Florida Family Council Gets Out The Yahoo Vote In Florida

JohnFloridaVoter turnout may diminish in Florida next year due to stringent new regulations meant to minimize "voter fraud." (Even though there never has been much voter fraud in Florida or anywhere else in the US.) But turnout will not diminish among religious folk, if John Stemberger, the president of the Florida Family Council's president, has his way. According to the Florida Independent, Stemberger has launched something called "Project Active Citizen" — an apparent effort to blur the lines between the Florida' pews and polls, teaching pastors to legally maximize their congregants' electoral clout. On his website, Stemberger writes:

What churches can do without limitation includes preaching, teaching and or studying any issue related to policy, politics and morality. You can also do unlimited voter registration drives, hand out voter guides contrasting issues; start a social issues committee; educate on viewpoints of candidates; have candidates appear at church services; and introduce candidates at church (as long as you give all candidates the same deference). What churches can not do include endorsing or oppose candidates or political party, make contributions to political candidates or PAC’s; make in-kind expenditures to candidates; use of the churches name to endorse a candidate; supporting or oppose an elected judicial candidate. What can pastors do as private citizens? Anything! Remember you are still a citizen of the United States and can fully engage the process in any way in that private capacity.

According to the Independent:

[On his website, Stemberger] explicitly warns that there have been changes to Florida’s voting rules that pastors need to be careful of. Unlike most groups that have engaged in voter registration drives in the past, Stemberger defends the law and says there have been "important changes to the voter registration laws enacted to avoid fraud."

It makes sense for Stemberger to defend his state's stringent new regulations — which, among other things, eliminate voters' ability to file a change of address on election day — as those regulations may be most easily overcome by religious voters, whose churches can organize voter registration drives and provide voting instruction seminars. That's precisely what Stemberger advocates. As he notes, pastors have an "army" at their disposal, and can organize the citizenry and disseminate information with an ease that non-religious voters can't hope to match.

Part of Stemberger's plan involves encouraging individual churches in his state to act as "hubs" for other churches nearby — providing them with get-out-the-vote literature and volunteer organizers. Stemberger hasn't said if any churches have agreed to participate, but even if they haven't, it hardly matters. Elections are still a year away.


  1. LincolnLounger says

    No voting fraud in the United States, huh? Ask Florida about all those felons voting while they were in jail. Come to Illinois, where we do election fraud right. Visit the East St. Louis, IL, precinct where the voters voted in alphabetical order — thanks to election “judges”. Go to Alexander County, IL, where there continue to be more registered voters than people living in the county and the election official went to prison. And, of course, never forget the fine folks in Cook County, IL, who perfected election fraud.

    One cannot function in society without an identification card. Period. Asking voters to present i.d. is common sense. If people cannot get their acts together to ensure they are registered (when one can do so practically anywhere) and with the correct address, that individual has no business voting.

  2. titus says

    during the civil rights period the black churches were always a political rallying point. so, with great sadness due to the dishonesty of those churches, i do not see why they can not serve the same function

  3. say what says


    Fact always seem to bite you in the butt

    since 2004 only 3 cases of supposed voter fraud presented to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement

    1st case 2004 investigated absentee ballot fraud per a complaint and found nothing arresting not a single person

    2nd case 2008 found micky mouse registered to vote and it was quickly rejected by Orange County

    3rd case 2009 ACORN notified Florida authorities that they themselves found discrepancies on voter registration forms they themselves helped to collect (big conspiracy when you notice it yourself and report it yourself = snark)11 arrests were made and the fraudulent registrations tossed out and again ACORN itself notified the authorities themselves on themselves

    WOWzers batman, either the scooby gang of repubs screaching voter fraud are completely incompetent or there has never been any huge amount of voter fraud in florida since at least 2004

    Anyway; voter id cards are not bad in of themselves if the state that enacts such offers said Id for free to all citizens (otherwise a poll tax) and sets up easy to get to sites to register for such (many elderly floridians do not have asy access to modes of travel and thus non easy to get to sites for such would be voter suppression of elderly voters)

