The issue of voter suppression not only remains critical, but will especially be so in the 2014 elections. Being mid-term elections, turnout is always lower than in presidential years under the best of circumstances. If you add to that the great difficulties that the average voter can anticipate in voting, the situation goes from bad to worse. This means that voting rights activists will have important challenges that include:

•Voter registration

•Ensuring that the voters have the proper documents

•Constructing monitoring and protection mechanism to guarantee our rights and

•Helping to bring forward compelling candidates who speak to the issues of the grassroots and, thereby, encourage greater turnout.

To this we should add one more task. Each time that you encounter an elected official who suggests that greater efforts need to be taken to stop alleged voter fraud, please ask them to provide you with documented evidence of a pattern of abuse. Please ask them to provide you with documented numbers. Please ask them to provide you with proof of convictions.

And, if they cannot provide any of this, please ask them to shut their trap.

(Bill Fletcher Jr. is a senior scholar with the Institute for Policy Studies, the immediate past president of TransAfrica Forum, and author of “They’re Bankrupting Us”—And Twenty Other Myths about Unions. Follow him on Facebook and at


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