Entries in 22012 Election (2)


Stricter Voter Photo ID Laws Can Affect 2012 Election

Ethan Miller/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- For residents in seven states, casting ballots in the 2012 election could be a bit more difficult than it was during the last go around.

New laws requiring voters to show photo identification are set to take effect in Kansas, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. And Democrats, who as a party are staunchly opposed to voter ID laws, are already ramping up their efforts to combat the new laws.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY) the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said that his committee is planning a “a major voter protection initiative” to “make sure that every American that has the right to vote is able to vote.”

Israel was one of 196 House Democrats who signed a letter last week urging secretaries of state to “oppose these partisan efforts to hinder access to the ballot,” as Rep. House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer said in a statement announcing the letter.

Prior to 2011, there were only two states with strict photo ID laws, Georgia and Indiana. Over the course of the year, four states tightened their existing ID laws to now require photos and three passed new voter ID laws.

A report from New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice showed that in Kansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin, all of which will enact stricter photo ID laws before the 2012 election, 3.2 million potential voters do not have the state-issued ID that will be required for them to vote.

Lawrence Norden, an author of the Brennan Center report, said he “absolutely” thinks the new ID laws could impact the outcome of the election.

“We’re not claiming that all 3.2 million, in the case of voter ID laws, are actually not going to be able to vote,” Norden said. “But what we are saying is, it’s going to make it harder for those people to vote and some portion of them are probably not going to be able to vote even though they want to.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Bachmann‚Äôs Former Campaign Manager Becoming Her Chief Critic

Stephen Morton/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Ed Rollins was running Rep. Michele Bachmann’s GOP campaign two weeks ago, but today it’s hard to find anyone doing more harm to her presidential hopes.

When Rollins gave up his post as campaign manager on Labor Day, a campaign spokesman blamed his move on health concerns and noted that he would continue working for her as “a valuable senior adviser.”

But in the two weeks since then, Rollins seems to be delivering a lot more verbal barbs than “valuable advice.”

He told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Monday that the Minnesota congresswoman lacks the “ability or the resources” to stay in the race longer than the Iowa caucuses, scheduled for February 2012 as the first leg of the nomination process.

He ripped Bachmann last week for suggesting that the HPV vaccine Gardasil — mandated by Texas Gov. Rick Perry in an effort to prevent cervical cancer (and overturned by the state legislature) — could cause mental retardation, a claim widely refuted by medical experts. Rollins told MSNBC’s Hardball that “the quicker she admits she made a mistake, the better.”

Rollins was already hitting out at his former boss even the same day he left Bachmann’s campaign.
“Legitimately, it’s a Romney-Perry race,” he said Sept. 5 on CNN.

Perhaps it should come as no surprise then that Rollins now says he has virtually no involvement with Bachmann’s campaign. In an interview four days ago on CNN, John King asked Rollins to rate his involvement with the Bachmann campaign on a scale of 1 to 10, with “one” being not involved and “10″ being very involved.

Rollins’ response? “Two or three.”

Ultimately, it’s nothing new for Rollins to rip his former bosses. He also went on public rants against Mike Huckabee when the former Arkansas governor decided not to run for president. But this instance is far more damaging because Bachmann is an actual candidate.

While Rollins is the most prominent and vocal critic of Bachmann these days, he is hardly the only former staffer of hers who is now speaking out. At least one other former Bachmann chief of staff — Ron Carey — has said unkind things on TV and in newspaper interviews about his former boss. And with Bachmann notorious for a high turnover rate as a boss, namely in her congressional office, more critics might soon emerge.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio