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registered -- adult residents who did not vote, 16 million were not registered. this is one of the places i think we should focus efforts. the speech i gave in 2011 at the lgb -- lbj library, i called for the automatic registration of all eligible citizens. the arguments i made then, i believe are still sound. the ability to vote is a right, not a privilege. under the current system many voters must follow needlessly complex and cumbersome voter registration rolls. before and after every election these in state and local officials have to manually process new applications, most of them handwritten, leaving the system creating chaos of the polls. the pew center estimates that one in eight but registration's in the u.s. is invalid or significantly inaccurate. modern technology provides them a i believe, a straightforward
fix. if we have the political will to bring our election systems into the 21st century. the government can and should automatically register citizens to vote by compiling from existing databases a list of all eligible residents in each jurisdiction. several states have taken steps in that direction. oregon implemented an automatic registration procedure at its dmv in january. they have seen a fourfold increase in registrants. california, vermont, and west virginia have passed similar laws. other states are leaning in that direction as well. it is estimated that if implemented at dmv's, but other key government agencies -- not just the dmv, these needed reforms could add 50 million eligible voters to the rules -- to the rolls, save money, and increase accuracy in the record necessary to the system. we must also address the fact
that over one in nine americans move every year. the registration does not move with them. many would be voters do not realize this until after they have missed the deadline for registering in their new location, which can fall a full month or more before election day. election officials, i believe, should work together to establish a program of permanent, portable registration so that voters can vote at their new polling place on election day. until that happens, i think we should implement failsafe procedures to correct voter roll errors by allowing every voter to cast a regular, non-provisional ballot on election day. several states have already taken this step, but it has shown to increase turnout by at least three-five percentage points. these efforts would not only improve the integrity of elections, it would also save precious taxpayer dollars.
despite these benefits, there will always be those that say that using registration hurdles will only lead to voter fraud. let me be clear, voter fraud, to the extent that it actually exist is not acceptable. it should not be tolerated. as i learned earlier in my career as a prosecutor, i actually investigated and prosecuted real, real voting fraud cases -- making voter registration and voter -- voting easier are not likely by themselves to make the elections more susceptible to fraud. indeed, those on all sides of the debate have essentially acknowledged that in person voting fraud is uncommon. we have to be honest about this. we must recognize that our
ability to ensure the strength and integrity of our election systems, and to advance the reforms necessary to achieve this depends on whether the american people are informed, engaged, and well -- willing to demand fact-based intentions and common sense solutions and regulations that make voting more accessible. politicians may not readily and willingly vote for the systems they were elected. even though 80% of republicans oppose the citizens united decision and two thirds of voters support strengthening voter protections in the restoring of the voting rights act. only we, the people can bring about meaningful change and alter current discriminatory chance -- trends. i want to commend the brennan center for its leadership on these issues. the center first proposed automatic voter registration in 2007. and has done much since then to advance the policy in other voting enhancements through
research and public education. so, speak out. raise awareness about what is at stake. column me political party most responsible to resist temptation to suppress certain voters in hope of obtaining electoral votes. instead, appeal to more voters. what do they fear? the very people they claim they want to represent? urge policymakers at every level to reevaluate our electoral systems and to reform them in ways that encourage, not limit participation. insist that they make it easier to register and easier to vote. ask them why is voting tied to a single tuesday in november? work to expand voting days and hours so that many of our fellow citizens need not choose between casting a ballot and keeping their job. increase, not decrease as was disastrously done in arizona recently, the number of polling
places where fellow citizens can truly participate in democracy. today we cannot and must not take the right to vote for granted. nor can we sure the sacred responsibility the falls upon our shoulders. throughout his presidency lyndon johnson made the promise of the 1965 voting rights act real. he frequently pointed out, again i will quote -- america was the first nation in the history of the world to be founded with a purpose. to write wrong and to do justice." of the last to sign -- over the last two centuries the film it has taken many forms -- protest, compassion, war and peace, and a range of efforts to make -- as another president said governments of and by and for the people shall not parish from the earth. today there are competing visions about how the government should move forward. we are a noisy nation, that is a good thing.
that is what the democratic process is all about. creating space for thoughtful debate. grading opportunities for citizens to voice their opinions. ultimately letting the people chart their own course. our nation has worked and even fought to help people around the world establish such a process. here at home, honoring our democracy demands that we remove any and all barriers to voting. a goal that all american citizens of all political backgrounds must share. despite so many decades of struggle, sacrifice, and of achievement, we must remain vigilant in safeguarding our most basic and important right. recent actions i believe our shameful and have the potential to reverse the progress that defines us and has made the nation exceptional, as well as an example for all of the world. we must be true to the art of america's history. that compels us to be more inclusive with regard to the franchise.
we must never forget the purpose that more than two centuries ago inspired our nations founding and now must guide us forward. let us act with optimism and without the life -- delay. let us overcome the fallacies of our time. what a signal to the world that in america today the pursuit of a more perfect union lives on. now is not the time to retreat in the face of a partisan assault on the most basic of american rights. the battle to ensure the voting rights of all americans is, i believe, a defining one. this is not only a legal issue, it is also a moral imperative. if we are to be the nation that we claim to be, we must challenge in every way possible those who would undermine our democracy and who have lost faith with the covenant between government and the people. the right to vote is not only the cornerstone of our system of government, it is the lifeblood of our democracy.
i am confident that with a focused citizenry and with leaders like those in the room today, the struggle for right will be won. if we remain true for those who sacrificed for the right to vote, we must not fail. thank you very much. [applause] >> more now on the 2016 election and voting rights with part of a discussion on whether the voting rights act is still necessary. voting identification, fraud, and discrimination. this is from a meeting of the american bar association. >> i'm going to be the dissenter in the room, which i'm sure will make people unhappy. let me say a couple of things -- first of all, the voting rights act is the most important piece of legislation passed in the last century.
frankly, more important than the civil rights act. the voting rights act finally helped and the segregation and lack of political power and strength of black americans. in 1965, when the law was passed blacks were registered at a rate of only about 27% in georgia, mississippi -- less than 7%. by 2004, the election of the year before section five was to expire, in many parts of the southeast covered by section five -- blacks were registering and voting at higher rates than white voters. everyone here has been talking as if the voting rights act has ended. that is simply not the case. the voting rights act has a number of different sections. the most powerful tool against racial discrimination is section two.
