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    ‘Char Peterson’



    Soft Launch of WI Voter ID Allows for Some Interesting Stories

    Friday, August 19th, 2011

    Wisconsin’s voter identification bill has stirred up much controversy in the state.

    The “soft implementation” of the law during the recent recall elections allowed some interesting views and stories to surface. Before we explore them further, here is some background on the Wisconsin voter identification law: The law states that a driver’s license or a state identification card issued by the Department of Transportation will be required at the polls starting in 2012. (Certain student IDs, military IDs, tribal IDs, or a passport will also be accepted.)

    Now if you do not have these types of identification, you will have to obtain them with another form of identification (such as a birth certificate). If you do not have these other forms of identification, then you may have to pay to receive a copy of them. Once you pay for your ID copy, wait however long it takes the state to send it, and receive it – then and only then can you be on your merry way to the DMV.

    (State legislators from Milwaukee have introduced legislation that would allow county residents to receive a free copy of their birth certificates for those who need it to get an ID for voting.  That bill has not become law.)

    Once you’ve acquired your birth certificate, you’re able to attain your driver’s license or state identification card. That’s great and all, but if you don’t have a driver’s license how will you get to the DMV? You could ask someone to drive you, hail a cab (even though you may have spent all of your money on a birth certificate copy), or take public transportation.

    Let’s be honest though, if going to the DMV is bad then taking public transportation to the DMV may be worse. This is where Charlotte Riley steps in.

    Riley, a former teacher from Dell Prairie, WI, is offering to drive people to the DMV to obtain proper voting identification. She has stated that she will give rides to Republicans, Democrats, probably even Scott Walker. Riley knows that this new voting process is tough and filled with barriers, so she figures she might as well make the best of it and give people a ride: “A person is a person as far as I’m concerned, and I think that they should be able to exercise their voting rights. This is one way I can help them do that.” You can read more about Charlotte’s endeavor and even hit her up for a ride here: http://bit.ly/rrbCqE.

    Okay, you did it! You received your birth certificate, obtained the proper voter identification, and now it’s finally time to go to the polls and flash that glossy ID. Well, not so fast.

    While the law will not be enacted until 2012, the state asked city clerks to voluntarily require voter ID at the polls during Wisconsin’s recent recall elections. De Pere City responded, “Sure, why not?” and as a result, its polling centers offered a good preview of the 2012 polls.

    “We had a wait of up to an hour in line at two of our polling places,” De Pere City Clerk Char Peterson said. Many voters took time showing their IDs and inquiring about the law when they showed up at the polls unaware of it: “That slowed it down, just answering their questions and calming them down because some of them did become upset, even having to be asked for that,” Peterson said. Peterson does not oppose the law; however, she is worried about the time it takes and the long lines it has caused: “I am concerned that people may become frustrated and say, ‘I’m not going to bother voting.’ That is my biggest concern.” Well, at least you can practice waiting in line at the polls when you go the DMV to get your ID! You can find out more about De Pere City’s wait to vote here: http://bit.ly/q2AnV7.

    These odds and ends stories that have surfaced around WI’s voter identification bill are great indicators as to the effects it has on constituents and lawmakers. They are also good calls to action, which people like Charlotte Riley have already taken. You may think the law does not affect you, but the long lines in De Pere City affected those with and without IDs. Obtaining and using the proper voter ID is long and difficult for everyone, it just depends how much of the process will inconvenience will you.

    If you want to help people get IDs or need to know more information, go to www.rockthevote.com/wisconsin.

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    @caitlinmagu
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, August 17, 2011

    Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

    President Obama will give a jobs oriented speech in September; the murder of a 91-year-old DC socialite reveals strange details about her younger husband; Democrats win the last two Wisconsin Senate recall elections; a University of Miami football booster claims he provided illegal benefits to players; and two British men receive four years in jail for posting riot inciting Facebook statuses. In the entertainment world, Gerard Depardieu urinates in a plane cabin and even though they both love an overload of cologne, Abercrombie & Fitch asks The Situation to stop wearing its clothes.

