The Daily Scoop: Fla. GOPer: We wanted to suppress black votes


Florida’s disgraced former GOP chairman says the party had meetings about “keeping blacks from voting”

In the debate over new laws meant to curb voter fraud in places like Florida, Democrats always charge that Republicans are trying to suppress the vote of liberal voting blocs like blacks and young people, while Republicans just laugh at such ludicrous and offensive accusations. That is, every Republican except for Florida’s former Republican Party chairman Jim Greer, who, scorned by his party and in deep legal trouble, blew the lid off what he claims was a systemic effort to suppress the black vote. In a 630-page deposition recorded over two days in late May, Greer, who is on trial for corruption charges, unloaded a litany of charges against the “whack-a-do, right-wing crazies” in his party, including the effort to suppress the black vote.

In the deposition, released to the press yesterday, Greer mentioned a December 2009 meeting with party officials. “I was upset because the political consultants and staff were talking about voter suppression and keeping blacks from voting,” he said, according to the Tampa Bay Times. He also said party officials discussed how “minority outreach programs were not fit for the Republican Party,” according to the AP.

The comments, if true (he is facing felony corruption charges and has an interest in scorning his party), would confirm what critics have long suspected. Florida Gov. Rick Scott is currently facing inquiries from the Justice Department and pressure from civil rights groups over his purging of voter rolls in the state, an effort that critics say has disproportionately targeted minorities and other Democratic voters. One group suing the state claims up to 87 percent of the voters purged from the rolls so far have been people of color, though other estimates place that number far lower. Scott has defended the purge, even though he was erroneously listed as dead himself on the rolls in 2006.

As Vanity Fair noted in a big 2004 story on the Sunshine State’s voting problems, “Florida is a state with a history of disenfranchising blacks.”

Read more…

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4 Comments to “The Daily Scoop: Fla. GOPer: We wanted to suppress black votes”

  1. Nice find. Let’s hope this explodes into bigger news. I certainly hadn’t heard about his comments. The Republican Party is a disgrace at this point.

    • Oh I hope it does. I hadn’t heard about it either except through a tweet via ThinkProgress. Salon didn’t advertise it very well.

      I’d say the Republicas have surpassed their previous disgraces even back when Gingrich ran the House. Who knew he could be topped.

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