I've been wanting to post something about this for the last day or two, but I just couldn't muster up the energy to do it. Sometimes learning of things like this is so disheartening that it just sucks the energy out of me, despite how important it is for people to be aware of it. Political scientists and sociologists have noted for years now that a more engaged citizenry usually translates into more votes for democrats (less so now because of the ideological shift to the right over the past 30-years) and third party candidates. Political savvy folks know this too. If more voters threatens your political ideology, and you have no morals or soul then you have a vested interest in decreasing the number of voters. That's what's going on here. It's despicable and embarrassing that in the 21st century we have people actively seeking to deny others the right to vote.
There's a long history of denying people the right to vote in this country. Because of my interest in criminology I'm most familiar with felon disenfranchisement laws that deny convicted felons the right to vote, while in prison, on parole, or forever (in a couple states--Kentucky and I think until recently, Washington State). Because law making and law enforcement is most heavily focused on urban poor (mostly racial minorities--through the war on drugs, gang laws, and weapon violations) these voting policies by default serve to remove the voting rights of thousands and thousands of African American men (a contemporary version of social control with roots dating back to the Civil Rights Acts, and further back, slavery and European expansion across the globe--there's lots of historical work on this). In fact, the Sentencing Project notes that approximately 5.3 million Americans are denied the right to vote by such policies, with 13% of the Black population falling into this category. Jeff Manza and Christopher Uggen have both written on this phenomenon and how it's effected elections (several state level races, U.S. Congressional races and the 2000 presidential election--recall Dade County, Florida).
In New Orleans there's an organization called Voice of the Ex Offender (or V.O.T.E.) headed by Norris Henderson. A friend of mine met Norris while he (my friend) was in Angola service a 35 year sentence for dealing heroin (he actually didn't get caught dealing but instead had an amount that police and the prosecutor said was too much for individual use and so he must be dealing--apparently this assumption was enough to convince a judge).
Jimmy Huck over at the HuckUpChuck wrote a little on this phenomenon, as a recent conservative commentator Matthew Vadum published his argument for denying the poor the right to vote on the website American Thinker. TalkingPointsMemo also touched on this.