Wednesday, December 08, 2004
New Report Blasts Myth of "Smooth" Election
Members of the nonpartisan Election Protection coalition have
released a preliminary report, "Shattering the Myth: An Initial Snapshot of Voter Disenfranchisement in the 2004 Elections."

"The idea that the election ran smoothly, the idea that the problems we saw in 2000 did not recur in 2004, is simply a crock," said Ralph G. Neas, President, People For the American Way Foundation. "Too many people faced too many barriers to the ballot box, from impossibly long lines to outright voter intimidation and misinformation. It's time to shatter the myth and work toward an election system that is more fair and more reliable for every American."

The report highlights widespread systemic problems, not just isolated incidents. In addition to the long lines and unreasonable waiting times that kept many people - disproportionately urban minority voters - from being able to vote, the top five problems overall were registration processing, absentee ballots, machine errors, voter intimidation and suppression, and problems with the use and counting of the new provisional ballots mandated under new federal law.

Among the most disturbing reports were the more than a thousand reports of voter suppression or intimidation at the polls, including:

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