Wednesday in Whitewater will be mostly cloudy, with a few showers and a thunderstorm, and a high of sixty-three. Sunrise is 5:15 AM and sunset 8:33 PM, for 15h 18m 08s of daytime. The moon is a waxing gibbous with 75.3% of its visible disk illuminated.
On this day in 1987, on a visit to West Berlin, Pres. Reagan challenges Soviet leader Gorbachev to “tear down this wall!”
Recommended for reading in full:
The Washington Post editorial board writes The U.S. still hasn’t done nearly enough to stop election interference:
IT IS obvious to all but the willfully ignorant that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election. What is less obvious is what this country is going to do about it. So far, the signs have pointed to: not nearly enough. A report from scholars at Stanford University offers one road map — and shows how the nation remains shockingly near the beginning of the road.
The Stanford report includes 45 recommendations for protecting the U.S. democratic process. Some three years after Vladimir Putin’s government planted trolls and bots on social media sites to propagandize for Donald Trump, hacked into the emails of officials on Hillary Clinton’s campaign and probed election infrastructure for vulnerabilities, the president’s team has not pursued a single one of them. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) continues to block even the consideration of stand-alone legislation that would bolster election security.
The refusal to act is dangerous. Though Russia infiltrated voting networks in 2016, there is no evidence any machines were tampered with or votes changed. Next time, we might not be so fortunate.
Vanessa Williamson and Jackson Gode describe Red-tape voter suppression: How new, draconian voter registration rules undermine voting rights:
In Tennessee, a draconian new law aims to penalize groups engaging in voter registration campaigns. Civil rights advocates have rightly compared the legislation to the racist voter suppression policies of the Jim Crow era and are contesting the law’s constitutionality. Having experienced the effects of similar legislation in the field, we can say with confidence that if the Tennessee law is allowed to stand, it will undermine voter registration efforts and keep eligible voters off the rolls.
In 2018, in Dallas, Texas, and Cleveland, Ohio, our team conducted a randomized controlled trial of a new policy idea: offering voter registration to people when they file their income tax returns at Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites. The experiment was a success: the program doubled voter registration rates among the initially unregistered.
A less encouraging finding was the sheer disparity between our two test states. Each year, millions of Americans register to vote or update their voter registration thanks to the tireless efforts of civil society organizations that run voter registration tables, go door-to-door with voter registration forms, or otherwise remind potential voters to get registered in time to vote. But running a voter registration campaign that would be uncontroversial in other states is extremely difficult in Texas, because Texas has some of the most severe limits on voter registration of any state in the nation. It takes a simple procedure and makes it needlessly bureaucratic and extremely intimidating to both voters and volunteers, while doing absolutely nothing to make voter registration more secure