GALEO demands slice of voting power for Latinos in Gainesville

The state’s most active Latino organization has served notice that it intends to challenge the electoral system of the city of Gainesville, home to both the governor and lieutenant governor, for allegedly shutting Hispanics and other minorities out of local politics.

The Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials has sent a letter to Gainesville City Attorney James Palmour, informing him that it had retained legal counsel – Keegan Federal, the former DeKalb County judge – and wanted to negotiate a solution that would “avoid the expense of litigation which would be imposed on taxpayers in these already-difficult times.”

The issue GALEO is aiming at would be familiar to anyone who covered local government 30 or 40 years ago – Gainesville’s requirement that all members of its city council live in specific districts, but be elected citywide, rather than by single district itself.

Read Federal’s Aug. 21 letter in its entirety here. A few excerpts:

I want to express, both clearly and candidly, our sincere desire to resolve these issues through discussion and the development of mutually agreed-upon remediation of the current situation, particularly in light of the indisputable fact that the Hispanic population of District 3 is 58.99%, District 4 is 55.69%, and District 5 is 61.39%. In fact, in District 5, the voting age population (age 18 and above) is 55.17% Hispanic. These numbers are virtually unprecedented in recent voter dilution cases under the Voting Rights Act….

Even assuming that some members of Gainesville’s Latino population are non-citizens and therefore ineligible to vote….the 2010 census data is compelling….

[T]he City of Gainesville’s overall population is 57.82% “minority” (Black and Hispanic) residents. Even the voting age population of protected minorities is nearly a majority (49.71%). At the District level, this combined analysis is stunning: 82.7% in District 3, 67.41% in District 4, and 73.14% in District t. Notwithstanding these population levels, only one member of a statutorily protected minority group (an African-American) has ever served on the Gainesville City Council….

The letter notes that at-large voting has been mostly abolished in Georgia, with the exception of Forsyth County and the cities of Gainesville and Dalton.

On the last page of Federal’s letter:

Elections in Gainesville demonstrate a clear pattern of ethnically polarized voting, in the wake of intense anti-immigration campaigns of candidates favored by the white majority block.

This situation could get interesting, and quickly.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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44 comments Add your comment

Bernie

September 14th, 2012
4:54 pm

The Night the lights went BROWN in Gainesville…….things will be changing Soon and very soon. Surely, Hosea Williams is looking down from Heaven and smiling at this development. :)

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
4:57 pm

An ideology that must use trickery and deception to maintain power is a weak ideology.

Not all cultures have a memory consisting of only three months.

Almost all cultures only remember facts favorable to them.

Southern culture glosses over its crimes and swoons at its glories.

Latin culture has a very very very long memory. Very long.

Gainesville would do well to remember that.

They should take up the olive branch to work without legislation.

They are very unlikely to take up the olive branch to work without legislation.

Almost all conservatives seem to be liars.

dd

September 14th, 2012
5:03 pm

hoping things go better there than they have in Clayton County. Seriously. Wouldn’t wish that mess on anyone.

ld

September 14th, 2012
5:24 pm

When Reagan and the rest of the GOP thought amnesty would keep the illegals in the USA to could bust the unions and keep wagesm low, to the substantial detriment of the employee class, he “forgot” those people procreate, too, and/or,

in the alternative, the moneyed investor employer class, who are the actual owners of the GOP brand, had already decided to “bet the farm” on religion:

as in,

there would be no need to make a signifigant appeal to any specific demographic other than white males as long as Republicans, state by state, push to enact laws that

(a) seek to deny women the right to make their own medical and procreation decisions, and

(b) seek to deny equal right under law for anyone that fails to choose a lifestyle approved by the far right wing-nut religious zealots.

In effect, the GOP believe they’ve traded individual liberty and equal right under law for the masses in exchange for having the anti-abortion* one issue “value voters” go to the polls in a religious stupor and vote Republican regardless or their personal demographic and, usually, contrary to their own best economic interest.

Culling voting lists and putting rules in place to deny to some their right to participation in the election process is just the GOP hedging their “religion” bet.

trade the individual liberty counted on a signifigant number of them being Catholic and, therefore, malleable as far right wing religious zealots.

ld

September 14th, 2012
5:26 pm

d@rn accidentally hit submit before finished proofing and rewording stuff.

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
5:35 pm

Certain people have their name stolen on this site on a regular basis.

