As polls opened up on Tuesday morning, voting advocates were likely both excited and fearful for what the 2018 Midterm elections could bring. But from Customs and Border Protection agents being scheduled to conduct a crowd control exercise in Texas to reports of some polling places not having nearly enough voting machines, one near certainty was that some form of voter suppression would rear its ugly head as voting got underway for the long-awaited political contests.
Georgia, Florida and North Carolina seemed to be Ground Zero for voter suppression efforts, but every state was being exposed to these tactics that can many times dissuade a legal, registered voter from even attempting to cast a ballot. Pennsylvania also seemed to have an alarmingly high number of issues reported Tuesday morning.
One key to countering the voter suppression efforts that have been mostly attributed to agents of the Republican Party is voter turnout, like this example from the president himself.
Most of the early reports from polling places across the country were centered on the long lines there. According to reports on social media, that was precisely the case in Indiana, South Carolina and Virginia.
Yet and still, the resounding overall message on Tuesday was that no matter what, folks must make an effort to go vote. The election was carrying heavy implications for the House and Senate, both of which Democrats were hoping they could flip in a referendum on Donald Trump’s presidency.
Luckily, there has been no shortage of voting rights advocates this election season, with a number of resources being made available for voters encountering problems with trying to cast ballots. To seek help, one need not look any further than the social media feeds of Kristen Clarke, the President and Executive Director of the National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. She and her organization have gone through painstaking measures to make sure that voters know what their rights are.
The Lawyers’ Committee along with other civil rights group such as the NAACP have been leading the charge against voter suppression and gerrymandering, but they can only do so much against the powers that be that have seemed hellbent on stopping the Black vote in particular.
The rest is up to voters.