New Elections Law Reactions

By: Mike Vasilinda Email
By: Mike Vasilinda Email

On May 20th, 1865, Union soldiers read President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation in Florida for the first time. The event is reenacted each year in Tallahassee."The Negroes are now free men."

But many African Americans believe that a 158-page elections bill signed into law Thursday will do them more harm than good.

Former Senator Al Lawson says, "I think that the Justice Department is going to weigh in on this because basically what you're doing is taking away citizens' rights to actually vote."

Despite claims to the contrary, the legislation allows county supervisors to cut early voting in half, to as few as eight, six-hour days. Secretary of State Kurt Browning says that will save small counties money.

Secretary of State, Kurt Browning says, "I do not see that as a reduction of early voting. I see that as a good, common sense approach to being able to not use this whole one-size-fits-all mentality."

"The legislation is being described as a proactive approach to fighting election fraud. But in recent years, only four cases have been prosecuted."

Still another provision would give lawmakers a second chance if they write misleading ballot information for constitutional amendments. Elections law expert Ron Meyer successfully argued against several amendments last fall.

Elections Attorney, Ron Meyer says, "What this legislation tries to do is take away from the court the right to make sure that the people understand what they're voting for."
The new law also makes it harder to chance your address on short notice.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Foxgloves on May 23, 2011 at 06:00 PM
    Have sent in a posting on 5/21 and again today 5/23 and neither is posted. If you lost them, I can resubmit a copy. The changes are a good begining, even if some don't think so. It will prevent fraudulent voting, and just because it has not been prosecuted, does not mean it is not happening.
  • by Foxgloves Location: Tlh on May 23, 2011 at 03:44 PM
    No rights are taken away froom anyone. You folks that feel you have been disenfranchised only need to call the Supervisor's office and you can get you information registered and show up during the times allowed for voting. I thought absentee ballots were originally intended for those medically disabled, away from home for valid reasons or military, not to run in and request one, and show back with it, after someone fills it out for you five minutes later. I am glad that some changes are being made. Just because only 4 cases of voter fraud was reported, does not mean that was all there was. If you recall in one of the northern states, the Black Panthers were wielding clubs to intimidate voters. Nothing was done about this, because the attorney general declined to have the Justice Dept do anything. Add in all the people who are in facilities that are mentally challenged, and check out the ballots sent to these places, only to be filled out by the staff/owners with their choices marked. How is that not fraudulent. Yet, these ballots are counted, and people are elected whose ideas and votes are made into law that the rest of the working stiffs have to pay for, voted in by those who do not have a clue as to what or who. I call the changes a good beginning, and hope more will be done. The USA runs all over the world to promote voting rights, yet we have some of the worst in the world as to fraud and corruption in our very own country. You do not need Acorn or some woman's club to fill out a form for you; you can do it yourself. If you don't have enough gumption to do it yourself, maybe you can't read and understand what you are voting for.
  • by Jim Location: Gadsden County on May 22, 2011 at 02:19 PM
    Looking for my post that was submitted 10-11 AM this date........I do have a copy if you wish me to resubmit......
  • by NOT BUBBA BUT ABBA on May 21, 2011 at 10:25 PM
    ohhh Bubba... All the worn out, old, useless buzz words like "disenfranchise" that any average person has become numb too. That is really sad that the words have been thrown around without content to the point that people roll their eyes. This is not a power grab. Come on... Do you expect every law that is passed to create jobs? Not a viable comment along with the rest of your comments. If you are sooo concerned about voting then why don't you volunteer at a polling place.
  • by Franklin Location: Tallahassee on May 21, 2011 at 05:54 PM
    Your right to vote has not been messed with in any way. When will the idiot libs wake up?
  • by Reality Check on May 21, 2011 at 02:59 PM
    Thom: No one is taking away anyone's right to vote! It is a person's civic duty to vote and it should be a priority!!! If someone cannot find the time to vote or use the excuse that it is not convenient for them on this day or on that day or on election day, then I don't know how to respond to that comment. Absentee voting and early voting were put in place to make it MORE convenient for people to vote. Your argument that simple time limitations causes someone not to vote and takes away their freedom is baseless. Are we less free because we have to wait in line to buy groceries, wait in line to purchase tickets to events at the Civic Center, wait in line to purchase gasoline, etc? You get my point and it is valid unlike yours, and I am a minority who didn't have the right to vote back in history!
  • by Bubba on May 21, 2011 at 12:20 PM
    This is nothing more than a power grab by conservatives seeking to further disenfranchise the voters of the minority party. Did the law create jobs? No, so it is yet another example of the now famous bait and switch tactics used by Ricky Bobby to gain power and then implement his rule.
  • by ga on May 21, 2011 at 11:06 AM
    I FEEL FOR ALL YOU PPLE IN FLA. YOUR GOV. IS RETARTED , AND HE IS SO DANG INSANE!! I WAS GOING TO SAY CRAZY, BUT HE IS INSANE!!!
  • by disgusted Location: Tally on May 21, 2011 at 09:34 AM
    This is not about LIBERALS , this is about Ricky using his authority. He is not interested in being the "PEOPLES Governor".
  • by Jim Location: Gadsden County on May 21, 2011 at 09:22 AM
    white Union General Edward M. McCook read the emancipation proclamation in Tallahassee on May 20, 1865.
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