Stealing names is lying.

Lying is cowardly.

Almost all conservatives seem liars.

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
5:37 pm

I can make mistakes.

The letter l is not the letter t.

Almost all conservatives seem to be liars.

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
5:38 pm

disregard me – i am an idiot

Attack Dog

September 14th, 2012
5:39 pm

Don’t DEMAND, just register and VOTE.

Attack Dog

September 14th, 2012
5:51 pm

The only reason GA got another congressional district was because of the Latino population growth. If the people are illegal, then give up the seat.

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
5:51 pm

Enforcement of the rules on this site is laughable.

Some one else’s opinion of my intelligence shall be disregarded.

Lying is still cowardly.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Mimicry is the most effective form of mockery.

Very few conservative comics enjoy success.

Successful comics require empathy.

Conservatives mocked the use of empathy in judges.

Most conservatives lack empathy in general.

Lack of bladder control while sleeping is a pitiable condition.

Most conservatives seem to be liars.

cc

September 14th, 2012
6:09 pm

“Gainesville’s requirement that all members of its city council live in specific districts, but be elected citywide, rather than by single district itself.”
The City of Gainesville needs to settle this immediately. It’s not just improper, but also very dumb! If they are required to live in a district, that district and that district alone should elect or reject the candidate(s).

ld @ 5:24 pm:
What a crock!

Simple Logic @ 5:51 pm:
The only two things “laughable” on this site are you and Bernie.

Question Man

September 14th, 2012
6:21 pm

Will the political leadership of Gainesville resolve this issue in an amicable, sensible and professional manner? Or will they stonewall and deny until the end?

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
6:27 pm

Correlation does not equal causation.

Comments here cannot be deleted or edited.

Saying Max Cleland did not have medals and then turning around and pretending you always believed that makes one a liar.

Being a liar is pathetic.

Only a conservative would general laugh at the pathetic.

If you repeat a lie often enough some will believe it.

Generally the first people to believe a lie are conservatives unless it is from a source not acceptable to the tribe.

There are urban legends of huge lizard people who are hideously ugly trolling the internet pretending to be intelligent.

These urban legends are false. Everyone knows lizard people can’t read or write.

There are some conservatives that upon reading that would begin to believe in lizard people.

Almost all conservatives seem to be liars.

double

September 14th, 2012
6:27 pm

id ready fire aim-Women should have the right to make their own health and procreation decision,but before conception.

yuzeyurbrane

September 14th, 2012
6:30 pm

In 10 years you won’t recognize the political landscape of north Georgia. Look for Teaplican bastions like Hall and Gwinnett to go permanently Democratic and for Congressional races involving those counties to become quite competitive. The same to a lesser degree for Cobb County. The Teaplicans will fight hard to suppress the vote but it is inevitable there will be a power change. Demographics have a force of their own. Kind of ironic that Teaplicans are probably speeding the process by their bigoted positions.

Kris

September 14th, 2012
7:25 pm

To:
The Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials
Good luck with this mess and hope you win.

Impeach DEAL!

Not Blind

September 14th, 2012
7:39 pm

This illustrates the ability of illegal aliens to hijack the 14th Amendment and steal themselves some political clout. The downward spiral is looking more like a whirlpool.

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
7:50 pm

It is amazing to observe the pretzle logic of people who claim to have moral superiority on the constitution applied to the parts that they don’t like.

There is no freedom to lie in the constitution.

Commerce among the states does not mean that the founding fathers expected states to suddenly be making commercial deals with each other. Commerce is commerce.

A well organized militia was meant to imply an individual right to a fire arm.

Freedom from religion is not fascism. Establishment of religion is not fascism either actually. Fascism is fascism unless your a semantic fanatic.

All powers not included in this document means ALL powers not included in this document. The south had the legal right to secede.

The south lost the civil war due to right by conquest.

Germany learned their lesson after WWII.

The south didn’t.

Japan didn’t.

Both are filled with liars.

If you aren’t honest with yourself, you can never change.

The south will rise again. But it will probably be at the point of a bayonete. Sooner or later they will rise UP again and be put down. Again.

td

September 14th, 2012
8:18 pm

Simple Logic

September 14th, 2012
7:50 pm

Sounds like you are on some good stuff tonight or is it that you need to take your medicine before you get put in the rubber room?

buzzphuk

September 14th, 2012
10:11 pm

Simple Logic
September 14th, 2012
7:50 pm

“It is amazing to observe the pretzle logic of people who claim to have moral superiority on the constitution applied to the parts that they don’t like.

