Voting Rights Watch: FL and VA among 'most problematic' battleground states, says National Journal

Eliza Newlin Carney at National Journal today echoes our analysis at Facing South that Florida and Virginia are two of the most important battleground states in 2008 -- and two states where "a worrisome combination of legal, administrative and partisan controversies spells trouble."

In Florida, Carney sees long lines and the controversial "no match" law causing problems:
More than 12,000 voters have been relegated to provisional status due to a controversial "no match, no vote" law that bars new voters from registering if their driver's license or Social Security numbers don't perfectly match government records. But election officials in about half the state's counties have said they will allow flagged voters with proper ID to cast ballots anyway. This irregular enforcement, while applauded by voting rights advocates, could itself become the basis for a legal challenge.
Under-resourced voting centers and deceptive campaign tactics are issues in Virginia:
The state NAACP and other civil rights groups recently sued Gov. Tim Kaine, a Democrat, claiming inadequate preparation for the more than 300,000 voters who have joined the state's rolls since January. Virginia polling places were overwhelmed in 2004, and state law requires only one machine for every 750 voters. "That's just not enough machines for too many voters," said Tova Wang, an elections specialist for public interest group Common Cause.

Deceptive fliers have cropped up, and problems could arise for student voters, who earlier this year were improperly blocked from registering at their dormitory addresses. "It's never been a battleground state before," noted Wang. "There are not the resources in the state, and there are not the protocols in place to handle it."