it is permanent. it is nationwide. we also have section 11 be, permanent, nationwide. the justice department can go against anyone who is intimidating or threatening or coercing voters. the issue in a shelby county case was one provision of the voting rights act -- section five. section five was originally supposed to be an emergency provision. only supposed to last five years. it only covered a small number of jurisdictions in the country. what was the reason for section five? the reason was the justice department would go to court, they would get a court order against the jurisdiction it was discriminating against black voters. that jurisdiction would basically evade the court decree. the idea was with section five, they would not be able to make any changes in the voting laws without getting the permission of the justice department or a three-judge panel in d.c. the symptom of discrimination going on was, as i said, low
voter registration. congress came up with the coverage formula. if you had less than 50% voter registration or turnout of all donors, not just black voters -- voters, not just black voters. in the 1964 presidential election -- you would be covered. would be renewed section five they added the 64, 68, and 72 elections. after that congress never updated the formula. they didn't do it in 2006 when they were looking at it again. the reason for it was, if they had looked at it not a single state would have been covered \when they renew section five because the systematic, widespread, official
discrimination was happening was ended. in fact, just a couple of things, the black registration and turnout was higher in the covered states than the rest of the country. there were far more black officeholders in the covered states than the rest of the country. the states with the fewest black elected officials, in fact they listed this in the court case were states that had previously not been covered by section five like illinois and delaware. the court was fully justified in saying, history did not stop in 1965. there was no evidence that states like georgia were so different still today from places like massachusetts that georgia needed to be under special protection. the point was, if discrimination occurs, not only can the justice department and private party sue under section two, but they can even get folks under a
preclearance regime. because something that is not often mentioned is section three of the voting rights act. and if you can prove a section to case, you go to the judge and say, judge, we think -- we have evidence this jurisdiction is going to try to evade this decree. we think you should put them under a five-year regime where they have to get an ok from you or from the justice department to make a change in voting rights. the judge can impose it. that is a much more equitable way of putting in a preclearance requirement based on actual evidence in that jurisdiction than a blanket covering of all of these states. shelby county, by the way, alabama county that had filed a suit -- the county government had never had an objection filed in the entire history of the
voting rights act. i want to show you this -- and then i will end. i know you cannot see this map, it is a map of the united states . this is from a 2013 since his report -- census report. see the green areas covering the southeastern united states? those are states where the census bureau says black americans outvoted whites by anywhere from up to 6% more. those are the states where conditions actually our best today. there has been no evidence of section five, a new one needs to be applied. if there is a problem, you can sue under section two and you can get a remedy from a court. >> tom, let me turn to you. one of the lines in the majority opinion in shelby is that the voting rights act imposes significant current burdens, so
it needs to be justified by a showing of current needs. is that not correct? tom: i think the premise that there is a significant burden from preclearance is one that is totally unproven what the court majority in chill county talked about at length was stigma -- shelby county talked about at length with stigma, the quintessential state right case. what was not given due attention are a number of things -- first of all, with respect to the burden of section five preclearance, there was a ready mechanism used by many jurisdictions that could have been used by shelby county. they could've been used by entire states if they could prove that they had complied and not had an objected to change over time, they could bailout. that is what the supreme court in the earlier case. -- rested their decision upon. there was a ready mechanism used by a number of jurisdiction to
get out of the burden of preclearance. let's talk about what the burdens maybe. the main provision of the voting rights act is section two, it does permit the federal government or a private litigant to challenge practices. there are two problems with section two, first is often you have to have the evidence of implementation of the practice to demonstrate a discriminatory effect. that means you have to suffer through a number of elections with folks did not -- denied votes before you have a chance to realistically go into court and have that change overturned first. second, everyone in this room has lawyers -- as lawyers
understand, section two is an inefficient way of adjudicating these matters. since 1982 when congress authorized the reauthorize the voting rights act -- the operative test for prevailing a section to case is quote unquote totality of the circumstance. a lawyer in any area of the law can understand what must be involved in satisfying a totality of the circumstance test. there are experts on both sides. hundreds, if not thousands of hours of lawyer time on both sides. great expense and consumption of time before you have an opportunity to overturn what may be clearly discriminatory change in the electoral process. let me give you an example --shelby while county was being decided, the state of texas had two cases being adjudicated under section five as well as section two. what involved redistricting, the other involved a voter id provision made more draconian. in those cases there was presented tremendous evidence of
not just discredit tory effect, but intentional determination -- discrimination. intentional by the texas legislature to prevent the power of latino and african-american voters from increasing. the judges concluded that that was very strong evidence of intentional determination. as a result of shelby county those cases are today, two years after, still being litigated with those provisions potentially in place. fortunately on redistricting there was a revelation that resulted in new maps. those provisions could be in place, even though judges had concluded there was intentional
discrimination, that is a demonstrable indication of the difference between section two and section five. i will conclude by saying -- lawyers in the room should understand, in addition to being the most effective piece of civil rights legislation ever, the voting rights act in section five had one of the earliest and most effective alternative dispute resolution mechanisms ever put into federal law. that is how we should see it -- see preclearance. it is an efficient and timely, effective way of resulting -- resolving disputes. timeliness is important to prevent those changes from being implemented and having election occur. what if someone's right to vote is denied and an election happens, you cannot unring that bell and do it again if a judge decides that was discriminatory. you have to have a timely mechanism. efficient because all of the preclearance involved was submission of the change and the
data to support the potential effects of the change to the department of justice. the department of justice in a vast majority of cases would approve the change and it would be implemented. that is more cost effective and efficient. >> tom mentioned we have a room full of lawyers. we do have students from the saint rio catholic high school. where are they? we would like to welcome them into the room. [applause] as well as illinois state representative kamala harris is also in the room. [applause]
andrea, let me ask you, what impact has the voting rights act had? is it still important? andrea: of course the voting rights act had significant impact. we had statistics earlier on the increase in the number of people voting and the number of minorities, in particular african-americans, and those in office. i think there are some real things you can understand -- a couple of things i wanted to touch on. the first is -- i want to remind people that this argument around state's rights and the importance of state's writes, how that govern -- how that argument was levered against the civil rights laws. historically it is the idea that balancing states against civil rights -- it is important to
remember the role of the federal government in overcoming that and recognizing there are some things -- particular constitutional protections that have to come from the federal government to balance against state rights. the other thing i think that is really important is when you go -- it troubles me a bit, the argument made that the voting rights act worked -- african-americans are being elected to office. it is the argument behind, look, we haven't african-american president, that is great, we are good now -- we have an american -- african american president, that is great, we are good now. the idea that we do not need those protections is that false understanding. we are good because we have those protections because we have preclearance. the immediate shelby response to , -- the immediate response to shelby with state immediately pursuing restrictive voter id laws would indicate to you that
the protections of the preclearance reviews were critically important. the other thing people need to remember is that -- about the voting restrictions that preceded the voting rights act -- the voting rights act recognized that voting is a very local activity. the restriction of voting is a very local activity. congresswoman waters touched on it, but the idea is, you pass the law, you say, great, we will have voting rights. at a local level there is a lot of opportunity to restrict voting rights. that is why we put in preclearance to say, forget it, you can't change it because we cannot get to every single one of the thousands of jurisdictions where you could be discriminating. we're not going to allow you to change it.
