February 06, 2008

Voter ID and Voter Registration : The party never stops

OK, so first off we have Greg Abbott continuing to persecute minority Democrats for helping people vote.

Hebert complained to Berman's committee last week that Abbott has prosecuted Texans "who appear to have done little more than mistakenly help senior citizens by delivering already completed and sealed ballots to the post office or an elections administrative office."

Of 13 voter fraud-related indictments, virtually all are African Americans or Hispanic senior citizens, Hebert noted.

He told the committee: "What is especially troubling is that while Greg Abbott's office has prosecuted minority seniors for simply mailing ballots, he has not prosecuted anyone on the other side of the aisle for what appear to be open and shut cases of real voter fraud."

Hebert told the committee about alleged voter fraud in heavily Republican Highland Park involving the mishandling of over 100 ballots and a memo from local prosecutors calling on Abbott to investigate the 2005 complaint. He explained that the attorney general's office handed off the complaint to the Texas secretary of state "for evaluation of as potential criminal prosecution."

He called that "a stalling tactic" because it is the AG's office that evaluates criminal prosecution.

Nothing has happened, according to Hebert.(HouChron)

This came out during a recent hearing on, AGAIN, voter ID laws that we don't need. Harris County TAC Bettencourt was there. Noticeably absent was Travis County's TAC, Nelda Wells-Spears. She's busy trying to keep her elected office in the face of strong opposition from former Rep. Glen Maxey. Maxey recently released an ad regarding her offices purging of thousands of voters. She blames it on the state. Maxey calls bullshit. The Statesman doesn't really know what to make of all this...

Maxey is widely considered an expert on voter registration and has focused his campaign on that task, which is handled by the tax office. He has accused Spears of mishandling two separate issues.

One involves the possibility that hundreds or thousands of Travis County residents' registrations may have been canceled when a new statewide voter-registration database came online last year.

Spears sent letters to 8,500 county residents warning of a potential problem. She and the secretary of state's office blamed each other for the situation.

Meanwhile, Maxey sent out fliers accusing Spears of being more eager to point fingers than to solve the problem.

On Wednesday, Spears and Scott Haywood, a spokesman for the secretary of state's office, said that they had worked things out.

So there was a problem but it's been fixed? How did it become a problem in the first place? How did the SOS get pulled into what is a in fact a function of the county? The only thing that's clear is that Nelda ISN'T on top of this. While we understand that the TAC can't just register people out of thin air, if a mistake was made, why not send out letters to those who were purged along with a new registration card?

Apparently, no one thought that about. Spears thought the problem would be self evident.

Spears, quoting state law, said she is not allowed to restore those purged voters unless they re-register or the county clerk's office can produce paperwork it says it doesn't have.

She added that those voters had clues that they were not properly signed up, such as not getting a registration card in the mail.

No, ma'am. When something gets screwed up or when a mistake is made, you don't wait for someone to catch it. Unless you're either lazy, immature or stupid. These folks had no idea what was happening and your solution was to just sit back and let those who were purged catch the mistake? You never heard of being proactive when it comes to solving a problem?

It's never been more clear than now that we need a new TAC. Period.

Posted by mcblogger at February 6, 2008 03:12 PM

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