New Mexico dodged a bullet in the recent election. We elected a Secretary of State who encourages voting instead of a candidate whose publicly stated goal is to suppress it.
Congratulations to us!
At a candidate debate in October, Republican nominee Nora Espinoza talked about only one issue: requiring voter ID. Her opponent, Democrat Maggie Toulouse Oliver, won by almost 100,000 votes.
Voter ID has been shown to be a code word for voter suppression – purposeful organized techniques to prevent legally qualified Americans from voting.
Some forms of voter suppression are now legal in America. Both legal and illegal forms of voter suppression were employed this year in several states. Pundits and scholars will argue whether voter suppression caused the election results or merely contributed, but there’s little doubt that many votes were never cast or never counted – as to how many, the pundits will argue about the numbers also.
The 1965 Voting Rights Act recognized that voting practices in some states actively discriminated against ethnic minorities and other target groups. The law required that voting procedures be conducted so as not to discriminate against those groups. In states with records of discriminatory practices, federal oversight was imposed.