Voting-rights advocates say it could take some Cuyahoga County residents as long as 90 minutes in travel time to cast an absentee ballot at the county’s only drop box.
Attorneys for the League of Women Voters and the NAACP of Ohio this week cited the difficulties of low-income residents as part of a filing in U.S. District Court in Cleveland that seeks multiple drop boxes in each county in Ohio. They say several boxes would prevent delays by the mail system and allow residents to vote without fears caused by the pandemic.
The organizations are fighting Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose’s directive that allows just one dropbox per county, which they say limits voters’ rights and is unconstitutional.
“Allowing a county with 850,000 voters the same single drop box location as a county with 9,000 voters is a recipe for disparate treatment based on where voters live,” the attorneys for the groups said in documents.
They stressed that the directive would harm low-income residents who rely on public transportation. The U.S. Census Bureau says Cuyahoga County has 457 square miles, while Cleveland has 78 square miles.
The groups have “amply demonstrated that the burdens imposed on many Ohio voters by the directive, predominately those living in poverty, is real and substantial: drive times for many of more than 90 minutes and wait times of extraordinary lengths,” the attorneys for the organizations said.
The attorneys said some voters in Cleveland and Cincinnati are 2.5 times more likely to face that travel time to and from their respective drop boxes than voters in the state as a whole.
There is more at the link above. These people really hate people voting. They hate democracy. They want power, just for themselves. Hugs
If the vote is close, Donald Trump could easily throw the election into chaos and subvert the result. Who will stop him?
There are hundreds of quotes I could take from this article and still not do it justice. Reading it made my blood run cold. This is a well thought out article about the election and what comes next. Please give it a read. It terrifies me even more with GBG dying. Hugs
A group of Trump supporters waving campaign flags disrupted the second day of early voting in Fairfax, Va., on Saturday, chanting “four more years” as voters entered a polling location and, at one point, forming a line that voters had to walk around outside the site.
County election officials eventually were forced to open up a larger portion of the Fairfax County Government Center to allow voters to wait inside away from the Trump enthusiasts.
Election officials said that the group stayed about 100 feet from the entrance to the building and, contrary to posts on social media, were not directly blocking access to the building. But they acknowledged that some voters and polling staff members felt intimidated by what some saw as protesters.
“Citizens coming into and leaving the building did have to go by them,” Gary Scott, the general registrar of Fairfax County, said in a statement. “Those voters who were in line outside of the building were moved inside and we continued operations. Some voters, and elections staff, did feel intimidated by the crowd and we did provide escorts past the group. One of the escorts was the county executive.”
Bryan Graham, the chairman of the Fairfax County Democrats who was also at the polling center, saw it differently, writing on Twitter that “the Republicans are straight-up attempting to intimidate voters at the government center.”
In an interview, Mr. Graham said he’d “never seen or heard of anything like this happening before.”
“I was there when the county executive was there and I saw him walk multiple people through the crowd because they didn’t feel safe,” Mr. Graham said. “I don’t think it’s appropriate. We shouldn’t be doing things to make people feel unsafe.”
Steve Descano, the county attorney, did not directly address the demonstration in a statement posted to Facebook on Saturday, but said that he was “instructing my office to pursue cases of voter intimidation that may occur.”
Virginia election law states that it is illegal to “hinder or delay a qualified voter in entering or leaving a polling place,” and that it is also prohibited to perform any kind of political advocacy within 40 feet of any entrance to a polling place.
Videos of the demonstrators quickly went viral on social media, and show them gathering outside the entrance, holding up Trump campaign signs and chanting as voters walked past them.
Thugs and gangs, this is what the tRump cult is now. Laws do not matter nor does fair play. Only their power and right to power. They are a rude minority acting as if they were the only ones that matter in the country. Hugs
Like we did not know this? White supremacists are a threat to everything / everyone in the country. Hugs
While the Trump administration publicly downplays the rise of the far right, Homeland Security anticipates “physical threats” to the 2020 election.
Last week, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) whistleblower told the press that agency officials had ordered him to downplay the threat of white supremacist terrorism. But a recent DHS intelligence assessment about physical threats to the 2020 election season identifies “white supremacist extremists” as the foremost threat to the democratic process this year.
The intelligence assessment, first referenced by Yahoo News and published in full by The Nation, was produced by the DHS’ Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) division. In an interview with The Nation, a former senior DHS I&A intelligence officer corroborated the whistleblower’s claims, describing the challenges he had faced to monitoring white supremacists under the Trump administration.
“As soon as Trump came in, counterterrorism ended,” the former intelligence officer said, pointing to the Trump administration’s decision to dissolve DHS’s domestic terrorism division. Since then, DHS I&A’s focus has turned to trivial immigration matters like individuals overstaying their travel visas, he explained.
“The only immigration we should be worried about is a nexus to terrorism, not student overstays and bullshit,” the former intelligence officer said.
The assessment, dated August 17 of this year and marked for OFFICIAL USE ONLY, provides an overview of different threats to the election. Threats are said to include not just white supremacists but also individuals wary of the government’s Covid-19 restrictions, Second Amendment extremists, and confrontations between protesters and counter protesters.
The report reads: “We continue to assess lone offender white supremacist extremists and other lone offender domestic terrorist actors with personalized ideologies, including those based on grievances against a target’s perceived actual political affiliation, policies, or worldview, pose the greatest threat of lethal violence.”
“Historically, there’s a pattern of increasing political violence during elections,” said Michael German, a former FBI agent. German, who himself once worked undercover in white supremacist groups, said that one of the problems is the lack of federal data on far-right groups.
“Since the federal government doesn’t collect data on white supremacist violence, we don’t really know how much it’s increased.”
