Quantcast
Connect with us

Here’s another way Georgia Republicans could keep black voters from voting in 2020

Published

on

The state of Georgia has become a key battleground for black voting rights.

In 2018, Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams, the nation’s first-ever major-party African-American woman nominee for governor, narrowly lost to Secretary of State Brian Kemp after thousands of black voters saw their absentee ballots thrown out, polling places consolidated, and voting machines warehoused in their precincts. These incidents led to a sharp outcry and questions of legitimacy, because Kemp was administering the same election he was running in. Nonetheless, the election was extremely close — a margin of just 50,000 votes decided the outcome in a state of over 10 million people.

ADVERTISEMENT

Now, ahead of the 2020 election, The Daily Beast has published an analysis on another racially discriminatory law that could play a substantial role in the outcome: “moral turpitude” laws.

In some Southern states, Georgia included, felonies of “moral turpitude” can disqualify you from voting. The problem is that “moral turpitude” is not defined anywhere in Georgia’s constitution or laws, meaning that just about anyone with a felony conviction can be excluded if state officials want — and this applies disproportionately to people of color.

Ex-convicts regain their rights after completing their sentences, but remain ineligible while on probation or parole, which leaves some 250,000 people, or 3 percent of the entire voting-age population, disenfranchised — five times the margin with which Kemp carried the gubernatorial election in 2018. 58 percent of these disenfranchised ex-convicts are African-American.

Georgia is not the only state where moral turpitude laws have been used to deny black voters the franchise. In Alabama, moral turpitude used to be so ill-defined that black people were denied the vote for things as minor as cashing bad checks — and such voters were disenfranchised for life, even after completing their sentences. A Supreme Court decision in 1985, triggered ironically enough when the state tried to disenfranchise a white man, forced Alabama to restrict moral turpitude to felonies only.

ADVERTISEMENT

In 2017, the state further revised its constitution to name only a specific list of felonies that constitute moral turpitude — and even then, the state carefully chose crimes that black people are disproportionately convicted for, like burglary and robbery, while leaving out crimes like public corruption and embezzlement that are more closely associated with affluent white offenders.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

2020 Election

Julián Castro says his campaign is ‘in dire need’ of funds – and he’s out if he can’t raise $800K in ten days

Published

on

Julián Castro says he will have to pull out of the Democratic presidential primary if he does not raise $800,000 in the next ten days. Castro, a former HUD Secretary, says he will be forced to stop campaigning if he does not reach his financial goals by the end of the month.

“The truth is, for our campaign, these debates have offered our only guaranteed opportunity to share my vision with the American people,” Castro said in an email to supporters, as Buzzfeed reports.

Continue Reading

2020 Election

Buttigieg took campaign hiring advice from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Published

on

Raising fresh questions and new critiques about his close ties to corporate elites amid a hotly contested Democratic primary, Bloomberg reports Monday morning that the campaign of South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg received private and direct hiring advice from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg—advice the presidential candidate apparently took.

According to Bloomberg:

Earlier this year, Zuckerberg sent multiple emails to Mike Schmuhl, Buttigieg's campaign manager, with names of individuals that he might consider hiring, campaign spokesman Chris Meagher confirmed. Priscilla Chan, Zuckerberg's wife, also sent multiple emails to Schmuhl with staff recommendations. Ultimately, two of the people recommended were hired.

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

As Zuckerberg defends false Trump ads as free expression, critics say Facebook’s assault on ‘foundations of Democracy’ must be stopped

Published

on

"To save democracy and the free press, we must eliminate Google and Facebook's control over the information commons."

Amid the ongoing debate over Facebook's policy of exempting political advertising from its "misinformation" standards, a "defiant" speech on free expression delivered Thursday by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has elevated broader concerns about how powerful tech giants are "poisoning the well of our democracy."

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image