NAACP Head Proposes Mandatory Voting at San Antonio Convention

posted by 1200 WOAI - 

The President of the NCCAP, during the group's annual convention in San Antonio, suggested that strong steps need to be taken to improve voting levels in the United States, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Derrick Johnson told the group that while automatic voter registration laws, like the Clinton-era 'Motor Voter Law' are a good start, he says the U.S. needs to do more to improved voter turnout.

"How about if we imagine it this way---compulsory voting, which is the law in many countries around the world," Johnson said.  "Where it is a requirement for people to vote, not a chore."

The country which is most frequently cited by supporters of mandatory voting is Australia, where people can face a fine for not casting ballots in major elections.

"96% of individuals in Australia vote...compulsory voting," he said.  "We are doing well if 70% of the public votes, and that is during Presidential elections."

In addition to fines, other countries with mandatory voting use various punishments to get people to the polls.

In Brazil, for example, you have to show proof that you voted in the last two presidential elections before you can get a passport.  In Bolivia, officials can prevent a person from withdrawing their paycheck from the bank for up to three months if the person failed to vote.

Minority activist groups like the NAACP have been strongly pushing for ways to increase voter turnout, many blaming low turnout among minority voters, who have a tendency to lean Democrat, for the rise of Republican majority local and state governments, as well as the election of Donald Trump in 2016.

In fact, the theme of the NAACP convention is "Fight Hate--Vote."

Tomorrow night, former President Bill Clinton will addess the convention.

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