Tags: Scott | Florida | voter | purge

Florida to Continue Voter Purge in Defiance of DOJ

Saturday, 02 Jun 2012 03:27 PM

 

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Florida, a key U.S. electoral battleground where the 2000 presidential election was decided by a few hundred ballots, will defy the U.S. Justice Department's warning to stop its effort to purge ineligible voters, a state spokesman said on Saturday.

The warning issued this week by the head of the Justice Department's voting section said the move to purge voters appeared to violate the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which protects minorities. It demanded a response by Wednesday.

But a spokesman for Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner said the state must ensure only eligible voters cast ballots, and intends to go forward with the campaign.

"We have a year-round obligation to ensure the integrity of Florida's elections. We will be responding to (the Justice Department's) concerns next week," Chris Cate said in an email message.

Polls show Florida will be closely contested between Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and the outcome could swing the Nov. 6 election.

A mere 537 Florida votes decided the 2000 election in favor of Republican George W. Bush over Democrat Al Gore, amid charges from both sides that some people were unable to vote, some votes were uncounted, or were counted incorrectly.

The U.S. Supreme Court ultimately decided the contest in a ruling that halted the recount process.

Supporters of Florida's voter scrub, conducted by the administration of Republican Governor Rick Scott, say it is aimed at clearing voter registration rolls of non-citizens. But critics call it part of longstanding Republican efforts to deter minorities and the poor, who tend to vote Democratic, from casting ballots.

In its letter to Detzner on Thursday, the Justice Department also said the effort seemed to violate the 1993 National Voter Registration Act and its rules for maintaining "accurate and current" voter registration lists "in a uniform and non-discriminatory manner."

The purge effort, begun in April, compares lists of registered voters with driver's license records that contain information on citizenship. Critics contend the information can be out of date as many people become citizens after they get their driver's licenses or state IDs.

So far the state has identified about 2,700 voters as suspicious and sent them letters demanding they produce proof of citizenship to avoid being stricken from the voter rolls.

According to the Miami Herald, Florida's current list of potential non-citizen voters includes many people who are lawful citizens. One voter singled out as suspicious turned out to be a Brooklyn-born World War Two hero with a Bronze Star from the Battle of the Bulge.

About 58 percent on the list were Hispanics - Florida's largest ethnic immigrant population. Whites and Republicans were least likely to face being purged from the rolls, the newspaper said.

Civil rights groups say Florida has a long history of voter roll tampering and manipulation. Most recently, in 2000 and 2004, it tried purging convicted felons from the rolls using what were found to be inaccurate lists that kept ballots out of the hands of black voters — who tend to vote Democratic.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Sperm Can Carry Ebola for 82 Days: WHO

Friday, 28 Nov 2014 12:40 PM

Sperm can carry the Ebola virus for at least 82 days, the World Health Organization said Friday, urging men recovering f . . .

Putin Says Russia Doing Fine in Face of Tumbling Crude Prices

Friday, 28 Nov 2014 12:32 PM

President Vladimir Putin said Russia will cope with the rout in crude oil after benchmark prices plunged to a four-year  . . .

Poll: Majority of Americans Say Things Going Well in U.S.

Friday, 28 Nov 2014 12:28 PM

A majority of Americans say they believe things are going well in the United States, a new poll has found. . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved