This Week in the Fight to Vote — Sept. 14 – 20

By Chris deLaubenfels, Director of Policy and Communications, Let America Vote

New Hampshire Gov. Sununu continues assault on democracy

New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu dedicated his summer to making voting harder and less fair for Granite Staters. Last Friday, Gov. Sununu vetoed a bill that would have established no-excuse absentee voting in New Hampshire. Establishing no-excuse absentee voting is an effective measure to make elections more accessible for voters. Gov. Sununu claims he vetoed the bill because it would have eroded the state’s “tradition” of in-person voting, but the veto is simply an attempt to suppress the vote of New Hampshireans to benefit Republicans who are scared of their constituents.

Gov. Sununu already vetoed bills that would have eliminated a poll tax levied against New Hampshire college students, removed unnecessary barriers to the ballot for eligible New Hampshire voters, and established an independent redistricting commission to prevent partisan gerrymandering. 

It appears Gov. Sununu and the New Hampshire GOP will continue to work to prevent free and fair elections.

Kentucky attempting to disenfranchise 150,000 voters

On Monday, Kentucky Democrats announced that more than 150,000 Kentucky voters were wrongfully placed on an inactive voter list by the Kentucky election board. The move to the inactive list may prevent Kentuckians from exercising their right to vote. Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lunder Grimes, a Let America Vote Board of Advisors member, called the election board’s action “unlawful” and said that she is “appalled” by “the disenfranchising of voters.” Kentucky GOP Gov. Matt Bevin is currently trailing Democratic challenged Andy Beshaer in this November’s election for the governorship, so the Kentucky GOP will likely do everything in its power to make it harder for Democrats to vote Gov. Bevin and other Kentuckians out of office.

Finally funding for election security

After being a one-man roadblock on election security for over a year, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell finally agreed to provide states with an additional $250 million in election security funding. The Russians interfered in the 2016 election and are attempting to interfere again in 2020. This is an important step to work to ensure fair and free elections across the country.

This week’s must read

Dahlia Lithwick of Slate published an article exploring why the issue of voting rights is more important than any one candidate or any one issue. The piece also announced a long-term Slate project to explore voter suppression and voting rights in America, and Who Counts? We look forward to the launch of the project in the coming weeks.