Thursday, October 26, 2006

MI Voter Protection Program

Michigan Democrats Announce 2006 Voter Protection Program

Program is in response to the Republican Party’s plan to suppress the minority vote

The Michigan Democratic Party (MDP) announced their 2006 Voter Protection Program, a program that will deploy over one thousand trained lawyers and volunteers at polling locations statewide to defend the rights of Michigan voters on Election Day. The MDP has set up a toll-free telephone help line (888) DEM-VOTE (888-336-8683) that voters can call on Election Day if they have any questions about their voting rights or if they want to find their polling location.

The MDP’s program is in response to the Michigan Republican Party’s (MRP) attempts in previous elections to suppress the minority vote by sending paid poll challengers to urban areas to harass African American and other minority voters. In 2004, the Detroit Free Press reported that Detroit voters said that Republican poll watchers were illegally asking them for photo identification and had physically assaulted voters and poll workers. The Associated Press reported that Detroit election officials complained that Republican challengers were telling voters in line whether or not they could vote. [...]

In 2004, Republicans revealed part of their Election Day strategy when then GOP State Representative John Pappageorge said that the GOP would fare poorly in this year's elections if it failed to "suppress the Detroit vote." The MDP also received reports that Michigan Attorney Mike Cox was part of Republican efforts in 2004 to intimidate minority voters by giving hands-on training to Republican challengers.


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