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With less than 5% of world population the USA has over 2.4 million of 9.8 million world prisoners! The majority of U.S. inmates are in due to the drug war.
Most Republican leaders oppose cheap universal healthcare. 45,000 uninsured Americans die each year due to lack of health insurance.
March 9, 2001 Status Report On Probe Of Election Practices in Florida. U. S. Commission On Civil Rights (USCCR). "Voter disenfranchisement appears to be at the heart of the issue. It is not a question of a recount or even an accurate count, but more pointedly the issue is those whose exclusion from the right to vote amounted to a 'No Count.' "
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*Table of Contents. After text loads, click topics below. Click TopLink, back button, or HomeKey to return here fast.

*Introduction.  
*Report On Florida Election Practices.
*State-by-state disenfranchisement. Chart.
*Electoral systems worldwide.

*Drug War charts, and more.


 

Introduction. [TopLink]

There is another related page here:

*Bush coup d'etat by illegal disenfranchisement (no voting rights). Around 600 votes in Florida won the November 2000 U.S. presidential election. BBC, London Observer, March 9 2001 report of US Commission on Civil Rights, Congressional Black Caucus, Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund, etc. paint big picture of ILLEGAL disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of Florida voters. Especially blacks, Puerto Ricans, poor whites. By claiming falsely that they had previous felonies that prevented them from voting. Voters that normally vote mostly Democrat. Blacks voted 9 to 1 for Democrat Gore. Also, LEGAL Florida disenfranchisement of hundreds of thousands of felons via racist Republican drug laws. Laws enacted with the help of far-right NRA lobbying for mandatory-minimum felony sentencing for both violent and non-violent (such as drug possession) felony offenses.
http://corporatism.tripod.com/coup.htm and
http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/coup.htm

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March 9, 2001 Status Report On Probe Of Election Practices in Florida. U. S. Commission On Civil Rights (USCCR). [TopLink]

*Civil Rights Commission March 9, 2001 Status Report On Probe Of Election Practices in Florida. U. S. Commission On Civil Rights (USCCR). "Voter disenfranchisement appears to be at the heart of the issue. It is not a question of a recount or even an accurate count, but more pointedly the issue is those whose exclusion from the right to vote amounted to a 'No Count.' "
http://corporatism.tripod.com/civil.htm and
http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/civil.htm
http://www.usccr.gov/vote2000/flstrpt1.htm -USCCR report.
http://www.usccr.gov/ -USCCR homepage.

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STATUS REPORT ON PROBE OF ELECTION PRACTICES

IN FLORIDA DURING THE 2000 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION



U. S. COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS



-------------------------------------------



The Commission has undertaken a formal investigation into allegations by Floridians of voting irregularities arising out of the November 7, 2000 Presidential election. The Commission has held two fact-finding hearings in Florida to examine whether eligible voters faced avoidable barriers that undermined their ability to cast ballots and have their ballots counted in this closely contested election. The probe is intended to uncover, for example, who made the critical decisions regarding resource allocations for Election Day activities, why were these decisions made and what specific impact these decisions had on distinct communities.

Voter disenfranchisement appears to be at the heart of the issue. It is not a question of a recount or even an accurate count, but more pointedly the issue is those whose exclusion from the right to vote amounted to a “No Count.”

We emphasize that voting technology reforms and assurances that uniform and accurate standards for counting and recounting ballots shall be implemented are encouraging and significant. These measures standing alone, however, are insufficient to address the significant and distressing issues and barriers that prevented qualified voters from participating in the Presidential election. It is our hope that Florida officials, as well as officials in other jurisdictions, will promptly resolve these major problems, which they allowed to occur, instead of hoping with the passage of time the public will forget.

In total, over 100 witnesses testified under oath before the Commission, including approximately 65 scheduled witnesses who were selected for the two hearings due to their knowledge of and/or experience with the issues under investigation. The Commission heard testimony from top elected and appointed state officials, including the Governor, the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, the Director of the Florida Division of Elections and other Florida state and county officials. A representative of Database Technologies, Inc. [Choicepoint], a firm involved in the controversial, state-sponsored removal of felons from the voter registration rolls also testified.