it is that protection that we are missing because -- as tom pointed out, we all know them as lawyers, particularly the gators, litigation takes a long time. while that litigation is happening, elections are occurring where rights are being limited. >> bringing what i think is a quote that justice ginsburg said, if you have a number alone in the rain -- an umbrella in the rain and it is keeping you dry, it is not the time to close the umbrella. >> the point is if you're going to say a certain number of states have to be under federal supervision, then you have to provide evidence of current systematic, widespread discrimination was justified -- that has not been shown. let's talk about voter id. it is a myth that this all occurred after the shelby county decision. i will remind people that the
georgia voter id law was passed in 2005. indiana's was passed after that. georgia's law has been in place since the 2008 election. indiana's has been in place since 2008. they have had election after election. the data on georgia, a large african-american population, 30% shows that after the voter id law went in place, the turnout of black voters and hispanic voters went up dramatically. it went up at a higher rate than the turnout of white voters. same thing happened in the 2010 election. in 2008, when indiana's voter id law was in place for the first time, in place because their case went to the supreme court.
it was upheld by the court. it was 6-3. justice stevens was a liberal. barack obama won indiana with her photo id law in place. first democrat to win the state since the 1964 election. folks have also complained about cutbacks in early voting. first of all, a large number of states do not have early voting. new york does not have it. on friday, he probably know, it was the last day of the trial in north carolina, over the fact that they had changed their early voting days from 17 to 10, although they had the same number of hours. the justice department had trouble because they had put experts on -- more than a year ago when they tried to get a terrific estuary restraining order to keep that change from being in place for the 2014 midterm elections for the primary general, they had experts in place who said, if this early floating -- early voting is in place, the turnout
of voters that are black will go down because -- the expert said -- i find unbelievable that somebody from the justice department would say this because they said quote that black voters were less sophisticated voters" it is less likely to imagine these voters can figure out how to avail themselves of other forms of registering and voting. i find that to be the most patronizing and frankly bigoted attitude. the cutback in early voting times was in effect for the may primary and north carolina and the general election. in the may primary black turnout went up 30% over the 2010 primary, when that change was not there, the white turnout went up 14%. in the general election, the black share of the vote went from 38.5% in 2010 to 41.1% in
the election. in a general election, remember the midterm congressional election last year, turnout was down all across the country. it went down all across from the primary -- prior midterm. one of the only states where turnout went up with north carolina, where the suppose was predicted. changes in early voting don't keep you from voting. in fact, the university from wisconsin a professor just put out a study and the conclusion was counterintuitive, that it hurts turnout. they concluded it made decrease
turnout from 3-4%. the reason being the campaign spent the majority on get out the voters. if they have to spread the money out over a two-week, three-week, four-week time, it is not as intense and effective in people who normally would not vote on election day keep saying, i can vote tomorrow, i can put the next day independently it is enough to hurt turnout by a small percentage. it is not me saying this, this is a study at the university of wisconsin and a number of other studies. >> mark, let me respond. apparently voter id restrictions are measures to increase turnout. [laughter] >> i did not say that.
>> just one second, just one second. >> opponents have said -- >> you are employing that here and elsewhere. >> since the supreme court action in 2013, stricter voting laws i been passed in alabama, arizona, georgia, mississippi, texas, in virginia. some states have been challenged on that and overturned some of the state laws. for example, new york times correspondent headline said, texas agrees to soften voter id law after court order. what exactly took place? >> that was a prolonged fight over a law in texas like many others that required voters to produce specific id to cast a ballot. this has been up into down the courts and in the most recent decision the u.s. court of
appeals decided this law was discriminatory. there needed to be greater opportunities for people who had trouble getting these identifications to obtain them. there have been meetings between the plaintiff voting rights advocate and the state into they came to an agreement which effectively ended the photo id law and allowed anybody who has difficulty in getting an id to secure a vote by signing an affidavit of the polling place and they could not reasonably obtain one of the document so that was a good change. >> and north carolina scored struck down a law and in the court argument one of the judges questioned the intent of the voting laws. here's a couple minutes of that. >> all of this rhetoric.
in african american registration continues. the laws changed and they claimed that it was adversely affected. to protect your own political interests. it means in this case republican party got control of the house and the senate and the governorship and the opportunity changed those pretty liberal voter registration provisions and half of them saying they would be decided. purposeful discrimination. >> i can persuade you it was not a nefarious thing.
certainly the judge found it was not. there is a couple premises in your questions then i have to challenge. a correlation between same-day registration and 17-day out of precinct voting and registration and the increase in the lack registration or participation rate during the 2008 and 2012 election. now, i remember being at a trial with experts from m.i.t. and harvard and every university in the country and they did what is called a cross-state analysis where they give opinions on whether election practices have a qualitative increase in turnout or registration. none of them at the plenary junction stage, none of them had done a cross-state analysis to
try to determine whether these practices had caused an increase in turnout at registration in and they were put on notice that there was evidence that there were states like north carolina, virginia where the black turnout registration numbers went up at equivalent rates and virginia did not have same-day registration, out of precinct voting, and 7-day. so at the preliminary injunction stage, they had failed to give a link between these repeal practices and to be increase in participation by african americans. >> you can listen to the entire fourth circuit argument at c-span.org.
michael of the "new york times," what occurred in north carolina since that court ruling? michael: that was a remarkable ruling, in that it not only said north carolina's voter id law and other changes had eight discriminatory impact, but that they actually were intended to disenfranchise certain blocks of voters and that is a very unusual and very strong ruling. since then, the state board of elections has handed down some rules for local election boards on how they should restructure their voting in order to comply with the appeals court decision and that has not always gone well. in one of the first meetings on a local level in guilford county, north carolina, the voting board actually, in the view of many critics, tried to make an end run around the appeals court, doing things like cutting back on sunday voting. sunday voting is broadly used by minority groups. blacks who go to churches, they go to church and then a bus picks you up so you can exercise your constitutional right to
vote. by cutting back on sunday voting, it was just one example that limits the opportunities of minorities to vote, or so the critics would say. in that county and others, there has been a large outcry by citizens. some of these meetings on voting rules were absolutely packed. in the case of guilford, many of those efforts to place new restrictions on voting were withdrawn. >> michael wines of "new york times," thank you for joining us. here's more about recent changes to voter id laws. >> she joins us to discuss voter identification rules.
