Monday, November 03, 2008

Steve Benan:
That there are Americans who are told they have to wait in lines up to 10 hours is a genuine national disgrace, but what about those who want to cast a ballot, but simply don't have the luxury of taking three or five or seven or 10 hours to stand in line? For some, their employers won't tolerate that kind of break. For others, who get paid by the hour, it's simply too expensive to give up that much time. For others still, it's just not a physical option.

It is, as Ezra [Klein] noted, "disenfranchisement in action. A longer line does not simply mean more people are voting. It means more people are not voting, as they could not afford the time tax."

Voting problems in this country have reached the point at which they cannot be ignored. Voter-suppression tactics, electronic voting machines, and disjointed paper ballots are already areas of serious concern, but these ridiculously long lines should embarrass officials into action. It's simply untenable that our democracy tries to function this way.

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