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Florida Judge Lets Voter Purge Continue

Florida Judge Lets Voter Purge Continue

A federal judge has rejected the Department of Justice’s request for an order temporarily suspending Gov. Rick Scott’s (R) push to purge the voter rolls of tens of thousands of eligible voters.

Ruling from the bench Judge Robert Hinkle said federal laws are designed to block states from removing eligible voters close to an election. According to the judge, they are not designed to block voters who should never have been allowed to cast ballots in the first place.

Hinkle’s ruling comes as a surprise and disappointment given the text of the law he was asked to address states this:

A State shall complete, not later than 90 days prior to the date of a primary or general election for Federal office, any program the purpose of which is to systematically remove the names of ineligible voters from the official lists of eligible voters.

“We’re disappointed with the judge’s decision,” said Advancement Project Co-Director Penda Hair. “This threatens the voting rights of thousands of U.S. citizens. The right to vote is the fundamental pillar of our democracy and targeting a particular group of voters is simply wrong.”

The ruling defies logic, frankly. The very purpose of the law is to make sure the state does not wrongly flag an eligible voter as someone who cannot vote right before an election and without enough time to fix the error. That is exactly what is happening in Florida and what the law was designed to prevent.

“Florida is imposing a two-tiered system of voting, one for citizens who were born here and one for those who have been naturalized, with thousands of U.S.-born citizens being unfairly caught up in this anti-democratic purge,” said Advancement Project Co-Director Judith Browne-Dianis. “Voting illegally already carries with it a threat of substantial fines, jail sentences, and—in the case of non-citizens—deportation. What Florida is actually doing is trying to disenfranchise American citizens for partisan gain. It is against the basic values of fairness and American democracy, which is why we have filed suit to stop it.”

Unless the order is appealed and reversed Florida may continue the purge and systematically disenfranchise potentially tens of thousands of its citizens.

Pay close attention, folks. This is what life looks like under a Koch-bought state.

Related Stories:

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Photo from kristin_a via flickr.

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12:57PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012


3:06PM PDT on Jul 2, 2012

Rick Scott wants the Republicans to win and he thinks purging the voter list will weed out those who would vote Democrat. I have no idea who voted for Scott, but they should be ashamed of themselves. He's proven from day one that he's unfit to govern. He should be purged from Tallahassee.

7:03PM PDT on Jun 30, 2012

No Ted its only "activist when the conservatives "don't" like it.

7:03PM PDT on Jun 30, 2012

Is he what they call an 'activist judge?'

7:02PM PDT on Jun 30, 2012

Is he what they call an 'activist judge?'

2:09AM PDT on Jun 29, 2012

Which people over 18 are not allowed to vote in America? Isn't it like England or all european countries where everyone over 18 can vote? Even if you are a murderer, and it is illegal to stop someone from voting.
In America I heard the phrase "no taxation without representation". I take this to mean, if you are eligible to pay tax then you are eligible to vote. But if they stop you from voting, then you shouldn't have to pay tax, because you are not represented via your Vote.
You lot live in a police state, where the government ultimately has the power, my sympathy goes out to you and I hope one day you might join the rest of the world...but not in a military way.

10:04PM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

We all have the Right to Vote and nobdy should tell them Otherwise!
Let them Vote!!
Quit Purging!! This Is Outrageous!! What are you AFRAID OF???

9:06PM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

unbelievable thanks

9:06PM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

unbelievable thanks

7:48PM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

Rudy B.-Here, read up on the subject.

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