how many states are trying to impose more stringent rules this cycle? where could voters see this? jennifer: in fact, there are 15 states in which voters when they go to the polls this november will be facing new restrictions for the first time in a presidential election. those 15 states are part of a larger trend since 2010 where we see voters in about 21 states, almost half the country, are facing new restrictions over the past five or six years. host: are they the same kind of voter identification rules? or are some more stringent than others, where voters could see them in november? jennifer: there is a range. some of them are voter id laws as you have identified. the ones that are truly concerning are what are often referred to as strict voter id laws. under those types of laws, voters can show only one of a
very small number of government-issued photo identification documents to vote. if they do not have anyone of those documents, they are out of luck. they oftentimes cannot cast a ballot that counts. we have seen states such as texas and wisconsin, over the past few years, attempt to put those kind of strict photo id laws into place. in addition to voter identification restrictions, we're seeing different kinds of restrictions. cutbacks on early voting opportunities. elimination of the opportunity to register to vote and vote in one trip, which is referred to as same-day registration, and we have seen things such as making it more difficult for those with prior criminal convictions to get their right to vote restored. it runs the gamut. host: some of the folks trying to roll back some of the
restrictions have seen several victories in recent court rulings. can you walk us through for those who may not have seen the stories in recent weeks? jennifer: sure. you're right. in the past couple weeks, we had really seen courts stepping in to protect the right to vote in advance of this november's election. one of the state i have already mentioned is texas. texas passed a strict photo id law in 2011, it was blocked by one court and it went through a very long litigation process to end up where we are today, which is that two weeks ago, the fifth circuit court of appeals, a federal appellate court, said the texas law discriminated on the basis of race. it has a disproportionate impact on voters who are african-american and latino in texas and so texas will not be able to enforce its law as written this november. in fact, voters need to have an opportunity to cast a ballot with other types of
identification that are not one of those limited number of photo ids from the government i talked about. in addition to texas, we have seen some pushback in wisconsin, where we had seen two court cases over the past couple of weeks. one is somewhat similar to the texas decision in effect, in that voters without photo identification will have to be given another opportunity to cast a ballot this november and into the future. and, we have also seen some in wisconsin against restriction against early voting opportunity there. wisconsin passed a law making it harder for municipalities to offer early voting. in addition to those states, we saw a big victory against restrictions in north carolina, where about a week and a half
ago, there was another federal appellate court that issued an opinion, saying north carolina's omnibus restriction law which was passed a few years back and included photo identification to vote, restrictions on early voting and same-day registration, and a bunch of other restrictions, that federal courts said that law was passed with the intent to discriminate against minority voters in north carolina. so, that law has also been wiped off the books although north carolina has said they are going to take that up to the supreme court. in addition to those, we have also seen a court in north dakota say that that state cannot enforce its photo id law, and there was also a litigation victory in kansas. in kansas, there has been a concerted effort to push forward documentary proof of citizen requirement, which many voters did not show when they register to vote so they are being taken off the rolls. a court recently said at least in part, those voters have to be given the opportunity to vote.
there has been a lot of court decisions in the past couple weeks that really push back on these restrictions. >> for those who are more visual learners, a map of where the major legislation that can impact voter access is taking place. the light blue states, where there were recent litigation victories, and the dark blue states, where challenges to restrictive voter laws are taking place. remind us what the brennan center is.
jennifer: the brennan center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan law and policy institute. we are housed at nyu's school of law. we were founded to defend the two pillars on which our country was built, democracy and justice. in addition to work in voting, we do work in other areas such as justice reform. responses to liberty and national security issues. host: have you have been involved in these various litigation efforts that you were just talking about? jennifer: yes. we are attorneys for some clients in the texas case that i talked about. in the other cases, we have not actively participated in litigations. we have filed amicus briefs and -- i serve as one of the plaintiffs attorney in the texas case i talked about. host: susie, good morning. alabama.m, a democrat.
caller: a few things when you buy to present id -- cigarettes, alcohol, to apply for welfare, food stamps, apply for medicaid, social security, unemployment. to rent or buy a house. to drive or buy a car. to get on an airplane, get married, purchase a gun, adopt a pet, and on and on. so what is wrong with when we vote which is an important thing, to present photo id? i do not see the problem. host: thank you for the question. jennifer? jennifer: sure. you're right. voting is an incredibly important thing and people should have to be able to prove that they are who they say they are. i think everybody agrees that electoral integrity is of the utmost importance. i think everyone is on the same page with that. the problem with the types of laws i was talking about, the strict photo identification
laws, comes in the strict photo identification part. there are a large number of americans who simply do not have those id's. a lot of them do not board airplanes or do some of the other things you mentioned. they are not homeowners. or they are able to use other types of photo identification that is not accepted under these laws. for example, in texas, you can not use a drivers license from another state to cast a ballot. you cannot use a drivers license that is expired more than 60 days. those things were true under the strict version of the law that courts have said texas cannot use for this november's election. but up until that was issued, those are types of ids many people use for things you talked about. in the litigation, we ran into a lot of people, particularly older people, who did have identification but it expired five or six years ago because they do not drive anymore so they had no need to renew their
driver's license but they kept their expired driver's license or they could show it when they needed to. but, that was not an id they could use to vote in texas. those people who spoke at the trial were not alone. there were multiple experts who did statistical analyses of voters in texas and found that over 600,000 registered voters in texas did not have one of the ids that you can use to vote under the law. so, that is a sizable portion of the electorate simply being blocked out because they do not have the id. so, proving you who you say you are can be done in other ways that does not disenfranchise people.
host: john, you are on with jennifer clarke. caller: i have a commented at the end i have a question. the brennan center is a far left, quasi-socialistic organization that has always been for the main objective of allowing illegal immigrants to vote. i worked for the government 20 years ago. i saw illegal immigrants and i know this for a fact, i cannot tell you how, but where i worked, there were getting voter registration cards and they were in the country illegally. now, the whole objective of this is to allow anyone to vote whether they are a citizen or noncitizen. if it is a noncitizen, that disenfranchises my vote. when people talk about disenfranchising, i don't care about that 600,000 that are probably half illegal. the woman give you 20 things you have to have for a license -- and the 600,000, really? it does not affect any of them? i have a question -- >> i want to give her a chance to respond.
jennifer: sure so of course the brennan center -- and i don't think anybody else who works in elections thinks people who aren't eligible citizens should be voting. that is the basis of elections in this country is making sure that it is eligible citizens who vote. certainly, that is what i believe and what the brennan center believes. that is the baseline. election integrity is the most important and if folks are not eligible to vote, then they should not be casting a vote. there are plenty of ways other states makes sure that people are who they say they are such as allowing them to provide other forms of identification. not one of a very small limited number that a good percentage of americans do not have. host: john, back to you for your question. caller: illegals have been getting drivers licenses from throughout the united states for a number of years now. just because you have the voter id law does not mean you are a citizen. in florida, all you have to do is check off a box you are a
u.s. citizen. there are no voter police who go out there and verify this information. i know this for a fact because of where i used to work. and back in the 90's, illegal immigrants were getting voter ids. jennifer: sure, so you did point out a disconnect between some of the strict photo id laws, what they are saying and what they actually do. there are many states where people who are not u.s. citizens can get driver's licenses, and it is not because they are doing something wrong. there are people here on a green card who can get driver's licenses and there are plenty of folks who are not u.s. citizens who get driver's licenses and are licensed to drive. there is nothing intrinsic about showing a piece of identification that proves that you are in fact a u.s. citizen. what does prove that you are a u.s. citizen is that when you register to vote, you have to swear you are a u.s. citizen and the penalty for that is quite severe.