    Caitlin

    CRUCIAL:

    Obama to Give Major Jobs Speech, http://apne.ws/6gU4tQ
    In September, President Obama will give a speech outlining a detailed plan for unemployment. The speech will focus on job creation, his plan for which may include tax cuts and jobs friendly infrastructure ideas. He will also propose a deficit plan, which will include how “to pay for the cost of his new short-term economic ideas.”

    Viola Drath’s Husband, Muth, Charged with Second-Degree Murder in Her Killing, http://wapo.st/oW9eIw
    Police are charging 47-year-old Albrecht Gero Muth with the murder of his 91-year-old Washington, DC socialite wife, Viola Drath. Drath seems to have died from strangulation and blunt-force. Drath, who had thrown elite parties in her Georgetown home, had been abused by Muth before but dropped the charges. Muth had also told people that he was a general in the Iraqi army; however, it seems to have no record of him.

    Two Democrats Hold Off Recall Challenges, http://bit.ly/nULBSw
    Wisconsin Democratic state Senators Bob Wirch and Jim Holperin have won Wisconsin’s last recall elections. Despite the victories, Republicans still hold the majority in the Wisconsin Senate.

    Facebook Cases Trigger Critcism of ‘Disproportionate’ Riot Sentences, http://bit.ly/qMJgr6
    Two British men have been sentenced to four years in prison for posting Facebook statuses that urged people to riot. Liberal Democrats are criticizing the sentence as too harsh, especially because the messages did not incite any actual riots. Deputy Prime Minister and head of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg has proposed that rioters wear orange jumpsuits and clean up the riots’ destruction. He has also proposed a committee to determine the cause of the riots.

    Renegade Miami Football Booster Spells Out Illicit Benefits to Players, http://yhoo.it/qxZxJR
    University of Miami football booster, Nevin Shapiro has told Yahoo that he illegally supported 72 University of Miami athletes from 2002 to 2010. Shapiro’s expenses for the players included “cash, prostitutes, entertainment in his multimillion-dollar homes and yacht, paid trips to high-end restaurants and nightclubs, jewelry, bounties for on-field play (including bounties for injuring opposing players), travel and, on one occasion, an abortion.” Shapiro said that at least seven coaches knew about the benefits he provided. While Shapiro is currently in jail for a Ponzi scheme, Yahoo says it has evidence of these occurrences.

    Clerk: Voter ID Slows Down Voters, http://bit.ly/q2AnV7
    Many people who voted in the Wisconsin recall elections faced long lines at the polls. De Pere City Clerk Char Peterson attributes the long-waits to the state’s voter id law. Many voters took time showing their ids and inquiring about the law when they showed up at the polls unaware of it: “That slowed it down, just answering their questions and calming them down because some of them did become upset, even having to be asked for that,” Peterson said. Peterson does not oppose the law; however, she is worried about the time it takes up and the long lines it has caused: “I am concerned that people may become frustrated and say, ‘I’m not going to bother voting.’ That is my biggest concern.”

    Perry Sticks by His Bernanke Attack, http://on.wsj.com/nDjd6F
    Texas Governor and presidential hopeful, Rick Perry publicly said that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s behavior is “treasonous.” The controversial remark even had some conservatives up in arms. Despite this, Perry is telling reporters that he stands by what he said. When asked about Perry’s comment, President Obama remarked that candidates have “got to be a little more careful” about what they say.

    CULTURAL:

    Taylor Armstrong: On Hand at Discovery of Husband’s Body, http://bit.ly/p3kqfN

    Abercrombie & Fitch to The Situation: We’ll Pay You to Stop Wearing Our Clothes, http://bit.ly/mVYW4a

    Gerard Depardieu Relieves Himself in Plane Cabin, http://bit.ly/oi1WwG

    Kevin Federline and Victoria Prince Welcome Daughter, http://bit.ly/p2PsI1

    Justin Bieber Tops List of Richest Teen Entertainers, http://on.mtv.com/qpoKgC

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    @caitlinmagu
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com