Disenfranchisement: Not a Thing of the Past

Bill Clinton recently gave a speech at the 7th annual Campus Progress National Conference in D.C., in which he touched upon issues of voter disenfranchisement and Jim Crow discrimination. Watch the clip here.

Clinton was speaking in reference to proposed legislation in New Hampshire which would bar out-of-state college students, among others, from registering to vote in the states in which they attend school, and would require registered voters to bring state-issued ID with them to the polls.

While wanting to make elections more fair and safe (i.e. ensuring that a state’s votes are truly the opinion of the registered voters of that state) is a good ambition, I’ve got to agree with Clinton on this one. No matter the intention behind these bills, the only substantial effects they will have is to keep racial minorities and youth away from the polls. How does that help democracy?