I grew up reading comic books wanting to be a superhero. Those who speak the truth are heroes, anything less is a lie.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Mary Kiffmeyer - Voting is not a Right

Mary Kiffmeyer just likes tweeking the SoS website. After Mark Ritchie’s press conference the other day where he said:

According to Minnesota Session Laws 2006, Chapter 242, Sections 17 and 18, residents of battered women’s shelters and group homes now have the right to designate an agent to pick up an absentee ballot and deliver it to them. The legislature passed this law on bipartisan basis this year and it went into effect on August 1st.

Mary Kiffmeyer changed the SoS website yet again (from #1 below (which I have a pdf of) to #2 this to #3 this).

Because the section that changed is subtle here is what it was (Sept 5th'06):

#1: The Agent Delivery Designation Form is for people health care facility residents who want someone to handle the transmission of their absentee ballots.

To this (Sept 7th '06):

#2: The Agent Delivery Designation Form is for health care facility residents who want someone to handle the transmission of their absentee ballots. The Residential Care Facility Locator is a search tool intended to help identify local facilities for purposes of absentee ballot voting.

And now this (Sept 8th '06):

#3: The Agent Delivery Designation Form is to authorize an agent in writing to pick up and return an absentee ballot for the following voters:

  • in a healthcare facility (hospitals, residential treatment centers and nursing homes governed by Minnesota Statutes 144.50 or 144A.02),
  • a participant in a residential program for adults licensed under section 245A.02, subd. 14,
  • or a resident of a shelter for battered women as defined in section 611A.37, subd. 4.

This activity may only occur the four days preceding an election, up until 2:00 p.m. on Election Day.

The Residential Care Facility Locator is a search tool intended to help identify local facilities for purposes of absentee ballot voting.

Other then correcting the needed grammar problems from #1-#3, this change did not make it clear that there is help for these people, but rather it simply changed the language and gave another link to yet another pdf. And if you think because the pdf hints at being a “Locator” and said to be a “search tool” will help battered women, you are taking the definitions of those words too seriously (kinda like “Mission Accomplished”). In that pdf, under the section for battered women shelters, it just refers searchers to contact… get this... The Department of Corrections.

She also finally fixed the agent delivery of ballots on her website for battered women and group home residents, but the form they fill out they still have to say which place they’re a “patient”. I don’t think that battered women or group home residents consider themselves patients where they live.

What was the point Mary? We all know we need another SoS, and it is good that you keep trying to follow Mark’s lead, but if you really want to help battered women and these other needy people, just give them the proper information in a direct and efficient manor.

Mary must simply believe that voting is not a right, but a privilege and that if you have to jump through a bunch of hoops to vote - so be it.

MN Publius has a post on the same subject - You guys ROCK!

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