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October 19, 2004

Here's a Shocker: Problems in Florida...

By Byron LaMasters

And it's not only from the news media, but from the experience of a friend of mine, Chris - who I first met in the summer of 2003 with the Dean campaign in Dallas:

We waited in line for around an hour and a half, and 2 of us voted. John was DISENFRANCHISED! He registered to vote in the UC Breezeway in August, and he hadn't yet received his voter registration card. I was like, it's fine, you're still on the rolls even if you don't have the card. He wasn't. One of his suitemates who "registered" at the same as John isn't on the roll either. They aren't exactly sure with whom they "registered" but signs point frighteningly to Get Out the Vote. This is frightening because Get Out the Vote registered 1500 some UM students. If Get Out the Vote fucked up in some way, this could mean massive, widespread disenfranchisement of UM students. The poll worker called the downtown office to verify that he was not on the roll. I told him we weren't leaving until he at least filled out a provisional ballot. This is when the poll watcher became involved. Now we had three people on the phone (the worker, the watcher, and the clerk) trying to figure out what the hell. The worker's people told him to call the elections office and confirm what they were saying--only fill out a provisional as a last resort. The worker and the clerk were saying that he's never been registered to vote in this county and that there was nothing they could do. BULLSHIT! I told them that he was filling out a provisional ballot before we leave. They said that it was pointless because as someone who isn't registered, "you are nothing to us." On our way out, we got the card of a lawyer who saw it happen, and passed by a Morales supporter who called her people cause he didn't vote.

Something was especially fishy about the situation at the poll. The worker was trying to shove her point down the watcher's throat by saying that he doesn't even have proof of address. This is where I jumped in.

"He can just sign the affidavit! The one where he writes his name and address and signs it! That takes the place of proof of identification!"

"That's right," she says.

"Okay then, why are you even saying it?!"

They made me show picture ID, which was unnecessary because I've voted in this county before. I could've used a credit card, a pay stub from work, or even a bank statement. But no, "photo ID please." I said to her that I didn't need it. "Yes, you do."

Also, I couldn't find the voter rights and responsibilities posted ANYWHERE! That should be posted where people can check it out. The poll watcher dropped the ball on this one.

Welcome to Florida ladies and gentlemen. This is only the beginning.

Damn, Chris, I wish you could bring us better news, but then again, what do you expect when you put a Bush in charge of the damn thing?

Posted by Byron LaMasters at October 19, 2004 03:31 PM | TrackBack


No big surprise. Big Brother Jeb has appointed the former mayor of Orlando, Rabid Republican Glenda Hood to be Secretary of State whose only orders are to see that only Bush votes are counted and lots of Kerry votes be disqualifed. And you thought Kathryn Harris was bad!

Posted by: Nate at October 19, 2004 03:59 PM

picture ID is required of all voters in Florida - I had to show mine even though I had a valid voter registration card when voting in the primary. We have enough irregularities and deceptions here but this is not one. KERRY ON!

Posted by: thomas at October 19, 2004 06:10 PM

picture ID is required of all voters in Florida - I had to show mine even though I had a valid voter registration card when voting in the primary. We have enough irregularities and deceptions here but this is not one. KERRY ON!

Posted by: thomas at October 19, 2004 06:10 PM

picture ID is required of all voters in Florida - I had to show mine even though I had a valid voter registration card when voting in the primary. We have enough irregularities and deceptions here but this is not one. KERRY ON!

Posted by: thomas at October 19, 2004 06:10 PM
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