The implications of the Supreme Court decision are unimaginably horrid, as states come up with spurious “evidence” that a voter has moved — “proven” by a failure to respond to a piece of junk mail.
The purge could be massive: A half-million in Ohio will undoubtedly lead to millions nationwide.
Normally, a Supreme Court verdict is the final word, the last rodeo.
But there is hope. On Wednesday, I spoke by phone with renowned class-action attorney Jeanne Mirer of New York. She explained that the civil rights groups lost on a matter of law: States may assume a voter has moved residence if they don’t return a postcard.
But what if the facts say otherwise?
Just the Facts, Ma’am
It’s really simple to find out if failure to return a postcard is evidence you’ve moved: ask the voter. Call them up, knock on their door: Mr. Webster, have you moved to Virginia?
If Mr. Webster and others say, “No, here I am, I haven’t moved” … well, then, the Court’s factual assumption goes poof! Because the National Voter Registration Act says that removal methods must be “reasonable.”
So, the way to challenge the Court’s decision is to prove that purge-by-postcard is unreasonable and bogus.
To get to these purged voters, we need their names. Husted has just given us the complete list of the damned. But he’s stonewalling on the details, including who received and sent back the postcard. He knows that exposing the full operation of his purge machinery will blow his case to smithereens.
So, this week, this reporter is filing a demand on Husted for details on each purged voter. And I thank Mirer’s firm for taking on this enormous task, because in all, we are filing in 25 states where mass purges are being conducted. (And her firm is working pro bono.)
Husted has so far stonewalled our polite requests for the information, but this new demand comes with a 90-day notice of a lawsuit.
And in Kansas, where these methods, postcards and Crosscheck lists were conceived, I am joined in my demand on Kris Kobach for his purge lists by the Kansas ACLU. In Illinois, the Rev. Jesse Jackson has joined in pleadings.
Strategically, we’re beginning by demanding that segment of the purge list that Kobach gave to Ohio and other states.
Through investigation, we have already obtained parts of these purge lists — including the one targeting Donald Alexander Webster Sr., a 70-year-old Black voter in Dayton, Ohio. He is listed as allegedly moving from Ohio to Virginia because there’s a Virginia voter registered as Donald Eugene Webster Jr.
Webster has not moved from Ohio. I met with him in his Dayton home. And he swears he’s never been a “Eugene” or a “Junior.” He insists, “I vote every election and every primary, every one.”
Channeling Justice Sotomayor, he told me, “I remember the Civil Rights Act, I remember all of those things. Almost all gone.” He added, with a deep sadness in his voice, “Somebody dropped the ball. Maybe it was us, our age group, that we thought we didn’t have to fight anymore.”
Well, Mr. Webster, the fight is beginning. Again.
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