in fact, there are some prosecutions of people who ended up registering and often times you get election officials talking about what they see and oftentimes people make a mistake. they think because they got handed a voter registration pamphlet, perhaps with their application for a drivers license, they think they are able to register to vote and they end up on the voting rolls. there are protections, and if that is something you saw during your time in government, many of those people have been detected and many times it is a simple innocent misunderstanding. host: are there statistics on that and how often does voter
fraud happen per election cycle? jennifer: there are statistics on that. it is important to think about what we're talking about when we say voter fraud. it gets used as an umbrella term. to break it down, for example, the type of voter fraud that gets stopped by something like the texas law is called in-person impersonation fraud. i go to the polls and pretend to be somebody else. that type of fraud is very rare. there are numbers on it. we have a few studies on it. one is a study that was published in the "washington post," where there was an extensive look and they found 31 credible instances of this type of in-person impersonation fraud between 2000 and 2014. that is out of about one billion ballots cast. 31 instances. that is an infinitesimally small number. in the texas case, when texas passed its strict voter id law, the legislature had evidence before it that between 2000 and 2010, there were two instances of this kind of in-person impersonation fraud and that us out of millions of ballots cast in texas at that time.
that type of fraud is incredibly rare. when it does happen, people get caught. there's a reason it is rare. it is not a very good way to have an outcome on the election to vote as another person. it doesn't really have that much of an effect and the penalties are very severe. tens of thousands of dollars in fines and potential jail time. host: from maryland, a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. a couple things. the first lady was very articulate. add to the list of things that it is my understanding that you need id for, obamacare. i find it very difficult to believe that in this day and age, there are people who do not have voter id, and i am very disappointed that i feel like my vote is being discounted because of a lot of the nonsense going
on. thank you very much. host: jennifer clarke, any response? jennifer: sure. certainly, there is nothing wrong with having people prove they are who they say they are. a useful distinction between what texas had on the books before this court decision came out, which allowed you to use one of seven pieces of voter id, which a good number of taxes did not have, versus what they will put in place for this election after the court decision came down saying that law was racially discriminatory. so under the new proposal, you can use a paycheck that has your name and address, you can use another government document that your name and address. you can use something called a voter registration certificate, which is something texas
actually mails to people when they register to vote. it comes to them at the address they put on the voter registration, so if they have it, it means they live at that address and they got it. that is a much broader range of documents. people have those documents and allowing them to show them at the polls means that their voices will count. the caller expressed a dismay at the feeling that your vote does not count and that was a very real thing for these people who did not have one of the small number of id's texas required. we heard them testify on the stand at trial about how they attempted over and over again to use the documents they did have to get one of the acceptable identifications and they failed because they did not have the money that they needed, because they ran into trouble with transportation, or perhaps they had a mistake in one of their underlying documents. their name is spelled one way
here and another way there, they weren't able to reconcile and it put them in this loop where they could not get one of the very small numbers of voter identifications and that made them feel their voices did not count. it is about making sure every eligible citizen can vote. host: a lot of viewers waiting to talk to you. we will try to move them as fast as they can in our last 20 minutes or so in this segment. a democrat. good morning. caller: yes. a quick comment. people have died and given their lives so that we can all vote. i think it is something we need to hold as a precious jewel and treasure. people should have the proper identifications to be able to vote and government should not pass laws to try to suppress people from voting. our vote is all that we have and we should exercise that. states that pass these hard laws to stop people from voting are doing a disservice to their constituents, to the people who live in the state.
host: what do you consider a hard law? what is too much, in your opinion? caller: in florida, restoration of criminal rights to vote after they have served time. they should have an opportunity and the right to be put back into society and exercise a right to vote for whomever they choose, whether it is democrat, republican, or independent. i don't think they should be cast out anymore but should be brought into the fold. jennifer: so, the caller has identified florida as a state where it is particularly difficult for people with prior criminal convictions to get the right to vote restored. that is true.
it is one of only three states in the country where you are facing potential lifetime disenfranchisement. the right to vote is incredibly important. it is a right and responsibility. we are seeing that states are doing a lot of things to increase turnout to try to make ]increase turnout to try to make it more likely people will be invested in their democracy. it is a shame to see those efforts undercut and see some states doing quite the opposite, which is making it much more difficult for certain segments of the population, which you have seen in the court decisions in the past couple week, disproportionally tend to be minority voters to make it harder for those people to vote. host: adam is an independent. good morning. caller: in the texas case in particular, the seven forms of identification required, what are they, and are there mechanisms in place for people to get those forms of identification?
in pennsylvania, if you are a non-driver, you can get a non-driver id. i am sure that is the case in a lot of other states, including county id. jennifer: under the texas law that was recently, at least as it was written on the books, struck down by the court, the types of photo identification that were allowed under that law were a texas driver's license, a texas non-driver's license, a state photo id, which is what i think the caller was talking about, where you go to the department of motor vehicles and if you do not drive you get a state id, you still have to pay for that id. also, a u.s. passport was accepted, and about three other
documents with identifications and a photo on it. texas did create something called an election identification certificate, which was a card that had a photo identification on it used for voting purposes only and that was supposed to be the cost-free alternative for people who did not have any one of these ids. however, you needed a birth certificate and other documentation in order to get that, and what we saw was people do not have the original or certified copy of their birth certificate anymore. these were primarily people who were older and had moved around a lot and lost that document or perhaps had been born outside of a hospital setting and did not have that document to begin with. so, although there was a free voter id provided, getting it wasn't free and that ended up being a problem for people and texas did not make a lot of effort to get id in those people's hands. other states, there was more of an effort. the caller specifically mentioned the idea of using county ids and things issued at the local level.
in new york city, there is a new york city id where the city made a big push to get the ids in people's hands. under the texas law, they did not allow any government issued documents except for the ones i already mentioned. if you had a county id with your picture, if you were a government employee and you had in employee id with your picture on it, you could not use it. host: robert is a republican. you are on with jennifer of the brennan center. caller: first, i would like to say that the brennan center is not nonpartisan. it has never supported a conservative cause. second, 40% of california driver licenses last year were given to illegals. now, if you can get a driver's license and you are an illegal born in a foreign country with limited ability to speak
english, no birth certificate, how difficult is it for someone who was born here and has a birth certificate? the other point is, in alabama, you have to have a photo id. if you do not have one, the state will come to your house and issue one free. you must provide proof of citizenship in order to register to vote in the first place. jennifer: the first comment, the brennan center is nonpartisan. we do not support conservative causes or liberal causes or any cause attached to a particular party. in my time there, i have worked with republican legislators and democratic legislators and legislators who are independent or of other third parties. this is not about partisanship in any way. the idea that we all go to the
polls if we're eligible citizens and we vote for whoever it is that we support, that is fundamental and it crosses party lines. every elected official who was put there by voters should feel very passionately about making sure that all eligible citizens can vote. i cannot believe that feeling is actually a partisan feeling one way or the other. it is about the fundamental right to vote. host: have you worked with mark ilias before? jennifer: i have not. i do know he is bringing some lawsuits, but i do not know him and have not worked with him. host: i bring it up -- the "washington post" today has a front-page story calling him a go-to lawyer for democrats. he is now taking a somewhat controversial place among the coalition of groups challenging a wave of state election laws rewritten in recent years.
