Segments in this Video

New Voter Identification Laws (00:56)


Citizens in Harrisburg, PA protest a new voter ID law that could disenfranchise one in ten voters, especially in Philadelphia. The law was enacted despite lack of evidence of voter fraud.

Voter Restrictions (00:58)

Moyers introduces his guests, Keesha Gaskins and Michael Waldman of the Brennan Center for Justice. Nine swing states recently required government-issued photo voter IDs to vote and over twenty states have restricted voter access.

Why the Fuss Over Voter ID? (01:58)

Waldman points out the various instances of voter restriction since the mid-term elections of 2010 when Republicans gained control of state legislatures.

Is Voter ID All About Politics? (01:42)

Gaskins responds that election laws that disenfranchise voters are antithetical to our history. Since Citizens United and the influx of money into the campaigns, each citizen's vote is important.

How Are these Laws Overly Restrictive? (03:20)

Gaskins points out that certain groups, like the poor, elderly, young and minorities are unfairly affected. One in ten eligible voters does not have a driver's license or similar photo ID.

Barriers To Obtaining A Voter ID (01:17)

Limited access to an issuing office can be a problem as well as the expense for proper documents, like birth certificates. Gaskins says there has been a concerted effort to limit access to the polls--something not seen since the Jim Crow era.

Is Racism Involved? (02:18)

Waldman states there is a concerted effort to discriminate against certain voters. When the Justice Department found the Texas voter ID law racially discriminatory, Texas declared the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional.

Modernize the Voter Registration System? (02:17)

The Pew Center recently found evidence that the voter registration system is inaccurate. Gaskins agrees that the system needs to be modernized so that all the systems can communicate to improve the database.

How Can The Viewers Participate? (04:11)

Gaskins and Waldman explain why they dedicate themselves to this struggle to protect voter rights in this country. They talk about what the viewers can do in their communities.

Credits: Moyers & Company: Suppressing the Vote (02:22)

Credits: Moyers & Company: Suppressing the Vote

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

Moyers & Company: Suppressing the Vote

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $129.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $194.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $129.95



The fight against voter fraud is a solution in search of a problem—these days, documented instances of voter fraud are virtually nonexistent. Nonetheless, since the 2010 midterm elections, ten states have passed laws requiring government-issued photo IDs to vote, identification that for many is too expensive or otherwise difficult to obtain. In this edition of Moyers & Company, Bill Moyers talks to Keesha Gaskins and Michael Waldman of the Brennan Center for Justice about new voter ID and other election laws that keep the young, elderly, minorities, and the poor from exercising one of the most fundamental American rights. “When these votes come under attack by this level of partisan gamesmanship, it’s completely inappropriate and antithetical to our history,” Gaskins tells Moyers. “This is a very real political issue, but beyond that, this is a real issue of real Americans being able to access and be self-determinative in how we’re governed.” Broadcast date: August 3, 2012. (20 minutes)

Length: 24 minutes

Item#: BVL50629

ISBN: 978-1-62290-616-1

Copyright date: ©2012

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video customers.

Only available in USA and Canada.