So, these ten nuns walk into a polling station and… Oh, youâ€™ve heard that one?
What you didnâ€™t hear is that, besides the Sistersof the Holy Cross who lost their vote because their drivers licenses expired, 144,896 other legal voters were told to scram in this yearâ€™s primary â€”all caught attempting to vote without a license. The rejected were, disproportionately, African-American,according to data from the University of Washington.
Apparently, the idea for this racially rancid rule came to Karl Rove while he was buying his Pampers: â€œIf I try to cash a check at a grocery store, I have to show an ID. Why not for voting?â€
The answer, Karl, is that for a century, Indiana folks have voted without photo ID with not a single known case of voter identity theft. Itâ€™s true the law nabbed Shirley Preiss, a 98-year old Democrat whose driverâ€™s license expired. Drop that ballot, Shirl, and no one gets hurt.
Santiago Juarez sees some truth in Roveâ€™s remarks. We met with Santiago in Espanola, New Mexico, where he was running a registration drive among low-riders, the young Mexican-Americans who cruise the street in hopping, bopping, neon-outlined Chevys. He says, â€œThe same poverty and racism that keeps these kids from getting credit cards keeps them from getting ID.â€ A young Mexicana he escorted to the polls was turned away from her first-ever attempt to vote for failure to produce an ID to the white pollworkerâ€™s satisfaction, despite Santiagoâ€™s protest.
â€œShe said, well, something you canâ€™t print, and refused to try again. She said, â€˜They donâ€™t want me to vote, anyway.â€™â€