Mediaite is reporting on the story of a Brooklyn resident who received a creepy, threatening letter from the Democratic Party. Jonathan Coulton tweeted a photo of himself holding a piece of paper threatens to check his voting records and question Coulton if he doesn’t vote.
I think the Democrats just threatened me: pic.twitter.com/wGvYInosk5
— Jonathan Coulton (@jonathancoulton) October 30, 2014
Mediaite also reported that other registered Democrats in New York have received the same letter. Democrats denied that they were strong-arming people.
“This flyer is part of the nationwide Democratic response to traditional Republican voter suppression efforts,” said Peter Kauffmann, “because Democrats believe our democracy works better when more people vote, not less.”
Talking Points Memo reported that voter-shaming is fairly common in many states:
In Alaska, voters have complained about receiving a similar kind of letter from a group that received a hefty contribution from a charter-school supporter who wants to elect a GOP Senate (though he disavowed the mailers).
“Why do so many people fail to vote? We’ve been talking about the problem for years, but it only seems to get worse,” the Alaska letter says. “This year, we’re taking a new approach. We’re sending this mailing to you, your friends, your neighbors, your colleagues at work, and your community members to publicize who does and does not vote.”
In Florida, a St. Petersburg blog reported earlier this week on a letter sent by a group funded by the state and national realtors association. “Your neighbors will know,” the letter warns. “It’s public record.”
Yet another reported vote-shaming letter in North Carolina, sent by the state Democratic Party, contains some of the exact same wording as the New York letter.