Los Angeles polling station

In the 12 years since armies of lawyers argued over hanging chads in Florida, election-related lawsuits have more than doubled. Law professor and election law expert Richard Hasen says we should expect even more bitter, partisan disputes over election law in coming years. We’ll discuss voter ID laws, claims of voter fraud and voter suppression, plus Hasen’s new book, “The Voting Wars: From Florida 2000 to the Next Election Meltdown.”

Election Law and ‘The Voting Wars’ 3 October,2012forum

Richard Hasen, chancellor's professor of law and political science at the U.C. Irvine School of Law, and author of "The Voting Wars: From Florida 2000 to the Next Election Meltdown"
Kim Alexander, president and founder of the California Voter Foundation, a non-partisan nonprofit working to improve the voting process to better serve voters

  • Rhet

    It’s appalling that 12 years later, NPR is still pushing the lie that Florida was all about “hanging chads”. It’s wasn’t. It was about 90,000 Democrats being illegally removed from the voting rolls by Jeb Bush so that his brother George W could steal Florida. This was investigated by Greg Palast years ago for the BBC, but the American mainstream media have ignored it, as if by command. They ignored the crimes of Jeb Bush in the way they ignored the collapse of WTC building 7 on 9/11, with purposeful, across the board censorship.

  • frank

    Isn’t the requirement for a government issued ID to vote equivalent to the “poll tax”, which was declared unconstitutional long ago? The government issued ID is not free and not easily available for many people.

    • MattCA12

      Not even close. Who doesn’t have an ID in this age? And why does it have to be free? Governments can charge for the services they provide. Besides, it’s only a question of priorities. A “poor” person may not have the $15 or whatever it takes to pay for a gov’t issued ID, but I can guarantee you they’ll find the $99 it takes to buy an iPhone. Democracy requires choices-including the choice about whether or not to participate in it.

  • daniel

    Is there a procrastination factor To consider here? As a procrastinator myself, don’t photo Id laws mean that those who decide to vote close to or on election day who may not have id essentially are out of luck and thus disenfranchised? procrastination is surely human nature and shouldn’t be overly penalized?

    • Get Registered

      Now, everyone has 4 years to get registered. Photo ID SHOULD be required and I AM a Democratic.

  • What are Mr. Hasen’s thoughts about the constitutionality of implementing a universal voting system such as in they have in Australia? For those ostensibly concerned about “voting fraud”, wouldn’t that essentially eliminate most of the problem? Shouldn’t every citizen vote?

  • David

    Having volunteered in Ohio for 3 months before the 2004 election, I saw firsthand how local election officials can suppress turnout in legal, subtle ways. In that election, precincts with heavy democratic registration were assigned far fewer voting machines than those with heavy republican registration. As a result, on an election day when it was pouring rain, democratic voters were left standing in the rain for hours waiting to vote while republican polling places had few lines and no delays.

  • Stanley

    Doesn’t seem that any election in which the margin of victory is less than the margin of error should be thrown out as meaningless and revoted?

  • Tamara

    Your guest is making preposterously ignorant statements about California election law. The ONLY WAY to vote with confidence that your vote will be counted in California is to vote by mail. Fraudulent voting at polling places and poll worker error and mischief is easy to commit in California and I have personally observed it. Moreover, political machines in places such as San Francisco have a remarkable ability to hold the count open in an election until they “find” the votes they need to pass an initiative: that appears to have occurred with regard to the proposed new stadium at Candlestick Park that was voted on when Willie Brown was mayor of San Francisco.

  • Guest

    Why isn’t the discussion about moving to mandatory voting ala Australia, rather than making voting more difficult through ID laws

  • John

    It seems that issue of fraudulent votes by non-citizens often not discussed. This type fraud happens often then somebody can think of. It is very easy to regiester to vote with out showing proof of citizenship. Then it is no longer detectable at the point vote, since this person is officially registered. This people bring different agenda at voting time, which often have nothing to do with what election process have been designed for.

  • Beth Grant DeRoos

    Personally I think everyone should make sure they have a certified copy of their birth certificate and even if you don’t drive get a CA state ID which is similar to a drivers license as it has your photo and address. Because you never know when you will need the ID. I will gladly help folks I know, get copies to have on hand.

    When my husband died I had to spend a hundred dollars for certified copies of his death certificate in order to get our bank account changed, pensions and other benefits due me as his widow.

    When I went to use the county library when my computer was being repaired I had to show my CA drivers license. When I went to cash a check they asked for my CA drivers license. When I went to register to vote when I moved they asked for my CA drivers license. Had to submit a certified copy of my birth certificate when I got my passport.

    And lets be honest and admit if someone has to provide a certified copy of a birth certificate to show proof they are whom they say they are in order to get the insurance a loved one left them, or change a bank account after a spouses death in order to have access to funds then this shows they can indeed get the needed documents they need in order to vote.

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