Saturday, November 01, 2008

Vote early

People should not forget the Jim Crow laws that prevented African Americans from voting until the 1960s. I really think many folks in this election process are laid back and simply not remembering the recent difficulty that some voters with the punch-card design and ballots done improperly in the 2000 elections in n Florida. Ohio had similar issues in 2004,when African American voters said they were disenfranchised when too few machines in their precincts led to long lines.

Giannina Miranda, executive assistant for the Department of Elections, said some people who think they are registered are not, for various reasons, including a move outside the county or registration paperwork not getting to the department. "It's difficult to say how many times it happens," she said. "But we don't consider it purged."

Amos Brown, president of the San Francisco chapter of the NAACP and Third Baptist Church pastor, is one of several African American pastors who will ask his congregation to vote Sunday after church. Vans will gather in Bayview-Hunters Point and the Western Addition to take parishioners from several churches to vote and then hold a rally around 2 p.m. on the steps of City Hall.

These are some of the recent events that have happened in my area. According to USA TODAY, "

What used to be a 72-hour get-out-the-vote effort has become "a 720-hour program," says Rich Beeson, the Republican National Committee's political director.

Each side says it's ready. "We go through massive efforts to make sure our supporters know all the ways that they can vote," says Jon Carson, Obama's national field director.

The boom in early voting is fed by election officials' desire to expand turnout without overwhelming polls. "The operative word is options," says Pedro Cort├ęs, president of the National Association of Secretaries of State."

So don't make any excuses, get out there an make your voice heard.

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