Florida voter purge to intensify

Updated
 

We talked on Tuesday about Florida Republicans’ efforts to restricting voting in 2012, including cracking down on voter-registration drives, limiting the number of days available for early voting, and in the new push, taking away voting rights from eligible citizens while trying to purge non-citizens from the voting rolls.

It’s worth appreciating the fact that the purge isn’t dying down or being scaled back in the face of public criticism; it’s intensifying.

Chris Cate, a spokesman for the state Division of Elections, defended the state’s actions. “It’s very important we make sure ineligible voters can’t cast a ballot,” he said in an email to the Herald on Tuesday…. “I don’t have a timetable on when the next list of names will be sent to supervisors, but there will be more names.”

Cote said the state will try to rely on updated information, but as Judd Legum noted, “It’s unclear how the new procedures alluded to by Cate will solve the systemic problems with the voter purge list. There have been several individuals targeted by the list that have been citizens their entire lives. Therefore, there seems to be major problems beyond outdated citizenship information.”

What are the practical implications of this? Ari Berman reported yesterday that, based on current ratios of Floridians falsely flagged as “non-citizens,” there may be “more than 35,000 eligible voters” who could be disenfranchised.

That may sound like a miniscule figure in a state of 19 million people, but (a) unjustly taking away the voting rights of even one American is unacceptable; and (b) recent history has shown that Florida elections have been decided by far fewer than 35,000 votes.

If you missed it, we had more on this story on last night’s show. See the clip above.

Rick Scott and Florida

Florida voter purge to intensify

Updated