We also heard the sworn testimony of registered voters and experts on election reform issues, election laws and procedures and voting rights. Also, the Chair and Executive Director of the Select Task Force on Election Reforms established by Governor Jeb Bush testified before the Commission. Testimony was also received from the supervisors of elections for several counties, county commission officials, law enforcement personnel, and a states attorney. In addition to the scheduled witnesses, the Commission extended an opportunity for concerned persons, including Members of Congress and members of the Florida State Legislature, to submit testimony under oath that was germane to the issues under investigation. Significantly, the Commission subpoenaed scores of relevant documents to assist with this investigation.

The evidence points to an array of problems, including those in the following categories:

· Key officials anticipated before Election Day, that there would be an increase in levels of voter turnout based upon new voter registration figures, but did not ensure that the precincts in all communities received adequate resources to meet their needs;

· At least one unauthorized law enforcement checkpoint was set up on Election Day resulting in complaints that were investigated by the Florida Highway Patrol and the Florida Attorney General;

· Non-felons were removed from voter registration rolls based upon unreliable information collected in connection with sweeping, state sponsored felony purge policies;

· Many African Americans did not cast ballots because they were assigned to polling sites that did not have adequate resources to confirm voting eligibility status;

· College students and others submitted voter registration applications on a timely basis to persons and agencies responsible for transmitting the applications to the proper officials, but in many instances these applications were not processed in a timely or proper manner under the National Voter Registration Act (“motor-voter law”);

· Many Jewish and elderly voters received defective and complicated ballots that may have produced “overvotes” and “undervotes;”

· Some polling places were closed early and some polling places were moved without notice;

· Old and defective election equipment was found in poor precincts;

· Many Haitian Americans and Puerto Rican voters were not provided language assistance when required and requested;

· Persons with disabilities faced accessibility difficulties at certain polling sites;

· Too few poll workers were adequately trained and too few funds were committed to voter education activities;



The Commission’s probe proceeds under the statutory duty and authority of the Commission to investigate allegations in writing under oath or affirmation relating to deprivations … of the right of citizens of the United States to vote or have votes counted” (PL 103-419). This investigation is also conducted pursuant to our statute which requires the Commission to investigate allegations that “citizens of the United States are being deprived of their right to vote and have that vote counted by reason of their color, race, religion, sex, age, handicap, or national origin….”

In our investigation, we use as our standard the requirements of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act for determining whether disparate impact or disparate treatment amounting to disenfranchisement has occurred. We understand clearly that violations of the Voting Rights Act do not require proof of deliberate or intentional discrimination against citizens, if differential results, disenfranchising those who the statute was designed to protect are the result. Practices can be illegal when they have the effect of restricting opportunities for people of color, language minorities, persons with disabilities, and the elderly to participate fully in the political process and to elect candidates of their choice.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended, was aimed at subtle, as well as obvious, state regulations and practices that had the effect of denying citizens their right to vote because of their race. Perhaps the most invidious barriers to the right to vote were the seemingly neutral restrictions developed by states that had debilitating and devastating results on black voter registration.

Congress has enacted additional measures to further protect the voting rights of persons of color, immigrants, the elderly, and those with disabilities from invidious discrimination. For example, an amendment to the Voting Rights Act in 1975 permanently restricted the use of tests and devices for voter registration nationwide. The 1975 amendments also include rights for language minorities, mandating bilingual ballots and oral assistance with voting. In 1983, the Voting Rights Act was amended to clarify that the proof of discriminatory intent is not required under Section 2 claims, thus making disparate impact claims valid. Congress also enacted the National Voter Registration Act after finding that “discriminatory and unfair registration laws and procedures can have a direct and damaging effect on voter participation in elections for Federal office and disproportionately harm voter participation by various groups, including racial minorities.” Further, several laws have been enacted pertaining to the accessibility of the election process to persons with disabilities

[These laws are described in an appendix to this statement].

We are deeply troubled by our preliminary review which points to differences in resource allocations, including voting technology, and in voting procedures that may have operated so that protected groups may have had less of an opportunity to have their votes counted. We will conduct complete disparate impact and treatment analyses before the report is completed, and our final conclusions will take into account the results of these analyses.

However, it appears at this phase of the investigation that the evidence may ultimately support findings of prohibited discrimination. Two particular sources of fruitful inquiry are the questionable uses of Choicepoint data and resource allocation issues. We are attempting to document whether and, if so, how long state, county and local officials knew that certain differences in resources and procedures might impact more harshly African Americans and members of other protected groups.

