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Thursday, November 2, 2000

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  • Vote Swapping–Can We Have Our Cake and Eat It Too?

    Voters around the country who want to cast their vote for Ralph Nader are using the internet for presidential "vote swapping" in swing states. Liberal voters who want to vote for Ralph Nader in states where the race is close between Vice President Al Gore and Governor Bush, but are afraid of tipping the balance in favor of Governor Bush, would swap their vote with a person from a state where Al Gore is a shoe in.

  • Disabled Access to Voting Polls

    It is estimated that if people with disabilities voted at the same rate as the non-disabled, between 5 and 10 million more votes would be cast in next weeks election. According to a Federal Elections Commission report, more than 20,000 polling places across the nation fail to meet the minimal requirements of accessibility for people with disabilities. People are not voting because of a lack of ramps or elevator, no accessible parking, doorways that are narrow, inaccessible voting, and ballots that aren’t in braille. It can also be an issue of poll workers deterring or rejecting people, such as those with cognitive disability, from voting. The Center for an Accessible Society believes that the lack of voter participation is directly linked to inaccessible polling places.

  • Losing the Vote: The Impact of Felony Disenfranchisement Laws in the U.S.

    America has just replaced Russia as the world leader in its rate of incarceration and incarcerates far more prisoners than any other nation — nearly 2 million. In next week’s election, 4 million Americans will be locked out of the voting booth as a result of laws that disenfranchise persons convicted of a felony. In swing states such as Florida, where more than 600,000 persons are disenfranchised, these laws could directly affect the state’s electoral outcome. The racial disparities of the criminal justice system have led to 13 percent of African-American males being excluded from the electoral process. Ironically, 50 years after the beginnings of the civil rights movement, an increasing number of African Americans are excluded from the political process each year. We no longer have laws that require literacy tests or poll taxes, but the racially disproportionate results today resemble those of a hundred years ago.

  • Salvadoran Military Trial–Authorized Torture?

    The trial of two former top officers in the Salvadoran military accused of directing the rape and murder of four nuns in 1980 is in the jury’s hands today in Florida.