There is more at the link above. Hugs
After months of heated accusations and painstaking negotiations, the White House and the pharmaceutical industry neared agreement late last month on a plan to make good on President Trump’s longstanding promise to lower drug prices.
The drug companies would spend $150 billion to address out-of-pocket consumer costs and would even pick up the bulk of the co-payments that older Americans shoulder in Medicare’s prescription drug program.
Then the agreement collapsed. The breaking point, according to four people familiar with the discussions: Mark Meadows, Mr. Trump’s chief of staff, insisted the drug makers pay for $100 cash cards that would be mailed to seniors before November — “Trump Cards,” some in the industry called them.
Some of the drugmakers bridled at being party to what they feared would be seen as an 11th-hour political boost for Mr. Trump, the people familiar with the matter said.
“We could not agree to the administration’s plan to issue one-time savings cards right before a presidential election,” said Priscilla VanderVeer, the vice president of public affairs at PhRMA, the industry’s largest trade group. “One-time savings cards will neither provide lasting help, nor advance the fundamental reforms necessary to help seniors better afford their medicines.”
For two powerful political forces that have often been at odds over the last four years, the prospect of a bargain offered coveted public relations victories. For years, the drugmakers have long been criticized for sky-high, opaque pricing for products that are often far cheaper in other countries. With a deal, the industry would get to project public spiritedness in the midst of a pandemic, while Mr. Trump would be able to deliver an immediate, long-promised benefit to voters over 65, with whom he is faring considerably worse in polls today than he did in 2016.
Now neither side can claim bragging rights.
Mr. Meadows’s gambit illustrates the extent of the last-minute scramble by White House officials to score political victories ahead of November.
With the president’s response to the coronavirus widely criticized, the White House has grasped for other ways to impress voters. In recent days, Mr. Trump has extended a ban on offshore oil drilling off the coast of Southern states, unveiled a multibillion-dollar aid package for hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico, some of whose residents have migrated to must-win Florida, announced another $14 billion in aid to farmers and plunged into Middle East peacemaking.
Some officials in the drug industry, though, said they found it mystifying that Mr. Meadows would play what they saw as political hardball with some of the same private-sector companies that Mr. Trump is pressuring to deliver the October surprise he craves the most: a coronavirus vaccine.
“We could conceivably have vaccines being given out by numerous companies, and they’re all world-class companies, they’re fantastic companies,” Mr. Trump told reporters Wednesday, singling out Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer and Moderna as he contradicted his health care advisers and asserted a vaccine could be widely distributed next month.
There is more at the link above. tRump loves to put his name on things, his branding on the US. Plus he is desperate to have voters think he solved the Covid virus problem, saved the nation, and returned the country to 1949. All of which is just his fantasy. Hugs
More at the link above. Hugs
Trump meanwhile promises to ‘put down’ left wing protests and says US Marshals killing Portland suspect was ‘retribution’
Roger Stone, whose 40-month prison sentence for lying to Congress and witness tampering in the Russia investigation was commuted by Donald Trump, has said Trump should seize total power and jail prominent figures including Bill and Hillary Clinton and Mark Zuckerberg if he loses to Joe Biden in November.
Citing widely debunked claims of fraud around early voting, absentee balloting and voting by mail, Stone said Trump should consider invoking the Insurrection Act and arresting the Clintons, former Senate majority leader Harry Reid, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, Tim Cook of Apple and “anybody else who can be proven to be involved in illegal activity”.
Stone also said: “The ballots in Nevada on election night should be seized by federal marshals and taken from the state. They are completely corrupted. No votes should be counted from the state of Nevada if that turns out to be the provable case. Send federal marshals to the Clark county board of elections, Mr President!”
Nevada has not gone to a Republican since 2004 but is shaping up to be a crucial contest this year. Biden leads there, but polls have tightened.
Trump’s own rhetoric was not far removed from that of the man he spared prison. In Nevada on Saturday, the president continued to make unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud.
Trump and his campaign have also consistently claimed without evidence that “antifa”, or anti-fascist, activists represent a deadly threat to suburban voters that will be unleashed should Biden win.
Commenting on a Daily Beast report about left wing activist groups planning what to do “if the election ends without a clear outcome or with a Biden win that Trump refuses to recognize”, Stone told Jones the website should be shut down.
“If the Daily Beast is involved in provably seditious and illegal activities,” he said, “their entire staff can be taken into custody and their office can be shut down. They wanna play war, this is war.”
Stone also advocated “forming an election day operation using the FBI, federal marshals and Republican state officials across the country to be prepared to file legal objections [to results] and if necessary to physically stand in the way of criminal activity”.
In an interview broadcast on Saturday night, Trump told Fox News he would happily “put down” any left wing protests.
“We’ll put them down very quickly if they do that,” he told Jeannine Pirro.
“We have the right to do that. We have the power to do that if we want. Look, it’s called insurrection. We just send in and we, we do it very easy. I mean, it’s very easy. I’d rather not do that, because there’s no reason for it, but if we had to, we’d do that and put it down within minutes, within minutes.”
In his interview with Fox News, Trump discussed an incident in the city in which US Marshals shot dead a suspect in the killing of a member of a right wing group.
“There has to be retribution when you have crime like this,” Trump said.
He also said protests such as those in Portland would lead to “a backlash” from the political right, “the likes of which you haven’t seen in many, many years”.
There is more at the link above. This is serious coordinated talk from people trying to get the word out to their supporters they are OK with lawlessness and stopping the democratic process and rights of the left. We have seen these actions in other countries and always before the Republican party decried it. Now they are the cult of tRump, and winning means more than democracy. Hugs
Is this deliberate election sabotage by a government employee? How to correct the damage after they are sent out? Hugs
There is more at the link above including the statement that Jena Griswold put out. Hugs