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Wed May 15, 2019, 08:18 AM

Almost 16 million voters were removed from the rolls. We should be alarmed.


Nearly two dozen Democrats are seeking votes for president. Apparently, there’s no such thing as too many.

But some officials think there are too many voters.

The number of names purged from voting rolls in recent years has surged, blocking the ballot box for millions of Americans.

That and the Justice Department’s approach to enforcing what remains of the Voting Rights Act were examined at a recent congressional hearing on “Protecting the Right to Vote: Best and Worst Practices.”

To overcome the worst practices, Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.), chairman of the House Oversight and Reform subcommittee on civil rights and civil liberties, advocates a constitutional amendment that explicitly guarantees the right to vote.

Among the worst practices are those that rob Americans of the franchise because of errors, overly aggressive attempts to clean voting lists and voting roll manipulation designed to influence elections and political power.

Consider this data from Myrna Pérez of New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice: “Between 2014 and 2016, states removed almost 16 million voters from the rolls. That’s almost 4 million more than between 2006 and 2008. And it should be obvious that that is a rate that outstrips the growth rate of total registered voters and the growth rate of total population.”

She acknowledged the responsibility of election administrators to keep voting rolls clear of the dead and geographically departed. But she said “what is especially concerning to the Brennan Center” is jurisdictions now excluded from “federal pre-clearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act had purge rates that were significantly higher” than other jurisdictions, leaving 2 million fewer citizens eligible to vote.

I'm sure it's just a coincidence that most of the purges are minorities in republican-controlled states that have been getting more competitive. They're so concerned about voter fraud.

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