“I don’t want everybody to vote. Elections are not won by a majority of the people. They never have been from the beginning of our country and they are not now. As a matter of fact, our [the right’s] leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.”
Around the world the right has tried a range of measures to suppress turnout: legislating to limit early voting, database matching, literacy tests and restrictions on late enrollment.
Until recently, some of these limits on democratic participation were the norm here in New Zealand. Prior to 1999, for example, enrollments closed on Writ Day, around a month before the date of the election (you can now enrol up to the day before the election) and enrollment was not continuous meaning that electors were periodically deleted from the roll.
Ruralvotes.com has this on a recent example of Republican-led turnout suppression in the US:
Texas Republicans have worked overtime to make it harder for key Democratic voting groups to vote and be represented fairly. The redistricting games they’ve played are infamous. And for the Prairie View A&M University precincts, they put the early-polling place more than seven miles from the school.
So what did the students in this video do? They shut down the highway as they marched seven miles to cast their votes on the first day of early voting.