Things That Matter

Republicans Have Made Voting In This Majority Latino Town In Kansas Nearly Impossible

Dodge City, Kan. is a town of more than 27,000 people located in the southwestern part of the state. Sixty percent of the town population is Latino and the town has always had just one voting location at the civic center in the Kansas town. However, that has all changed after the only polling station was moved outside of the city to a building that is one mile away from the nearest bus stop. The decision to move the polling location has sparked nationwide anger.

Ford County Clerk Debbie Cox is under fire for perceived voter suppression in Dodge City, Kan.

Cox is an elected county clerk who announced the change of the polling place from the civic center to a new Expo Center outside the city limits Sept. 28. The move received immediate backlash since the new polling place is one mile away from the nearest bus stop and there are no sidewalks for voters to safely walk to the polling place.

The county clerk claimed that the construction at the civic center made it inaccessible for voters. However, recent investigations have cast doubt on that reasoning.

The Rachel Maddow Show team was in Dodge City, Kan. and visited the site of the former polling place for the predominately Latino city. While the building seems accessible and safe, it is unclear why officials are not allowing people to vote in the polling place that has been around for two decades.

The state official that is responsible for overseeing Kansas’ voting process is Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Kobach first made national headlines when he was tapped by President Trump to spearhead an investigation into what Republicans claimed was illegal voting, particularly in California.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit against Ford County asking for a second polling station.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the League of United Latin American Citizens and Alejandro Rangel-Lopez. According to NBC News, Rangel-Lopez is an 18-year-old son of Mexican immigrants who plans on voting this coming election. County Clerk Cox notified Kobach’s office about the impending litigation commenting “LOL.”

For some new voters in the city, the obstacle is more reason to vote.

Rangel-Lopez, shown above, is the child of Mexican immigrants and plans to vote, according to The Rachel Maddow Show. This is just one of several examples of Republican-led states participating in alleged voter suppression. Similar stories have come out from North Dakota and Georgia.

In a major blow to voter’s rights, a federal judge dismissed the suit claiming it was too late to ask for a second voting station.

According to CNN, the judge ruled that it would cause more confusion for voters than help.

“It would be extraordinarily difficult,” the state’s Elections Director Bryan Caskey in court, told KAKE. “It would be even more so without violating several state laws.”

In a statement after the ruling, ACLU Kansas spokesperson Mark McCormick said, “We believe that Dodge City voters will get another polling place since, as one of our attorneys pointed out, one polling station for 13,000 voters in Dodge City, but three polling places for 1,300 people for the rest of Ford County simply makes no sense. Our clients will get the relief they seek – eventually. Again, this is a small part of a larger action we’ve undertaken.”

Voto Latino and Lyft have stepped up to help Dodge City voters access the polling station they are forced to use.

Lyft and Uber are independently offering free rides to people going to polling places across the country. Click here to learn more about using Lyft and Uber to get you to the polls for free.


READ: People Are Reporting Their Votes Are Being Switched. Here’s How To Properly Cast Your Vote

Share this story with all of your friends by tapping that little share button below!

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

The Election Is Just Around The Corner: Here’s Everything You Need To Know To Make Sure Your Vote Counts

Things That Matter

The Election Is Just Around The Corner: Here’s Everything You Need To Know To Make Sure Your Vote Counts

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Let’s face it, the 2020 election is shaping up to be one of the most confusing, alarming, yet consequential elections in history. With just a few weeks out from the election, we find ourselves in the midst of an ongoing pandemic, historic unemployment, calls to defund the USPS and a nasty public relations battle which threatens to dismantle safe and secure ways to vote.

States are already working to change everything to accommodate the coronavirus, from stocking up on hand sanitizer to making arrangements to use NBA arenas as polling places. But the biggest difference is mail-in voting.

The president recently said he would reject emergency funding to the USPS because, “they need that money in order to make the Post Office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots.” Despite voting by mail himself and encouraging his own campaign supporters to do so, President Trump is claiming mail-in voting will lead to fraud, which many critics claim is an attempt to suppress the vote.

