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Texas limits mail voting, adds ID requirements after surge in turnout

Texas has vacillated between occasionally prying open a smidgen of expanded access to the ballot box and then constraining it. It’s a state with a long history of voter intimidation and suppression — recorded since at least 1902, when it enacted an annual poll tax, designed to discourage Mexican-Americans, African Americans and poor whites from […]

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Ohio votes under ‘extreme’ gerrymandering that favors Republicans

Once a swing state, Ohio has turned solidly red. Extreme gerrymandering of legislative and congressional districts could keep it that way for a long time. Although Republicans control statewide offices such as governor, secretary of state and attorney general, the state is pretty evenly split between Democrats and Republicans. Because of gerrymandering, Republicans boast supermajorities […]

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In Florida, extreme gerrymandering and people arrested for voting

Days before Florida’s primary this year, a new task force, dubbed  the “election police,” arranged the arrest of 20 people, putting them in handcuffs and loading them into police cruisers.  Their crime? Voting.  In 2018, Florida residents voted overwhelmingly to end the state’s draconian lifetime ban on voting for people who have been convicted of […]

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New West Virginia restrictions follow Republican playbook in other states

Even though West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner claims that the 2020 presidential election results were “fair” in his state, he questions the results in other states and has used former President Donald Trump’s claims about voter fraud to justify changes advocates fear will suppress voter turnout.  Earlier this year, the West Virginia state […]

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In divided Virginia, move toward greater voting equity on pause

Under a Democratic-controlled legislature and former Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam, Virginia repealed its old photo ID requirements ahead of the 2020 presidential election, started registering voters automatically through the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles and opened absentee ballots to any registered voter, without requiring a specific reason or excuse.  With a legislature whose control is […]

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New York adopts a state Voting Rights Act while rejecting wider ballot access

Voting in New York is a work in progress. In the past year, the state adopted a new Voting Rights Act, but its voters shot down an opportunity to make mail-in voting broadly available.  In these midterms, advocates’ most pressing concern is the lack of education around unnecessarily complicated absentee ballot changes.  Deadlines to request […]

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Maine’s progressive stance on voting stumbles over ban on early voting

Many aspects of voting in Maine are among the most progressive in the country. It pioneered ranked-choice voting. It’s the only place besides Vermont and Washington, D.C., that guarantees voting rights for all adult citizens, regardless of criminal convictions or incarceration. It has same-day voter registration, and automatic voter registration when getting an ID or […]

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Oregon improves voting access while targeting misinformation, harassment

In the past two years, Oregon has improved multilingual access to ballot instructions, made it easier to register to vote and strengthened privacy and legal protections for election workers subject to harassment as former President Donald Trump spread false conspiracy theories about the results of the 2020 election.  Oregon has served as a decades-long model […]

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More than 15% of Black Mississippi residents permanently barred from voting

Mississippi has the highest percentage of Black residents in the country at nearly 39%. White Republicans have long had total control over state government due to an array of voter suppression policies dating back to Reconstruction, designed to keep the formerly enslaved from exercising full citizenship rights.   Mississippi has an extreme felony disenfranchisement law, with […]

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Hawaii’s all-mail voting system a barrier for unhoused, non-English speakers

Hawaii was ahead of other states in moving to a universal mail ballot system that greatly improved access to voting. Even with an improvement in voter turnout, the state’s turnout remained among the lowest in the country for the 2020 election. Lawmakers looked more deeply into the reasons. They found that language troubles and homelessness […]

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Missouri’s new election law restricts registration drives, requires photo ID

Missouri’s Republican leaders have long placed restrictions on voting that have been shown to disproportionately impact Black and Latino citizens. Since the 2020 election and former President Donald Trump’s false claims that voter fraud led to his re-election loss, they’ve doubled down, passing a strict new photo ID requirement and making it a crime to […]

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In Idaho, a flood of voting restrictions could be coming

A single Republican state senator who rejects former President Donald Trump’s false accusations of voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election has blocked a slew of proposed restrictions on voting rights in Idaho. Her retirement this fall and the state Republican Party’s sharp turn toward Trump’s right-wing conspiracy theory talking points have advocates bracing for […]