Want to make sure you don’t miss the best opinion pieces, deep dives, and analysis of midterm elections coverage? Here’s your midterm elections roundup of must-read articles on voting rights from around the web:
1. High turnout for the midterm elections posed challenges for aging election infrastructure and administrative systems prone to error. In addition, complaints of potentially improper political messages at polling sites cropped up.
- High turnout and malfunctioning equipment led to long lines across the nation.
- Long lines can be a form of disenfranchisement.
- “[Instances of high voter turnout] were encouraging signs of the health of American democracy.” But long lines and other issues are problematic.
- A coalition of civil rights groups “deployed about 6,500 lawyers and monitors in 30 states to protect ballot access — more than in any previous election.” They received a higher volume of complaints of voting irregularities than any other recent midterm election. Irregularities included broken machines and long lines.
- Voting irregularities in “[f]our states — Arizona, Florida, Georgia and Texas — stood out as particularly problematic…Election experts point to declining enforcement of rights for minority voters since the Supreme Court struck down the core of the 1965 Voting Rights Act five years ago.”
2. Midterms will matter for the future of voter suppression. After midterms, if Republicans view voter suppression as having contributed to their electoral victories without costing them the approval of their supporters, they may become emboldened and seek to increase voter suppression efforts.
3. The US Postal Service’s policy is that it “will not deny a voter their right to vote by delaying a time-sensitive ballot because of insufficient postage.” However, “neither the Postal Service nor election administrators publicize the fact that your ballot will be delivered without [postage],” because neither want to foot the bill.
4. “Of the 6.1 million disenfranchised felons in the U.S., about 1.7 million live in Florida — the most of any state.” In a huge victory for voting rights, however, midterm election voters in Florida passed a measure to restore the voting rights of felons who have served their sentences.
5. Instead of assisting election administrators with their election security efforts, US Election Assistance Commission officials have been absent from security efforts and have actively discouraged secretaries of state from taking seriously threats to US elections, rejecting intelligence agencies’ findings of Russian cyber interference in US elections.