RI ACLU Issues Critique Of Ocean State Voting Practices

Aug 7, 2015

On the 50th anniversary of the country’s landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965 the American Civil Liberties Union says the Ocean State still has work to do.

Rhode Island voters in Johnston
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

The Rhode Island chapter of the ACLU says Rhode Island should do away with a voter ID law, which requires photo identification for voting. Ostensibly aimed at voter-fraud, the ACLU says it mostly keeps those without IDs away from the polls… according to the ACLU that’s disproportionately minorities, disabled and low income voters.

Rhode Island policy associate, Hillary Davis says provisional ballots, which are available are not always fool-proof.

“We have watched voters who’ve been turned away from the polls without the ability to cast an provisional ballot, and that means their votes have been disenfranchised, they have been unable to cast their vote and to have their votes out there,” said Davis.

The ACLU also points to the counting of prison inmates at the ACI.  The organization says the practice artificially inflates the voting power of some Cranston districts.

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