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Wednesday, Feb 22nd

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You are here News Domestic (USA) Voter Suppression is Already an Issue as Americans Set Record for Early Voting

Voter Suppression is Already an Issue as Americans Set Record for Early Voting

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Record numbers of Americans voting early spotlight how enthusiastic they are about democracy. Voter energy is in stark contrast to today's backdrop of efforts by partisan operatives to discourage the turnout of new voters, according to Michael Slater, executive director of Project Vote, a national voting rights organization. Slater cites recent instances of intimidation, deception, and other dirty tricks that have occurred in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and New Mexico. With just five days before the election, Slater is available to all media to provide information and analysis on recent trends in registration, voting, and partisan mischief.

"We are learning of private investigators threatening Latino voters in New Mexico, deceptive flyers sent to students in Virginia, and politically-motivated police investigations of new voters in Ohio," Slater said. "These activities are just the latest tactics in what has been a decade-long partisan strategy to limit registration and voting."

Project Vote, which works to make America's electorate better reflect its population, has played an instrumental role in the courts and state legislatures to ensure that all eligible American can register, vote, and have their votes counted. This year alone, Project Vote has helped 1.3 million Americans apply to become registered voters and estimates that 450,000 of them are first-time registrants.

Slater and Project Vote are encouraging voters to be patient, bring ID, and not leave polling places without casting their ballots. "The standard of one person, one vote means that Election Day is the one day when all Americans have an equal say in the future of our country," Slater said. "Voters should not be deterred from voting by occasional longs lines or confusion. They should be prepared to show ID, even if it isn't required."

Slater cautions that, "Provisional ballots should only be used as a last resort." He added, "If anyone is told they cannot vote, it is imperative that they stand their ground and demand the opportunity to cast a ballot."

On Election Day, Project Vote will be dispatching election lawyers to cities where there has been a history of election problems: Albuquerque, Cleveland, Columbus, Kansas City, Gary, Orlando and Miami. Project Vote will be on hand in all seven of these "hot spots" to make sure that the election is carried out with the integrity and lives up to America's highest standard of democracy. Project Vote recommends if any voter has a problem, they should immediately call 1-866-OURVOTE (1-866-687-8683).

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