"They rule by the fear of their guns. They must be stopped by the power of your ballots". They refers to Bugs Fenner and other mobsters whose illicit rackets will be smashed to smithereens by undercover cop Johnny Blake. When Warner Bros.' Depression-era gangster movies began to draw protests, the studio reinvigorated the genre with stories emphasizing law enforcers instead of lawbreakers. The swift, sturdy 'Bullets or Ballots' reflects that, with Edward G. Robinson (as Blake) siding with the good guys for the first time in a gangland saga. Humphrey Bogart plays the short-fused Fenner. And Joan Blondell and Louise Beavers, in an unusual story element for the times, are thriving numbers operators whose grift is usurped by the mob.