The staff is continuing their analysis of the voluminous testimonial and documentary evidence compiled during this investigation. Ultimately, the Commission will pinpoint whether each of the problems identified resulted from deliberate, or harmful, yet not deliberate, discrimination, or were caused by neither.

We emphasize that the implementation of voting technology reforms and uniform and accurate standards for counting and recounting ballots would be encouraging and significant. These measures standing alone, however, will not address the significant and distressing issues and barriers that prevented qualified voters from participating in the Presidential election.

In the final analysis, new recounts of old ballots are an academic exercise. Voting is the language of our democracy and regrettably, when it mattered most, real people lost real opportunities to speak truth to power in the ballot box. This must never occur again. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once stated: Social justice shall not roll in on wheels of inevitability.

It is our hope that Florida officials, as well as officials in other jurisdictions- where barriers existed, will promptly resolve these major problems that occurred on their watch.

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APPENDIX

The most important sections of the Voting Rights Act are Section 2 and Section 5.

Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act provides:

No voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard practice, or procedure shall be imposed or applied by any State or political subdivision to deny or abridge the right of any citizen of the United States to vote on account of race or color.

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act outlines the federal role in election oversight by requiring federal approval of state changes in voting procedures in areas with a history of discrimination against persons of color. Section 5 is designed to prevent new forms of discrimination from taking effect that will diminish voting opportunities or rights for people of color. It also permits the Federal Government to send examiners to covered jurisdictions to ensure that registered voters are allowed to vote and that all votes are properly counted.

The Voting Rights Act has been amended since its passage to broaden its coverage and to strengthen its effectiveness. In 1975, an amendment permanently restricted the use of tests and devices for voter registration nationwide. The 1975 amendments also include rights for language minorities, mandating bilingual ballots and oral assistance with voting. In 1983 the Voting Rights Act was amended to clarify that the proof of discriminatory intent is not required under Section 2 claims, thus making disparate impact claims valid.

Also, in an effort to further protect the voting rights of all citizens, particularly members of protected groups, including persons of color, immigrants, the elderly, and those with disabilities, Congress enacted the National Voter Registration Act:

§ to establish procedures that will increase the number of eligible citizens who register to vote in elections for Federal office;

§ to make it possible for Federal, State and local government to implement this Act in a manner that enhances the participation of eligible citizens as voters in elections for Federal office;

§ to protect the integrity of the electoral process; and

§ to ensure that accurate and current voter registration rolls are maintained.

Lastly, several laws have been enacted pertaining to the accessibility of the election process to persons with disabilities:

· Section 208 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 provides that a person of his or her choice, with the exception of his or her employer or union agent, may assist any voter who requires assistance due to blindness, disability, or illiteracy

· Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 requires recipients of federal funds to make their programs accessible to persons with disabilities, including state and local governments that receive funding.

· The Voter Accessibility Act for Elderly and Handicapped Persons of 1984 expressly provides for the improvement of access to registration facilities and polling places. The law requires that state election divisions assure that all polling places are accessible to the elderly and persons with disabilities or that arrangements are made for such voters to vote in accessible locations or permanent registration facilities unless the state allows for registration by mail. Finally, the law requires that states provide registration and voting aids, such as large print instructions and telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD’s).

· Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibits discrimination by state or local entities in any services, programs, or activities, including the election process, for which state and local offices are required to ensure accessibility.

The National Voter Registration Act of 1993, except in a handful of exempted states, requires that individuals be given the opportunity to register by mail or when applying for a driver’s license or public services. This specifically includes state-funded programs that provide services to individuals with disabilities.

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Page #flstrpt1 March 9, 2001

--- end of report from U. S. Commission On Civil Rights website ----

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State-by-state disenfranchisement. CHART. [TopLink]

[TopLink]

"In 1998, a study by Human Rights Watch and the 
Sentencing Project
 found that 13 percent of African 
American men
and nearly four million Americans had 
lost the right to vote due to felony convictions."


State-by-state disenfranchisement 
by category.

Adapted from chart in 1998 study. ["ExFelons" used
in chart instead of "Ex-Felons" in order to avoid
word-wrap problems (from using -dashes- in chart
rows) when chart is placed into some message
boards and list archives.]


