An interesting look at the voting rights we actually have, and issues we as citizens should look to address in relation to those rights.
Originally posted on Data Driven Viewpoints:
In an off handed comment made after the 2012 election, President Barack Obama said we need to fix our election process. This is a welcome suggestion. Our election process is badly broken and we need to take a good look at it. We should start by asking:
What voting rights do I have in my state?
This is not a commonly asked question, but it should be. Most of us believe voting rights are guaranteed under the federal constitution. This isn’t exactly true. The Constitution contains several amendments to prevented states from disenfranchising certain categories of voters. For example, states cannot use race, religion, gender or the age of anyone 18 or older as a means to disqualify a “citizen” from voting. The actual right of suffrage, however, isn’t a federal guarantee. This is up to the states. Fixing our voting system will be a state by state effort.