Questions about identification requirements for voting continue to inspire rancor from both sides of the aisle as policy-makers seek to prevent voter fraud and address concerns that such rules disenfranchise poor and minority voters. At the same time, the U.S. Supreme Court is preparing to hear arguments in two landmark cases on Indiana’s voter ID laws, Crawford v. Marion County Election Board and Indiana Democratic Party v. Rokita; the Court’s decision in these cases will have far-reaching effects for the 2008 election and beyond.
On January 7, two days before the Supreme Court arguments, the AEI-Brookings Election Reform Project and the Brookings Judicial Issues Forum hosted a discussion previewing the arguments and exploring the legal issues underlying the cases. Thomas Mann, co-director of the AEI-Brookings Election Reform Project and Brookings senior fellow, moderated the panel. Panelists included Mike Carvin, partner at Jones Day; Wendy Weiser, deputy director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law; and Stuart Taylor, Jr., a nonresident senior fellow at Brookings and a writer for National Journal and Newsweek.
My biggest concern is that Washington is signaling to Russia that it’s OK to meddle in the politics of sovereign nations which are your neighbors. Meddling is going on from Paris to Ukraine, from east to west and north to south, within Europe and at its borders, and always with the intent of undermining the credibility and effectiveness of democratic institutions. And it is being either denied or downplayed.