_____________________________________________
State_by_state_disenfranchisement_by_category
_____________________________________________
State_____Prison_Probation_Parole__Exfelons__
_____________________________________________
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Alabama________X_______X_______X_______X_____
Alaska_________X_______X_______X_____________
Arizona________X_______X_______X_______X_____
__________________________________2nd_felony_
Arkansas_______X_______X_______X_____________
California_____X_______________X_____________
Colorado_______X_______________X_____________
Connecticut____X_______X_______X_____________
Delaware_______X_______X_______X_______X_____
District_of__________________________________
__Columbia_____X_____________________________
Florida________X_______X_______X_______X_____
Georgia________X_______X_______X_____________
Hawaii_________X_____________________________
Idaho__________X_____________________________
_____________________________________________
State_____Prison_Probation_Parole__Exfelons__
_____________________________________________
Illinois_______X_____________________________
Indiana________X_____________________________
Iowa___________X_______X_______X_______X_____
Kansas_________X_____________________________
Kentucky_______X_______X_______X_______X_____
Louisiana______X_____________________________
Maine________________________________________
Maryland_______X_______X_______X_______X_____
__________________________________2nd_felony_
Massachusetts________________________________
Michigan_______X_____________________________
Minnesota______X_______X_______X_____________
Mississippi____X_______X_______X_______X_____
Missouri_______X_______X_______X_____________
Montana________X_____________________________
_____________________________________________
State_____Prison_Probation_Parole__Exfelons__
_____________________________________________
Nebraska_______X_______X_______X_____________
Nevada_________X_______X_______X_______X_____
New_Hampshire__X_____________________________
New_Jersey_____X_______X_______X_____________
New_Mexico_____X_______X_______X_______X_____
New_York_______X_______________X_____________
North_Carolina_X_______X_______X_____________
North_Dakota___X_____________________________
Ohio___________X_____________________________
Oklahoma_______X_______X_______X_____________
Oregon_________X_____________________________
Pennsylvania___X_____________________________
Rhode_Island___X_______X_______X_____________
South_Carolina_X_______X_______X_____________
South_Dakota___X_____________________________
_____________________________________________
State_____Prison_Probation_Parole__Exfelons__
_____________________________________________
Tennessee______X_______X_______X_______X_____
____________________________________pre1986__
Texas__________X_______X_______X_______X_____
___________________________________2_years___
Utah_________________________________________
Vermont______________________________________
Virginia_______X_______X_______X_______X_____
Washington_____X_______X_______X_______X_____
____________________________________pre1984__
West_Virginia__X_______X_______X_____________
Wisconsin______X_______X_______X_____________
_____________________________________________
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
State_____Prison_Probation_Parole__Exfelons__
_____________________________________________
The_Courier_New_font_lines_up_the_columns.___
http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/charts5.htm mirror page.
http://corporatism.tripod.com/charts5.htm mirror page.
http://www.hrw.org/reports98/vote/usvot98o.htm#FELONY and
http://www.drcnet.org/wol/065.html#novote and
http://www.drcnet.org/wol/123.html#disenfranchisement and
http://www.cannabisnews.com/news/thread7539.shtml

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Electoral systems worldwide, and drug reform. [TopLink]

For much info and many links go to:
http://corporatism.tripod.com/voting.htm and
http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/voting.htm

*Greens and the Drug War. Worldwide. LINKS. Green Party candidates, positions, platforms, etc.. Concerning the Drug War, cannabis, marijuana, harm reduction, etc.. Ralph Nader info, links.
http://corporatism.tripod.com/greens.htm and
http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/greens.htm ___
*9-2000. MAP/DrugNews SEARCH SHORTCUT for many press articles about RALPH NADER's September 8, 2000 press conference in Santa Fe, New Mexico where he called for legalizing cannabis/marijuana, and for harm reduction drug reform. Ralph Nader "called for the legalization of marijuana as part of an overhaul of the nation's 'self-defeating and antiquated drug laws.' ... Legalizing marijuana, Nader said, would allow the government to regulate and potentially tax its use like tobacco products." -Albuquerque Journal, September 8, 2000.
http://www.mapinc.org/find?BK=nader+johnson+santa&YY1=1997


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Drug War charts, and more. [TopLink]