There is no freedom to lie in the constitution.”

I will create an account just to tell you this: I think you are the most wonderful, marvelous, bright and special person in the world for recognizing the impact that LYING, and it’s hardships, have wrought upon our country. But, then again, I might be LYING!

Constitutional RIGHT to lie? LOL! Man! I hope I never meet you in real life!!!

cc

September 14th, 2012
10:11 pm

td @ 8:18 pm:
Lack of proper diagnosis, medication and/or confinement.

double

September 14th, 2012
10:18 pm

Germany learned their lesson-Won’t be long before they will need a refresher course.

taco

September 14th, 2012
10:19 pm

Dalton is next. The cash cow for the city of Dalton is Dalton Utilities, that furnishes utilities to the carpet mills, and is owned by the city, and governed by good old boys appointed by the city’s elected officials.

It’s well documented that the town’s darlings, the local bubbas who done good in the carpet bidness, openly recruited illegal aliens to Dalton for all of the obvious reasons. Who would have thunk that those lowly, unsophisticated laborers would take political control of the town, and thus the town’s utility company, and thus the carpet mills themselves? Karma?

double

September 14th, 2012
10:25 pm

Taco do you not think they will join right in with the GOB’s and share control?

Kris

September 14th, 2012
10:38 pm

@ taco…your right

Dalton is now the town formally known as the carpet capitol hanks to the towns mayor and his carpet cronies.

double

September 14th, 2012
11:08 pm

The exploited take control.We need learn to speak spanish,and mandarin.

R

September 15th, 2012
12:00 am

“The City of Gainesville needs to settle this immediately. It’s not just improper, but also very dumb! If they are required to live in a district, that district and that district alone should elect or reject the candidate(s).”

As if the decisions made by the elected don’t affect the entire city vs. just the district…

GALEO why not spend your monies on fixing the challenge below first or simply pound sand.

“Even assuming that some members of Gainesville’s Latino population are non-citizens and therefore ineligible to vote…”

eli

September 15th, 2012
12:54 am

I propose the entire state abide by Gainesville’s rules. Let’s see how the exurban bigots in Cherokee county like it when we liberal Jews in Midtown start electing their representatives.

It is not a bad idea. There would be less race baiting and gay bashing. Bring it on…end bigotry in GA.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

September 15th, 2012
3:35 am

The South wasn’t beaten by credal Americans, it was beat by the Fifth Column of the Roman Anti-Christ, which after nailing its symbol, the Fasces, to the front wall of the U.S. House, went on to build Big Oil on murder and arson in 1870’s Cleveland; take over Big Media during the “Circulation Wars” of the 1910’s; finance the rise of Hitler from its U.S. collection plates through the Rockefellers and Bushes; killed John and Martin to send us as papal catspaw to defend its slave aristocracy in Vietnam, against Jeffersonian whig Ho Chi Minh; contrived the S&L Bailout to syphon off a half-trillion dollars into the pockets of Organized Crime and the Super Rich; committed 9/11 to take us to war to steal oil and to protect the Fed Scam now running the money presses to protect the banksters who belong in jail, and further reduce the American People – the Middle/Working Class.

The South shall rise again, White and Black, because the rest of the country is coming here to take part in G-d’s grace and because they don’t want their kids being molested by priests anymore.

Buckhead Boy

September 15th, 2012
5:51 am

Not Blind, the issue is Title 2 of the Voting Rights Act. The Act protects the right to vote, and illegal aliens enjoy no such right. For an excellent primer on the issue, I suggest that you read Judge Sidney Fitzwater’s order in the Farmers Branch case from last month.

Neither does Hispanic necessarily mean illegal alien, nor is there evidence of a problem with Hispanic or other illegal aliens voting that could result in the “hijacking” of any election. After a year long effort, New Mexico identified exactly one incident of an illegal alien voting. Florida, after five months’ work, has also identified only one incident, and that involved a man of Canadian nationality and Austrian descent. Both of these states have high proportions of Hispanics in their populations.

Judge Fitzwater was a Republican appointed to the federal bench by President Reagan, and I am neither Hispanic nor an illegal alien. My forebears obtained their citizenship the old fashioned way — dispossessing the Native Americans.

