which candidate is Democratic and which is Republican,” says José Castellanos, who supervises a team of four canvassers for Mi Familia Vota. “As soon as I say a certain name, they react.”

Earlier this year, Democrats were aggressively testing messages they thought could sway new transplants to line up with Democrats, mostly by contrasting party leaders’ backing for a federal bailout of the island with Republican opposition. The communications department of Clinton’s Florida campaign has treated San Juan as a local media market, working as assiduously to place stories in El Nuevo Dia de Puerto Rico as in the Sun-Sentinel. New transplants are as likely to read news from their former home as from sources in the Orlando media market.
To help target narrowly tailored messages to these voters via digital ads and direct mail, Civis Analytics, a firm working for the pro-Clinton super-PAC Priorities USA, built a statistical model to predict the ethnicity of every Hispanic voter. Florida is among the states where citizens have been historically required to identify their race or ethnicity when registering to vote, but forms don’t distinguish Puerto Ricans from, say, Colombians or Venezuelans. “It’s very important to differentiate Cubans from non-Cubans in Florida,” says Matt Lackey, vice president for research and development. The Civis analysis found Colon and Nieves were the last names that most over-index among Puerto Rican voters, compared to Morejon and Llanes among their Cuban peers.
It turned out that it did not take much persuasion to move the new Puerto Ricans into Clinton’s column. Latino Decisions, a polling firm that supplies her campaign with research on Hispanic public opinion, found Clinton winning 74 percent of the vote to Trump’s 17 percent, with an even larger margin among the subset of those born on the island. The island-born viewed Clinton more favorably, and Trump more unfavorably, than their mainland-born peers. And within both groups, only 11 percent of voters said the debt crisis was the most important issue to them, behind even “immigration or deportations”—even though as citizens those issues are unlikely to affect Puerto Rican families directly. In Florida’s Senate race, Puerto Ricans were split between the Cuban-American Rubio and his challenger, Patrick Murphy, with the island-born leaning toward the Democrat, and mainland-born slightly preferring the Republican.
So Democratic campaigners shifted Puerto Ricans from targets for persuasion to pure mobilization opportunities. They would not need to be convinced to vote for Clinton, sure, but they did need to be registered and then mobilized to participate, in a place with a very different electoral culture.
Unlike foreign immigrants, as U.S. citizens, Puerto Ricans are all immediately eligible to vote, and many are more habituated to voting than many Americans. Puerto Rico has some of the world’s highest voter-turnout rates, which observers credit both to the fact that Election Day is an official holiday and to the block-party atmosphere that inspires. For years, Puerto Ricans voted at a higher rate than Finns; the only countries in the hemisphere with higher participation rates made voting compulsory. Even though turnout for the island’s quadrennial elections has fallen in recent years, it is still 10 points higher than for presidential contests on the mainland.
That hasn’t always translated into similar participation for Puerto Ricans on the mainland, where their turnout rates lag behind the population as a whole. (Civis Analytics projects turnout among Florida Puerto Ricans this year to be 10 points lower than among Cubans.) “When people come to vote here, it’s heavy,” says Fasick. “It’s a more festive feeling back home.” Organizers have been working to recreate some of that spirit in Central Florida, snaking the boisterous automotive caravans known as caravanas through Orlando and Kissimmee. Clinton’s campaign has started blasting music at local phone banks as volunteers make calls.
 The aggressive registration push was scheduled to climax on Tuesday, Oct. 11, the deadline to submit completed applications to county officials. But the arrival of Hurricane Matthew, which had kept Central Florida canvassers inside for two straight days, prompted a judge to extend the deadline by a day, and then by another six. While Democratic politicians and lawyers celebrated the week-long extension as a victory for voting rights, tacticians were not so enthusiastic. They had already planned for Oct. 12 to be the day they transitioned into get-out-the-vote activities, taking the volunteers who had become deft at registering citizens and training them for the doorstep and phone conversations that would turn them into voters. “It doesn’t matter if they’re registered if they don’t vote,” says Castellanos.
Story has been updated to more precisely characterize Hillary Clinton's position on Puerto Rican statehood.
This is the seventh in a series of eight Battlegrounds 2016 stories on the unique arithmetic that governs presidential elections in battleground states. Read more about how the battleground game is played.

—With assistance from Andre Tartar

October 11, 2016

Fed Judge Orders Florida to Extend Voter Registration


A federal judge in Florida late Monday ordered the state to extend the deadline for registering to vote by one day and set a hearing on whether to extended it even further. 
Under Florida law, voters had until Tuesday, October 11, to register to vote. But Judge Mark Walker said in view of the disruption caused by Hurricane Matthew, the state should extended it to Wednesday. 
Noting that that storm’s damage affected some parts of the state more than others, the judge said "it would be grossly inappropriate" to allow voters in Jacksonville to register later than those in Pensacola.

The order came in response to a lawsuit filed Sunday by Florida Democrats. They said when Gov. Rick Scott ordered evacuations as the hurricane headed for the state, he forced voters “to choose between their safety and the safety of their families on one hand, and their fundamental right to vote on the other. 

 The state Democrats had asked the judge to extend the registration deadline by a week, until October 18. He set a hearing for 10 a.m. Wednesday on that request. 
Walker said Florida law gives the governor authority to suspend or move an election date due to an unforeseen emergency. Given that, the judge said, "it is wholly irrational in this instance for Florida to refuse to extend the voter registration deadline.  "It has been suggested that the issue of extending the voter registration deadline is about politics. Poppycock," Walker wrote. 
"This case is about the right of aspiring eligible voters to register and to have their votes counted. Nothing could be more fundamental to our democracy." 
The state could try to appeal Monday's order. No immediate response was available from state officials.

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