KEN MIDKIFF: Wave of voter suppression efforts appear to be targeting Democrats | Local columnists
Why do the states where former President Donald J. Trump won hands down have voter suppression bills and laws that make it more difficult to vote?
It is evident that many voter suppression efforts are taking place in states where Trump has lost.
Republicans have more or less announced that the goal is to make it harder for blacks and Latin Americans to vote because it is assumed that people of color generally vote Democrats. The theory is that when fewer Democrats vote, Republicans often win.
But why have the states where Trump won – including Missouri – embarked on legislation to make it harder for some people to vote?
For example, Trump won Oklahoma by more than 33%, and the Oklahoma legislature passed very restrictive election laws. Apparently the intention is to make sure Democrats stay at the bottom of the barrel.
It’s the same in Florida, where Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a voter suppression bill, even though Trump’s margin of victory was much smaller.
Trump won Missouri by just over 15%, but the Republican Missouri legislature nonetheless passed and Gov. Mike Parson signed a voter suppression bill. It would impose strict photo ID and other voting requirements.
Recently, there has been a lot of media coverage of Democratic lawmakers exiting the Texas House of Representatives in an attempt to block the passage of GOP-backed voting restrictions. They are now in Washington, DC, pushing for the passage of bills that give the federal government the power to ensure states respect basic voting rights.
Texas Republicans are not happy at all. In fact, Gov. Greg Abbott has said Democratic lawmakers will be arrested upon their return to Texas.
He also proposed various other measures, which he does not have the authority to apply since the alleged violations occurred outside of Texas.
The problem for Republicans in the South and West (and a few Midwestern states are affected) is that demographics are changing. The population from Mexico to Texas is growing, while a wave of immigrants from Cuba affects the population of Florida.
While it is true that white men and women are now the majority, this is changing rapidly in the South and in border states. Republicans apparently fear that whites will soon be a distinct majority.
This has happened before in Georgia and Arizona, the two states President Joseph Biden won, but not by much. Now, the Republican majority state legislatures in those states are trying to prevent blacks and Latinos from voting. In a few years, the tide will turn.
There is absolutely no evidence that the 2020 election was rigged in Biden’s favor. In more than 60 court cases, no evidence has ever been presented to show that voter fraud existed beyond what has always existed.
Granted, there have been a few instances of people using the names of deceased people to vote and one instance of someone being caught trying to vote twice. But in all of the cases alleging widespread electoral fraud, no evidence was presented and the cases were dismissed.
The 2020 fair and free elections are not the goal of voter suppression. Trump lost and Biden won.
Voter suppression laws date from around 2022 and beyond.