Politics
5:59 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

"We Lurch": Activist Bob Moses On The Current Fight For Voting Rights

Civil Right activist and educator Bob Moses. Moses says the federal government should do more to ensure Americans' right to vote.
Civil Right activist and educator Bob Moses. Moses says the federal government should do more to ensure Americans' right to vote.
Credit miller_center / Flickr

Monday is the first day of early voting for this year’s primary elections.

In Florida, voting -- early or otherwise -- has been disputed in various ways over past decade.

Lawmakers cut back early voting after President Obama’s win in 2008 showed Democrats could bank votes before Election Day. But after long lines kept early voters waiting for hours during the 2012 election -- lawmakers extended early voting again.

Bob Moses has fought for voting rights for decades, organizing volunteers to register Mississippi voters during the Freedom Summer in the 1960s. He says the recent debate over early voting, voter ID, continue those earlier skirmishes.

"We will be fighting forever," Moses says, "rear-end battles against different state and local governments that for one reason or other want to control who votes, and when and how."

Moses says Americans need an affirmative right to vote and that the federal government should do more to protect everyone's right to vote.

Moses says the U.S. is in its third cycle with regard to constitutional history. The first period lasted until the Civil War. The second period lasted until The Civil Rights movement during the 1960s.

Progress is lurching, he says.

"The country is in the throes of, really, a devastating march towards inequality," Moses says, "which cuts across all races and ethnicities. And it hasn't yet found a moral center of how to fight against this."