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People tend to forget that this election isn’t just about the presidency; it’s about Congressional elections, as well as state and local elections. And on that level, may red states are working overtime to ensure that their states remain staunchly conservative at any cost, even if it means re-instituting literacy tests for voters.
The Tennessean reported on Thursday how one Tennessee precinct plans to challenge voting rights based on how well a potential voter speaks English:
A Davidson County election training session held earlier this month included a segment on how poll workers could challenge the right to vote of those they believe may not be U.S. citizens and reminded them that citizenship requires the ability to read, write and speak basic English.
Although the instruction gives exclusions to immigrants over 50, the tactic, which is one of the state’s Challenge the Right to Vote procedures, is worrisome to voting rights advocates.
Davidson County Election Commissioner Eddie Bryan, a Democrat, said he believes the training was designed to block immigrant voters.
“My opinion is that they’re trying to eliminate folks from voting, which I think is wrong,” said Bryan. “We ought to try to encourage folks to vote rather than keep them from voting.”
In a recent interview with the Des Moines Register, President Obama said that if he wins, it’ll be because Republicans alienated the Latino vote. But alienating the Latino vote isn’t a problem if you can just suppress their votes on election day. Republicans may be one step ahead of Democrats on this one.