As in real estate, when it comes to polling places the three most important factors are location, location, location. The closer to home the polling place is located, the more likely that citizens will vote. In this important election year, however, many budget-strapped states are cutting back on locations, particularly in low-income and minority neighborhoods.
It’s a troubling development that could negatively impact participation in November. This week in Omaha, Nebraska, voters and voting rights advocates are protesting the closing of more than 100 polling locations—-over half the locations in Omaha—-by Douglas County Election Commissioner Dave Phipps. Outraged citizens say the decisions were made without citizen input, and primarily affect communities with the highest percentage of minorities.
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