"The rules of the game"
This is all follows a U.S. Supreme Court decision last year striking down provisions of the Voting Rights Act, which required a number of states --- many of them in the South --- to get clearance from the Justice Department before changing their voting laws.
Without that protection, voting rights advocates say, in states with a history of discriminatory voting practices against racial minorities those who seek to unduly influence elections will find it easier to suppress votes.
"We have seen a dramatic increase in politicians trying to manipulate the rules of the game in terms of making it harder for citizens to vote," said Myrna Perez, a senior counsel at NYU's Brennan Center for Justice.
The flurry of new and more restrictive voter laws coincided with the 2010 elections and new Republican majorities that came into power, Perez said.
In 2012, the increase in laws reached a fever pitch when 19 states put forth measures civil rights groups view as restrictive.
Now, as the 2014 midterm elections loom, voting rights advocates point to scenarios in the 2000 and 2012 general elections in Florida, where there was confusion about voting methods, laws and long lines, as a model for what could happen elsewhere in the country.
"I guess you could say we're ahead of the curve on voter suppression," said Deirdre Macnab, president of the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Florida adding that the state has since passed a series of election reform measures which have improved voting. "When it comes to Florida, we first saw the impact of taking away days and times to vote. And the legislators were properly shamed and embarrassed. It's unfortunate that other states have to experience that."