    BUT where such laws have been enacted the opposite is done thus showing the intent is not valid IDs but rather voter suppression

    Actual Policy citations u[p to Governors stating do not tell voters the IDs are free

    To actual Governors shutting down DMV sites in minority neighborhoods and keeping DMV sites open in all white affluent neighborhoods….again trying to suppress minority non affluent voters

    The repub argument for voter IDs invalidates itself in the way repubs implement it

  4. LincolnLounger says

    As if Democrats don’t want to register their people to vote. So there are no opportunities to register at libraries, churches, “community action” centers, welfare offices, etc. It’s ridiculously easy to register to vote.

    Once again, one cannot function in this country with banking, Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, etc., without i.d. Calling it a poll tax is hogwash.

    For the record, the felons voting to which I referred was in 2000 and discovered by and publicized by Florida media. There was nothing not factual about it, Titus.

    And I didn’t even have the energy to get into the fraud that happens next door in Missouri, specifically St. Louis and Kansas City.

    Finally, it’s PRICELESS that the sleazebags at ACORN are being held up as some sort of paragon of virtue. Check out their record with regard to vote fraud in Nevada.

  5. say what says

    LOL Lincoln

    a simple wiki search proves your 2000 felon voting fraud charge to be misleading


    That in fact more valid voters were disenfranchised than felons caught voting

    Again repubs intent is not valid elections but rather disenfranchisment

    Voter ID’s is a good idea if repubs would not use it to disenfranchise voters

    again charging for said ID = poll tax and unconstitutional per the supreme court

    closing down voter id sites in minority districts while leaving voter id sites open in white affluent districts = 100% intent at disenfranchisement of voters and nothing to do about fraud

    If repubs would see to it that the states pay for the IDs and ID acquisition places in all districts at multiple sites while also providing bus service paid for by the state for any and all elderly etc individuals to go and get an ID then by all means Voter IDs can be a good thing

    BUT so-called voter fraud is not repub intent at all but rather disenfranchisement of voters by charging a poll tax fee for said Ids by limiting places where one can get said ID etc

  6. anon says

    There’s plenty of election fraud, even if not committed directly by the voters. If only more laws were subject to such rational scrutiny! Very few laws are. One thing you can’t do is prove a negative, as in, prove the law does not or will not suppress voter turnout. You can show a law suppresses voter turnout though. A lot of things suppress voter turnout: work schedules, weather, distance to the poll, health, risk of arrest, etc. You can’t substitute a missing vote with a lot of assumptions though. For example, how they might have voted. It would be helpful if elections were held over a two week period where the polls remained open the whole time. You can have fewer polling stations for most of the period and then on the official election day open up the rest. The state closest to this is TX. No excuse not to vote then.

  7. say what says

    anon the best system is compulsory voting and fines if you do not vote. Many places outside of the US do it. Australia has compulsory voting with “Blank” as an option for jehova witnesses etc

    hell the birthplace of democracy Greece had slaves strolling the roads with ropes dripping with red dye herding the people to the acropolis and if you ended up with red dye on you then you were fined/taxed for not doing your civic duty of taking part in democracy

    Vote days as national holidays and or weekends


  8. JDB says

    We make voting difficult for the same reason that the Constitution was originally written so that Senators were appointed rather than elected via popular vote. We make it difficult for the same reason that the two major party conventions get Congressionally approved tax-payer funding for security and such while third-party conventions get nothing.

    Power is like mass, in a way. Once you accumulate a significant amount of it, its own gravity begins to make further accumulation just about inevitable. Only truly large impacts break up large powerbases, just the same as planets. It took the “question” of slavery to destroy the Whigs, and fears over an undesirable resolution to that same “question” provoked all manner of people to engage in a cataclysm of violence against their fellow human beings. The “question” of racial purity destroyed much of mid-century Europe, and the issue of self-determination further eroded the powerbase of the colonial empires.

    The constant narrative in human history is that when too much power collects in the hands of too few people, things tend to get ugly. For everyone.

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