Nebraskans voice opposition to latest voter restriction scheme

Decline To Sign Nebraska, a statewide coalition of voting rights supporters including Civic Nebraska, encourages Nebraskans to protect all citizens' rights, abilities, and opportunities to vote.

On Tuesday, Sept. 14, Nebraskans gathered at the Nebraska State Capitol to proudly and loudly state their opposition to a costly, complicated voter restriction scheme that would have untold consequences on every eligible Nebraska voter.
Preston Love Jr. of Black Votes Matter, Brad Christian-Sallis and Heather Engdahl of Civic Nebraska, Mary Lee Moulton of the League of Women Voters of Nebraska; Sam Petto of ACLU of Nebraska; and Angela Montalvo of the Nebraska Poor People’s Campaign explained why the current proposal – launched in July by politicians seeking to make Nebraska one of the strictest in the nation in ID requirements in order to vote – is a reckless measure that will not improve our elections but will most certainly disenfranchise many Nebraska voters.
 “Voter fraud is a fairy tale,” Love said during the event, which brought dozens of supporters and the news media to the Capitol’s north steps. The longtime advocate for Omaha’s Black community and veteran of the Civil Rights movement called the current petition efforts to restrict voting “deja vu … it stands shoulder-to-shoulder with poll taxes and literacy tests and so many other restrictions – shoulder to shoulder going back to Jim Crow and going back to the attempts (to weaken) the Voting Rights Act.”
Moulton, of the League of Women Voters, said the petition’s language creates too many questions for any reasonable Nebraskan to support them.
“The amendment is so vague we do not know how it would affect overseas voting military and their families. Or vote by mail … We don’t have any idea what is going to be an acceptable ID, or whether people will have to pay for these IDs. 
“Imagine your 85-year-old grandmother who has voted for decades in this state, being turned away because she no longer has a driver’s license. DMVs across Nebraska have limited locations, limited hours – how do hard-working Nebraskans who ride the bus everyday find time to go and get an ID during working hours?”
There is a reason voter-restriction schemes have been turned back time and again in Nebraska’s nonpartisan Legislature, Moulton said: There is no evidence of voter impersonation in Nebraska.
“Even supporters of this petition acknowledge this fact,” she said.
Petto of the ACLU pointed out that the current effort in Nebraska is part of a larger effort around the nation to sow mistrust in our institutions for narrow political gain. 
“Not even a full year ago, some politicians in some of the highest elected offices in our state were trying to overturn the November election,” Petto said. “We do not need to prevent eligible Nebraskans from voting.”
Engdahl, Civic Nebraska’s get-out-the-vote coordinator, said Nebraska already requires proof of identification when voters register. Requiring extra, repetitive steps only serve to embed administrative hurdles that erode Nebraskans’ ability and opportunity to freely and fairly cast a ballot.
“Nebraska’s elections are already secure. They’re already run well,” Engdahl said. “The current system works … it is not broken.”
Christian-Sallis, Civic Nebraska’s voting rights field director, pledged that the Decline To Sign Nebraska coalition will do everything in its power to educate voters on the costs, complications, and consequences of the ill-advised measure.
“We need every single Nebraskan to decline to sign this dangerous and hurtful petition,” he said.
To watch the full video of the event on Facebook, click on the image below. To learn more about why this voter restriction petition is bad news for Nebraska voters, go to

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