Now, sir, you may pick-up your stick and follow your dog from the room.

Rick in Grayson

September 15th, 2012
8:26 am

The demographic numbers for Hispanics in Gainesville extracted from the Census have nothing to do with those legally in the country/allowed to vote.

What are the percentages of eligible voters by race/ethnicity in these districts? I don’t believe that anyone has those numbers, and if they did, they would be far less than 50% of the population of those districts.

Liberals and Hispanic advocacy groups tend to overeach when they champion their influence in the voter pool.

How many Hispanics are serving on the Gainesville JURY pool!

Not Blind

September 15th, 2012
8:43 am

Buckhead Boy. Illegal aliens have been flooding our borders for decades. Their anchor babies are “US Citizens” [ in name if not in ideology ]. These anchor babies are now coming into voting age at an accelerating rate. This doesn’t even take into account the misguided Reagan amnesty’s effect on the voting rolls of certain precincts. It is also foolish to not consider that there are many people voting that shouldn’t be. Al Franken is a perfect example of someone being elected to office on what appears to be the power of fraudulent voting.

honested

September 15th, 2012
9:03 am

Maybe GALEO should talk to the members of the GA House that want to turn every neighborhood into a little City.
Secede from Gainesville and invent your own little burg.

Here in the OnePartyState, anything is possible (for enough cash).

honested

September 15th, 2012
9:07 am

not blind (at least pretending),

How in the world is Al Franken somehow a ‘perfect example’ of imaginary fraudulent voting?

A Democrat elected to the Senate from a strong and reliably Democratic state who overturned a Senator that would never have been elected had his opponent not died in a plane crash a few days before the election?

That smacks of ‘fraud’ to you?

I do believe you misunderstand the many definitions of ‘blind’.

taco

September 15th, 2012
9:13 am

@Rick
You didn’t read the article good. Dalton has four voting districts and two of those districts are all Hispanic. It’s not based on the Hispanic percentage of voters in the total population, but on the percentage within the voting districts. If there’s no non-Hispanics within a district, then one Hispanic vote will elect the inevitable Hispanic candidate, running in that district. Two registered Hispanic voters could elect half of the city council.

taco

September 15th, 2012
9:31 am

@not blind
Based on my observations in Dalton, which has the highest percentage of illegal alien residents in Georgia(greater than Gainesville), Dalton’s who’s who of the Republican Party are 100% responsible for recruiting them. I don’t think that Dalton is unique in that respect.

Bob Loblaw

September 15th, 2012
9:34 am

@ Bernie:

Hosea Williams is not going to smile down upon advancement of Mexican immigrants over black citizens.

taco

September 15th, 2012
9:43 am

@ Bob
Saxby didn’t just throw Hosea and the black citizens under the bus – he threw the lower economic tier of whites with them. I don’t know if it is Republican strategy to eliminate the middle class, or just stupidity – either way, it’s happening.

Bob Loblaw

September 15th, 2012
9:48 am

Ain’t saying you don’t have a point about economic policies hurting the working poor, regardless of race, but how did Saxby enter this? Did I miss something? Thanks.

taco

September 15th, 2012
9:56 am

AS they fanned into the Vidalia onion fields of Georgia, the 45 federal agents were doing exactly what they thought they were supposed to do. It was 1998, and they had just arrested 21 illegal immigrant farm workers and were about to round up hundreds more.

. . But the raid met with a stinging rebuke from what might have seemed a surprising source: two powerful Republicans from Georgia’s Congressional delegation.

Saxby Chambliss, then a representative and now a senator, accused immigration officials of using “bullying tactics…The Immigration and Naturalization Service backed down, granting temporary amnesty to illegal onion pickers in 19 Georgia counties.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/16/weekinreview/16greenhouse.html?pagewanted=all

Rockdale

September 15th, 2012
4:09 pm

At-large voting doesn’t exist only in Forsyth, Gainesville, and Dalton. All commissioners are elected at-large in Rockdale.

charlie319

September 15th, 2012
5:34 pm

It tells me that these minority voters are not voting for minority candidates.
Let the matter go to trial.

yuzeyurbrane

September 15th, 2012
5:47 pm

Not Blind–you appear to be blind to the facts and the law; otherwise, you make a good case for voter suppression.