his efforts explicitly on behalf 2016mocrats have made quite different, besides joining the efforts of civil rights groups, he has also made efforts in states that are important to hillary clinton's campaign and the future democratic candidates. the question is, does his work in this area concern a group like yours that is nonpartisan and trying to work on this in a nonpartisan way? jennifer: i think these fights should be kept nonpartisan to the extent possible. i think that is very important. the idea that there are more holes that people need to step in and fill with litigation is not shocking. what we saw this in 2013 the supreme court in a decision called shelby county struck down part of the voting rights act and gutted part of the voting
rights act with teeth. it made it much easier for states that have a history of discrimination at the ballot box to pass laws such as the one in texas, the one in north carolina, the one in virginia, and elsewhere, to make it harder for people to vote. so, now that we do not have the full protection of the voting rights act and it is the first election in 50 years without those protections, we have seen an uptick in the number of states passing restrictive laws and so, of course as we see those laws go up in number, it certainly makes sense that more lawyers are coming to the table because there are more people reaching out because they have lost the right to vote. it is not surprising people are stepping in to fill the void. what should happen is that the congress should restore the voting rights act to its former power and pass a voting rights amendment act which the brennan center and others have been working on with bipartisan support for the past few years.
host: victoria's waiting on the line for democrats. caller: good morning. i tuned in a little bit ago. i don't know if you mentioned -- we have been voting by mail for years out here, for all of our elections, local and national. now we have the motor voter law and people have to provide a lot of documentation when they go to the department of motor vehicles and they can register there, and it is an unaffiliated registration if they choose not to affiliate with anyone. as far as i know, you get a voter pamphlet for every election so you can really read up on the issues. national,'s local or
biographies. it is so easy for people, especially in the rural areas. why doesn't every state do something like that and make it easy? jennifer: you mentioned a new initiative in oregon which goes by the new motor voter law. it is actually a form of automatic registration in which eligible citizens who interact with eligible agencies get registered to vote unless they say they don't want to. currently, the default in many states is that the voter has to take the initiative to get registered to vote and a lot of people end up falling through the cracks as many states a very long registration deadlines and people simply miss the opportunity to get registered to vote. so you mentioned, why isn't everybody making it easier for people? that is a great example of a state trying to make it easier for people to get registered and participate. in the first few months of the implementation of this automatic voter registration program, oregon has seen not only the registration rolls jump up,
where more and more eligible citizens are getting put on the rolls, but they have also seen turnout jump up among those turnout jump up among those people who were automatically registered. so that is a great example of a state making it easier rather rather than more difficult for people to get into the process. host: pleasanton. california, grace is waiting. republican. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. the reason i call as i work for reason i called is i work and saw what happened in election years. i saw our representatives giving
out registration forms and having illegals fill them out. they would fill out the voter information so that these people that didn't know how to speak or write english would vote for the right people. how do you stop that? jennifer: certainly, people who are not eligible to vote should not be registering to vote. if there is somebody that is perpetrating that, that is something that should be reported, certainly. i do not think any of us want to stand for that kind of fraud being perpetrated, so i would encourage people who actually see something like that happening to reach out to elected officials and let them know what is going on. however, that is not a widespread problem. the studies that have been done looking at instances of different types of voter fraud often include instances of folks who are not eligible citizens who end up on the voting rolls. a lot of times that is a mistake. they think because they are allowed to get a driver's license that means they are allowed to vote, and they had up on the rolls because there is confusion. many times, they do not attempt
to vote. that is something that does in fact happen sometimes, and those people, often, the mistake is brought to their attention and they are taken of the roles but that is also not a widespread problem. there is a study out of arizona where they looked at instances from 2000 two 2012 of voter fraud, and they used that term very largely. another part of it was looking fraud.rsonation another part of it was looking at in eligible people ending up on the roles. they found that it happened, but they found that out of one million ballots cast over that time, that the number was below 1000. so it does happen, but is a small problem compared to the number of votes cast overall, and certainly, every effort should be made so that people are not accidentally signing up for something they are not eligible to sign up for.
host: helen is in maryland. a democrat. caller: good morning. thank you cspan for taking my call. my mom and most of my family live in alabama and florida. there were some things that took place in alabama last year where they shut down most of the mva where people could not go in to even get to the building and make their vote at all. my mom right now is still alive and doing very well. she is 91 years old, she has always voted when she got the opportunity. but now with all these restrictions, people do not understand that a 91-year-old woman brought into the world by
a midwife is not going to have a birth certificate, but she is still a citizen of this country. we should make it easier for people to vote. the biggest violations are the ones who are making it difficult for people not to vote. my last opinion on this is, in the workforce in alabama, where a lot of my family work, their hours are shifted on voting days where they cannot get in there within the hours allotted for voting. some of my family members are also told not to vote. so, when their days off are saturdays and sundays, a lot of those days were shut down, too. what is your organization -- or is your organization looking at these instances? jennifer: sure.
you mentioned alabama specifically, where your family lives, and there is a lawsuit ongoing in alabama right now to push back against the photo id law. it does not look like we are going to have a decision before this november, but there is an ongoing lawsuit there. because, as you mention, alabama is one of the states that has recently made it harder for citizens to vote despite the fact there are people without the id you need to vote in alabama. you talk about your mother and it is wonderful that she still cares so passionately about her right and responsibility to vote at 91 years old. that is wonderful to hear. in the trial in texas, we saw a lot of people exactly like her, who were born 80 plus years ago. many times, particularly if they were african-american citizens, they were not born in a hospital. plenty of them were born in places where hospitals would not take african-american women to give birth at the time. they were born at home with a midwife and never got the documentation they needed, but
they were born in the united states. and those people have worked very hard to get the id they need and still oftentimes have come up short. we saw a woman in texas who had to save $42 to get her out of state birth certificate. she had to mail an application for the birth certificate and pay to get it printed and mailed back, and that cost $42. her and her husband live on a fixed income. i think he is a bus driver. they live on in income of $300 a month and are feeding a family on that. they saved for about six months to put money aside in an attempt to get her a birth certificate. they eventually did. the cost of voting should not be so high for people who are eligible citizens and simply want to use the same rights they have been using since they were 18 or 21 years old.
host: richmond, indiana. an independent. caller: hello. thank you so much and thank you c-span for having such a great public service. i would like to speak with ms. clark about the federal prison system and the state prison system. i did some work with a sheriff in jackson county kentucky. i would like to let her know about something that she might want to look into, and that is the candidate id numbers. just to make sure they have not been compromised. those candidate id numbers, back in 2014, were tied directly to unverified illegal immigrants in the federal prison system. we could not get voter id, so he had me count. those candidate id numbers were
tied, every one of them, to unverified illegal immigrants in arizona federal prisons. host: this is something you have looked into? jennifer: it is not something i've looked into or heard of. again, i would really urge callers who have truly first-hand seen something like that to reach out to their local election officials, because local election officials are very invested in the system and truly want those who are eligible to vote to be able to vote and want to make sure the electoral process is secure. because, that is their job. i cannot speak to that incident, but i think your local election officials are a wonderful resource if you need to ask a question of somebody or if you have firsthand experience of a concern about electoral integrity. host: helen is a republican.
