“The Myth of Voter Fraud”
Tuesday, February 22nd, 2010 | 5:30 – 7:00 PM Jerome Greene Hall | Room 103
435 W 116th St | Columbia University | New York, NY
This event is free and open to the public.
Misleading and exaggerated allegations of rampant voter fraud, which continue to be perpetuated by some tea party activists and elected officials, are having an extremely damaging impact on the future of our democracy.

Join Demos, the Columbia Law School Chapter of the American Constitution Society, the Progressive States Network, and Rock the Vote for an event on Barnard Professor Lori Minnite’s new book: The Myth of Voter Fraud. Minnite discusses the claim that since the contested 2000 presidential election, elections are being stolen by illegal immigrants, unscrupulous voter registration activists, and vote buyers. She then shows how this story is used to persuade the public that voter fraud warrants greater concern than the structural inequities that mar electoral democracy in the US. In particular, she argues that voter fraud is a politically constructed myth intended to further complicate the voting process and reduce turnout. The book traces her search for evidence of voter fraud in contemporary US elections. It concludes that common voting irregularities, used to allege fraud, are largely the product of our fragmented electoral process, not voter malfeasance.

In addition to Minnite’s presentation, a panel of experts will examine the ways in which these false charges are negatively affecting policy decisions right now in states around the country, specifically in the areas of voter identification requirements, Same Day Registration, and other registration reform efforts.

Speakers:

Lori Minnite – Assistant Professor of Political Science, Barnard College

Tova Wang – Senior Fellow in the Democracy Program, Demos

Thomas Bates – Vice President of Civic Engagement, Rock the Vote

Brian Kavnaugh – Assemblymember, 74th District of New York State Assembly



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