State sponsored voter suppression in Indiana? | THE POLITICUS

State sponsored voter suppression in Indiana?

     I haven’t seen this highlighted in a diary here, so I wanted to throw it out there. It has been reported locally for several days that the Indiana State Police have conducted a raid, with search warrants on an independent group registering voters, mostly minorities. They are investigating widespread “voter registration fraud” that started out in one county and has now ballooned out to nine counties. But there appear to be a couple of troubling discrepancies in the official account of what’s going on there.

     Look, I don’t like voter fraud. Of any kind.  I spent the first 48 years of my life in Chicago, where the freakin’ dead have been known to cast their ballots! One time there was an iconic photo published in the newspapers on a Mayoral election night, with a worker frantically erasing votes for Daley’s opponent, and putting the “X” in the Daley box instead. But at the same time, I don’t like voter suppression either, in any form, and from what I’ve read, this may be the problem in Indiana.

     The problem is conflicting information coming from the authorities themselves. It involves an outside group, the Indiana Voter Registration Project. But there seems to be a real question as to whether this even is voter fraud. State Police say as many as 45,000 registrations are in question, and that the number of fraudulent registrations may be in the hundreds. But how are they fraudulent? To quote from the ARTICLE in the Indy Star,

The possible fraudulent information is a combination of fake names, addresses and dates of birth with real information. (Italics mine)

     See the problem here? Name, address of DOB information falsified, in the midst of real, true information. Let me ask you a question. In your life, have you never, either verbally, in writing or typing on a keyboard accidentally transposed two numbers, or accidentally misspelled your name or home address, or forgotten to fill in the phone or zip code box or transposed numbers, and had to go back to correct it? I know I have, so many times I can’t count.

     People registering voters are forbidden to make corrections, or fill in empty spaces, but they can’t discard the registrations either. They must present the registrations to the county clerks. The director of the IVRP insists that they have stringent quality control measures. If a discrepancy is noted by a worker, and the applicant is no longer there to make the corrections, the applications are manually flagged by IVRP before they are submitted to the county clerks, to highlight them. The IVRP insists that any discrepancies they saw were flagged, and I have been unable to find any information of the ISP or the county clerks either denying or confirming this. “Active investigation” you know.

     And another thing. Officials have confirmed that questionable applications won’t prevent the person from voting, they’ll simply receive “provisional ballots” that won’t be counted on election night while the updated information is being confirmed, they’ll be counted when the application is approved.

     And how about this thing that has the vague smell of con about it. Nowhere on the IVRP form does it ask, nor is it noted either the sex or ethnicity of the person filling out the application. Trump is activating the minority population to register and vote, and not for him and Pence. How come suddenly it’s this one minority outreach voter registration that is guilty of such mammoth sins. Am I the only one, or does the acronym ACORN come to mind?

     The ISP confiscated laptops and cellphones, making it difficult if not impossible for the workers to continue to register voters. But it gets worse, they tried to intimidate the workers;

He also said investigators seized personal cellphones during the search and denied staff the opportunity to contact an attorney, then told them that if an attorney were contacted, a state trooper had to be present. When an attorney did arrive, Varoga said, he was denied access to the office.

     What’s with the police state tactics all of a sudden? Last time I checked, Indiana was still a part of the U.S., and it’s citizens were entitled to legal representation and due process. Is this a taste of what we can all look forward to if the Cheeto Prophet manages to skulk his way into the White House?

     There is no confirmation as to whether or not Mike Pence is aware of this issue or not, he’s pretty busy these days, walking around behind The Orange Julius with a dustpan and broom, and wheeling a garbage can for his droppings. But the timing and circumstances do tend to give one pause to think.

     Thanks as always for reading, you are ALL the wind beneath my wings!

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