good morning. caller: good morning. i enjoy your program. my opinion is that because there are so many states that have so many different issues regarding id verification, regards to voting, my suggestion is every four years, when the presidential election is up for grabs, that the people in each state submit certain issues, problems regarding id verification issues, to be put on the ballot. and once the elections are over and the various issues from all the states are combined and put on the ballot, people go through them. every state has the same issue basically the different issues in depth. that way, all the people throughout the whole united
states could vote on them, like once they get there retribution back from the governor -- everybody should be able to vote. legislatively, it would take 20, 30, 40 years, because every state, again, has the same state, again, has the same issues but they are inherently different. vote on it once and for all. in the meantime, work with your legislators. work with somebody. host: jennifer clarke, the last 30 seconds. jennifer: states actually have the power to set qualifications for voting in each individual state. that is something that, under our constitution, they are given authority over, so that is why it has to be decided on a state-by-state basis. however, that authority is blocked in by things like the voting rights act and the constitution.
you cannot have qualifications that are unconstitutional or violate people's voting rights under federal protection such as the voting rights act. that is the lawsuit that we are seeing now. states have crossed the line and that are going to far in restricting the ability of who can vote. host: jennifer clarke is a council at the brennan center for justice. thank you so much for your time this morning. >> we invite you to watch all of the oral arguments and programs in this issue spotlight on the precinct election and voting rights in their entirety. our video library at c-span.org. announcer: here is some of what we are covering today on c-span. at gun violence and police response. later, a discussion about the british vote to leave the european union and what the expecting to do
next. live coverage from the heritage foundation in washington at 1:00 p.m. eastern. q&a -- y night on psychological device. because if you are black, you were afraid things could happen. announcer: talking about his literary career, including his latest career. the killing of michael mcdonald in alabama. >> he is a teenager, trained to become a thick layer. youngest of seven children. home of his mother in their house and his aunt wants him to go get a pack of cigarettes. gives him a dollar, puts it and his wallet, goes out. up behind him, a
man orders him into the backseat of the car in he knows when he gets in the car what is going to happen. black man in alabama, you know. announcer: that is sunday night on c-span q&a. announcer: c-span, created by america's cable television companies and brought to buy you your cable or satellite provider. space cap was launched in a mission to observe more planets. the mission director recently gave an update on the first discovery on the jet propulsion lab in california. this is a one hour in 35 minutes. >> hello everyone. my name is daisy hill. welcome to our lecture. this is an event to learn more about our mission, and get up close and personal with our
scientists and engineers. those are the folks that do all the hard work, and you can speak to them personally. before we get started, a couple things to let you know. please, turn off your cell and silence them. two, please wait until the and of the presentation before raising your hand for questions, and if you do have a question, please go over to the microphone and adjust that there so we can hear your question, and we are also recording this, so we want those questions on the recording as well. so let's get started. tonight's spotlight is on nasa's dawn mission, the first space mission to orbit extraterrestrial targets, vesta and the dwarf planet ceres. last month, dawn was awarded the collier trophy, the most prestigious award in aviation
and space. i'm sure you are anxious to hear more about this mission, and who better to talk about it then its chief engineer and director, mark raymond. [applause] >> thank you very much. i appreciate your coming. to everyone watching this at home, sorry you're not getting all the free money handed to people here. [laughter] >> but thank you for your interest, as well. i want to talk about the dawn mission, and as you know it is run by jpl. but there are many organizations in other countries and around the world involved in this project. [laughter] >> before i start telling you
about the dawn mission, i want to give you context. here we are with a conventional view of the solar system from the 1800s, through the orbits of the inner planets, including earth, mars, jupiter, saturn, and uranus. apart from an occasional comment -- comet and some moons, this is what astronomers knew about the solar system in 1800. and this was a very modern picture because uranus had only been discovered in 1781. so it could not have been drawn earlier. the planets of course from mercury to saturn were known even to ancient astronomers. this was a modern view in 1800. for fun, although this is an arrangement of the solar system, or the contents of the solar system as they were known then.
showing you the locations of the planets today. on this very day. that is why, if you imagine being here on earth, and earth rotating this way, you can see just after the sun has gone down, mercury and venus are near the sun. and maybe you can barely just catch a glimpse of them now. it in the next few weeks, it will be even easier. but you can also see jupiter, mars, and saturn on the evening sky. when you leave this evening, mars and saturn will be very nicely positioned with the moon between them. so mars will be below and to the right of the moon and saturn below and to the left of the moon. for those of you watching this and are according, it will change that quickly, so you can see it in the coming days. and fact, even tomorrow the moon
will be nicely positioned. this is what astronomers knew in 1800. then came along piazzi, he discovered a new planet. modern astronomers had only ever discovered one planet. so this was quite a significant finding. i am going to show you a high resolution photograph of what he discovered. this is the roman goddess of agriculture and grain, ceres. she is often depicted with her crown of grains. in this case, the artist has chosen to depict her with a s cythe. different artists have used different implements, in fact, if you had cereal this morning, you have at least some etymological connection with the good goddess.
and here is the same chart i showed you a moment ago, but planets in 1800. and here is how they were known in 1801. fit nicely between mars jupiter, and it was considered to be a planet. so that makes a nice story and happens to be true. then along comes of this fellow, trained as a physician, but was a fantastically productive astronomer. he made many, many important contributions to astronomy, which are of value even today. but in 1802 he discovered another new body between mars and jupiter. but more importantly for the which i went to describe to you this evening, evening,in 1807 he discovered the fourth new member of the solar system family. i will show you a high resolution of what the good doctor discovered.
she is here, vesta, the goddess of hearth, home, and family. vesta is not as well understood as many other figures in classical mythology. the reason for that is, she was worshiped privately in the home. and so there are fewer surviving records of exactly how she figured into roman mythology. you have perhaps heard of the vestal virgins, that refers -- but i am referring specifically to the goddess vesta herself. when she is referred to in art, she often has a very stern look on her face. one of the things i hope to convince you of, is that the solar system vesta is a much happier place. that is what he discovered. and here is the same picture i showed you earlier, but i have zoomed in so that jupiter at the outermost planet. you can see vesta, like ceres,
fits nicely into this gap between mars and jupiter. for around two generations, it was considered to be a planet. in fact, if you would gone to a lecture 200 years ago, and i don't know how many of you did -- [laughter] >> you can identify yourselves later -- there would have been two different things about you. your home internet connection would have been a slower, problematic for people watching on their laptops, at the other thing is you would have learned in school that these were planets, because that is how they were known then. but science and technology advanced, and by the middle of the 19th century, more and more and more bodies started to be discovered in this part of the solar system until now, it looks more like this. i will invite the people in the front row to confirm later on for those of you in the back
that i have added thousands of individual dots to show you the location of this number of asteroids today. and we know about many more. i am only showing you the ones that are larger than five miles or so across. because if i showed you all of them, this would be nothing but that -- but an uninterpretable, yellow-green mass. but the point is to show you that this part of the solar system, which we call the main asteroid belt, is very different from the inner solar system, and from the outer solar system. that raises the question, why is that? why is this part of the story different? to answer that i have to take you back in time a little bit
discovery of01 series. and fact, i have to take you to eight different part of the solar system. get it? i am telling you about the dawn mission. more clearly there is something different about this part of the solar system, both from the inner solar system and the outer solar system. that raises the question, why? why is this part of the solar system different? >> the light of the star is so intense that as it shines down on this interstellar cloud of gas and dust, it is blowing the material away. almost all of it is operating in interstellar space.
