Catholic Analysis posts on a interesting contrast.
As a native New Orleanian, I have continued to follow Louisiana politics closely over the past few years. So I recall things that many of my readers would really have no reason to be aware of or remember as non-Louisianians. I recall a recent U.S. Senate election in Louisiana in which incumbent Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu was running for re-election. The election was on a Saturday. By Saturday afternoon on election day, Sen. Landrieu noticed and became concerned that turnout in the heavily Democratic black neighborhoods of New Orleans appeared to be lagging. That was bad news for the Democratic Senator. So the political machine cranked up and voters were quickly and efficiently transported to the polls in the very same black neighborhoods that have now been devastated by the hurricane. When an election was at stake, plenty of poor black New Orleanians were aggressively picked up and taken to the polls.
There is some evidence to back up reports of vote-hauling here.
…"Well, my friend had asked me did I want to go vote," another New Orleans woman told a Jenkins investigator. "She said they was paying people to go vote for this person. I say who was the person? She say Mary, Mary Landrieu." The woman got in a van that had three bench seats behind the driver and was driven to three polling places and given a LIFE sample ballot off which to vote. She was promised $25 for each stop. "Hey, hey all I got was $25!" she complains in the interview. "We went to three places. The agreement was we was supposed to get $25 each place." As consolation, she was given a Mary Landrieu T-shirt: "They promise you, and then they going give us ol’ stanky T-shirt with her picture on it." (She threw the T-shirt away in a dumpster.)
…One teller at a bank in Coushatta, La., reports that a woman cashed a $50 check from the Democratic party on November 5 and explained that it was given "to me to haul my kind of people to vote." Two other $50 checks from the party showed up the next day.
…A New Orleans man told a Jenkins investigator that he went to three different polling places and voted at each four or five times. He says he was paid $60 for each stop, was carried in a van with several other people, and was handed a yellow sample ballot that fits the description of the LIFE sample ballot (differently colored sample ballots, distributed in massive quantities on election day, are the hallmarks of the various New Orleans political organizations). The man says he didn’t have to sign in or stand in line at the various polling places.
…All the interviews follow a similar pattern: An election worker promises someone money to vote; he transports him to the polls in a car or van full of people; he gives him a LIFE ballot to show him for whom and for what to vote; the voter either signs his name at multiple polling places or doesn’t sign at all or, in one case, signs someone else’s name. Some of the interviews suggest a fairly well-organized effort. One woman says that she was taken in a van to a polling place where she voted twice, once in her own name, the second time in a name given to her by the driver. She says the driver selected who would vote at which polling places.
Beyond just the question of vote-buying or repeat voting In Louisiana it is actually illegal to rent vans or buses for the purpose of transporting people to the poll, though this does not apply to private parties using their own vehicles without any compensation bringing people to the polls. These laws were passed because of a long association between vote hauling and vote buying in Louisiana.
So if another hurricane ever hits there on election day they might already have the buses ready this time.