Despite the fight over defunding the USPS, there’s still time to ensure the election goes smoothly. Here are the five things you can do now to make sure every vote is counted in 2020:

1st: Register To Vote

Step one is the same regardless of whether you want to vote in-person or whether you want to vote by mail. You need to get registered. You cannot vote in any way without being on the rolls.

Start by going to your local elections website. To find the correct website, you can head to Vote.org, a nonpartisan web clearinghouse for voting information. Just tell the website what state you’re in and what county you’re in, and it will send you information to get registered.

2nd: Request An Absentee Ballot Now

Credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Despite Trump’s claims, there is no evidence that voting by mail leads to fraud. In reality, voting by mail is secure and safe. It also gives voters the opportunity to review their ballot in their own time and do research on candidates.

When voting by mail in many states, you have options for returning your ballot. You can drop it in the mail or bring it to your local election office before Election Day. In some states, voters have up to two weeks to drop their ballots off at their polling location or in a secure drop box in their county.

3rd: Have A Plan To Vote In-Person If You Can’t By Mail

Credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Studies show that having a voting plan increases a person’s likelihood of voting by nearly 10 percent. Check out your state’s in-person early vote and Election Day voting hours and determine what you need to bring with you to the polls. Before you go, look up your polling place — remember, it may have changed since the last time you voted! Finally, make a plan for getting to the polls. Companies like Uber will be offering free rides to the polls on Election Day. If you can, make voting a family affair or invite a friend to meet you at the polls. Remember: you must be in line by the time the polls closed to be allowed to vote.

4th: Sign Up To Be A Poll Worker

The United States is facing a widespread shortage of poll workers this year due to COVID-19, which could result in closing polling places and long delays for voters. Especially if there are issues with the USPS, we will need more — not fewer — volunteers at the polling places making sure everyone can vote safely, fairly, and efficiently. And if saving democracy isn’t enough, most poll workers also get paid!

5th: Help A Friend

Once you’ve figured out this system, and especially if you’re in a place where lots of people historically haven’t voted by mail, think about helping a friend or offering assistance on social media. You could really be a resource to people who either don’t know what to do or are intimidated by it.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Response To GOP House Candidate’s ‘Dumb Blonde’ Joke Will Leave You Breathless

Things That Matter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Response To GOP House Candidate’s ‘Dumb Blonde’ Joke Will Leave You Breathless

BRITTANY GREESON / GETTY

Dumb blonde jokes. They’re overwrought, trite, and pretty outdated. So it’s no surprise that one that came straight from the mouth of a GOP House candidate and directed at Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez didn’t go over so well.

GOP House candidate Marjorie Taylor Greene attempted a joke at Ocasio-Cortez’s expense on Twitter Monday and it failed miserably.

Greene, whose Georgia campaign is being supported by Donald Trump, attempted to hit at AOC’s intelligence on Monday in a tweet.

“As a blonde woman, I would like to take a moment to thank Congresswoman @AOC. She has single handily [sic] put an end to all ‘dumb blonde’ jokes. Blondes everywhere appreciate your service and your sacrifice!” Greene tweeted.

In response, Ocasio-Cortez retweeted Greene, writing, “Don’t worry Mrs. Greene, I completely understand why you need to swing + miss at my intellect to make yourself feel better. You seem to have some trouble spelling your own insults correctly. Next time try ‘single-handedly,’ it’ll work better.”

She signed off her tweet writing “Good luck writing legislation!”

It’s not the first time Greene has come for AOC and failed.

Greene attempted and failed to get under AOC’s skin earlier this month.

Facebook.com

In September, the candidate shared a photo of herself holding a rifle next to images of AOC and other Democratic lawmakers Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib to her Facebook page.

She captioned the post “Squad’s worst nightmare.” It was soon removed by Facebook who cited violations of its policies.

It didn’t take long for AOC’s supporters to strike back at Green to defend the congresswoman.

“Those who are jealous and envious of others typical attack those whom they envy because they need to feel important and try to gain some attention for themselves,” one user commented in the thread. “You are where you are @AOC because of your work and dedication. Mrs Greene knows she can’t compete so she attacks.”

According to People, “Greene has a track record of embracing false stories publicized by QAnon, a conspiracy theory-fueled group which alleges there’s a group of Democratic pedophiles operating around the country.”

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com