however, right here there is a knot of material so dense that it is blocking the light of the star and preventing it from blowing away the material behind it. that is why this material is sticking here, sticking out like a finger from the cloud. essentially, it is in the shadow of this dense material. deep inside here, the material is growing so dense it is collapsing under its own weight, and eventually, it will collapse to form a star. that is how our star, the sun, formed 4.6 billion years ago. once you form a star, you can begin to form planets because now you have a swirling cloud of debris with material flying around. sometimes these particles will hit, and break apart. other times, when they hit, they will stick together. we can see that happening with this particle here. in date another particle hits
that. and another particle and another particle. gradually, these grow larger and larger. on the slide, they grow larger to form words. but in space, they grow larger to form rocks. and these rocks form so large, they have enough gravity to pull in more material and then they form planets. and that is how the rocky planets of the inner solar system, one of which is right under our feet, formed about 4.6 billion years ago. however, when massive jupiter formed, its gravity was so intense that it interrupted this process and deprived material nearby of the opportunity to continue growing to become full - sized planets. and so ceres and vesta are sometimes called protoplanetary remnants, or simply proto-planets because they were growing to become full sized planets when jupiter cut their growth off.
and, dawn's mission is to fly to the asteroid belt and study these objects. so, let's summarize the scientific motivation for the mission, we wanted to explore ceres and vesta to get insights into physical conditions and processes that were acting at the dawn of the solar system. because we believe these bodies retain retrievable records as to what was going on while planets were building. and these things almost made it to full-sized lannett status. now, most people think of asteroids and think of chips of rock the size of mountains. but ceres and vesta are different from that. so we can put it into context by showing what we have a visited prior to the dawn mission. and two of them are so small i had to put boxes around it to
convince you something is there. compared to vesta. and when we introduce ceres, you can see that ceres and vesta are different, nothing like these little chips of rock that are asteroids. vesta with an equatorial diameter of 350 miles, and ceres nearly 600 miles in diameter. compared with two of the large bodies, lutetia, they flew by a -- a european spacecraft flew by lutetia six years ago, and mathilde, the largest the u.s. visited. and, i have exaggerated the side -- the size of mathilde. so that you
that shows us that vesta and ceres are nothing like asteroids, and are closer to other solar system objects you are familiar with. i'm sure you remember in 2006 when the astronaut union created a new category of solar system bodies, dwarf planets. and all my goodness, how good or -- how could earth be such an inner planets or -- interplanetary only, and not think of pluto's feelings -- how insensitive. when that system was created, pluto was the second object to be discovered to fit into that category. ceres was discovered 129 years earlier. it was the first one discovered to be a dwarf planet. what this shows me, vesta and ceres are not just pieces of rock, these are big places, worlds. what is so cool about this now for mission is that we are truly exploring unchartered words -- worlds in the solar system.
and what could be cooler than that? these are the two largest unexplored worlds in the solar system. i think that is really neat. when you look at a picture like this and compare it with california, it is deceptive because california is flat and these are round, three-dimensional bodies. they have much more surface area than is suggested in a picture like this. vesta has twice the area of california. we can go into the third dimension and compare that of ceres with the united states. and sure it is not as big as the united states or earth, but it is a big place to read it is it is 37% of the area of the contiguous united states. when you think about how vast and varied and beautiful the geography and topology, it offers a lot of diversity.
a lot of different things to see in a place like this. i should also point out, in the interest of being clear, obviously this is not the correct color of the united states. this is what scientists call a false color because it encodes other scientific information. the same thing for ceres here, this is not how it would appear to your eye. this is the surface of ceres, drawn to the same scale. now, let's take a look at this now, let's take a look at this mysterious, alien world that dawn has unveiled. from my perspective, i will show you it is getting saturated. but there was a great deal of variety at the surface. one thing that really stands out, many of these bright features like this one right here. this is one of our photographs of this mysterious crater with these bright features just a
glowing out. to me, this really just looks like these mesmerizing lights shining out into the cosmos, guiding the way for a spaceship from earth, inviting it to go in for a closer look. and that is exactly what we have done. i should also say, could these be the lights of an alien city? as we're sending spacecraft to the ceres, how do you know that cerians live in cities? they could live underground. those kind of questions do not
respect the way that we advance our knowledge. not know how well you can see it in this depiction, but in addition to the complex shape of the distribution of this material, i hope you can see there are many fractures and the surface. which i will come back to in a moment. but this picture we just got not wn's long ago from da lowest altitude orbit, and i will tell you more about what we now understand to be going on, m, let's have running here for you this and other sites on creeres and i'll add the diameter of what we're looking at, all of the features on ceres are named for de agricultural or
festivals associated with agriculture. what we think has happened in in crater 57 miles diameter, 80 million years ago, an asteroid slammed into the surface of ceres and excavated this crater. underground, there were saltwater. think of this. on this alien world, saltwater underground, perhaps frozen, perhaps liquid. but it made its way to the surface and the cold vacuum of space on the surface it would freeze and sublimate, transform from being solid to gas. that means the water molecules depart, but they would leave behind the salt that was dissolved in that saltwater. the bright features in jkoccator thesesewhere on ceres,
bright features are salt that are left over from the sublimation of the sub surface saltwater. one of the things that is intriguing about it is that salt should not remain bright for 80 million years. and so, there still remains a question of how it can stay bright even so recently. even to now. , suggestions of current, active geological processes occurring on ceres. 106 milesr or vera, across, but there are craters larger than that on ceres. and one of the things you can see that is interesting in this crater, one of the things he could've seen quickly was the variety of terrain inside the cr ater. this one haulani is relatively young. it has fresh, sharply defined features which suggested has not been exposed to interplanetary debris.
yalode, not the largest crater, to look at these strange fractures. some going like this, some going at right angles. we do not fully understand those yet, but it is another indication of a lot of active geology. and this crater, dantu, has many fractures running around the interior, which have yet to be fully explain. and dawn is continuing to orbit ceres, continuing to take pictures and make a wide variety of other measurements in order to reveal the nature of this mysterious alien world. sorry,ow ceres, dawn is orbiting closer to the surface of ceres than the international space station to the earth. an illuston is
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