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Voter ID: See You in Court

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Republican state legislators’ proposed measures to require people to show identification or to swear an oath of their identity when they vote may appeal to their constituents, but are against the law, specifically, the Voting Rights Act.

LBJ signs the Voting Rights ActIn the wake of civil rights protests and violence, the Johnson Administration drafted a bill intended to enforce the 14th and 15th Amendments, aiming to eliminate various legal strategies to prevent blacks and other minorities from voting. President Johnson signed the Act into law on August 6, 1965.

During the Reagan Administration, Congress amended Section 2 of the law in 1982, prohibiting any voting practice or procedure that has a discriminatory result and stating that proof of intentional discrimination is not required. The provision focused instead on whether the electoral processes are equally accessible to minority voters.

Even though Section 2 is permanent and does not require renewal, President George W. Bush signed a bill extending the Voting Rights Act for another 25 years, on July 27, 2006, just to put the Voting Rights Act into perspective.

Voter ID bills are the latest GOP tactics to disenfranchise poor and minority populations who tend to vote Democratic. Similar to literacy tests in order to register to vote or to poll taxes in order to vote, the Act prohibits states from imposing any “voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice, or procedure…to deny or abridge the right of any citizen of the United States to vote…”

That a “photo ID law will increase citizen confidence in the process and combat fraud that could be going undetected,” as Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett (R) has said, has little basis in fact. There already are substantial punishments for those who vote illegally. However, little or no evidence of voter fraud to substantiate such a claim exists.

Voter ID bills are another form of voter discrimination that will find opposition from right-thinking Republican and Democratic legislators alike. As we have seen in Wisconsin, however, such opposition may only get traction on television. If such bills pass, they will go to court where they will lose because they are illegal.

Voter ID is a not-so-subtle step for the GOP that displays the party’s antipathy to civil rights.

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About Tommy Mack

Tommy Mack began his career in broadcasting and is a US Army graduate of the Defense Information School. He worked in Army Public and Command Information and earned a BS in Liberal Studies from the State University of New York, Albany. A marketing communications executive, Tommy became a business management consultant for a major international consulting company and its affiliates before establishing Tommy Mack Organization, a business consulting practice specializing in organization and communications management. A professional writer and blogger, he writes about politics, business, and culture.
  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Ok, Tommy. Tell us WHAT voters requiring an ID discriminates against.

    The GOP has historically led the fight for civil rights and continues to do so today. People have a right to have fair elections. That’s a civil right. Every fraudulent vote cast is an assault on the rights of every legitimate voter.

    Dave

  • zingzing

    “The GOP has historically led the fight for civil rights and continues to do so today.”

    jesus, dave.

  • Baronius

    Tommy – As a practical matter, ignoring the racist history of it, don’t you think that limiting the vote to those who can read would be a good idea? Secondly, would you be ok with fingerprinting or a UV hand stamp or something to prevent people from voting more than once?

    One other thing. You don’t provide proof of Republican antipathy for civil rights – and Dave’s right, the Democrats have been the Party of Racism beginning when they were the Party of Slavery.

    Zing – You tend to give that response when someone says something factual that offends you.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    It was not ‘factual,’ it was typical Orwellian Nalle-speak. And Baronius’s parroting of it is nauseatingly disingenuous.

    National Dem leaders beginning with FDR and Truman began leading the way to civil rights — and in the process captured black voters for their party ever since.

    The GOP began absorbing Dixiecrats in the 1960s — long enough ago that their ideas and attitudes are in the party’s bloodstream now.

    You can ‘prove’ things pretty easily by leaving out half or more of the facts.

    And I would think some sort of actual proof, rather than blithe assertions, is required in the case of the chimerical “widespread voter fraud.”

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    The [same old same old] slandering of one party and the sanctifying of the other made me angry, but it also misses the main point.

    This is only indirectly about race. It’s a very practical political strategy about voter turnout. Dems want to maximize it in areas they are likely to carry, and the GOP wants to suppress it in the same areas.

    If other factors besides ethnicity and income had the same predictive power for precinct results, the parties would come up with other artificially heated arguments to accomplish their goals.

  • Costello

    It’s not leading the charge when it comes to civil rights today. Ask gays and muslims to start.
    But the author and defenders have yet to show how proving who you are causes any harm.

  • Doug Hunter

    #5

    It is quite amusing to witness partisanship. I recognize it in myself. If it had been a republican leading the war in Libya I’d find a way to convince myself I supported it or at a minimum would not be as vocal in my dissappointment. It seems like requiring an ID is not an unreasonable request, but perhaps I’m just convincing myself of that because secretly I understand that the types of people who don’t have the ability or willingness to produce an ID are likely to vote democratic. Democrat’s knee jerk reaction is exactly the opposite, when you have situations come up such as absentee ballots that are from likely republican sources the roles are reversed… democrats find a reason to go ‘by the book’ even if it means disenfranchising people and suddenly republicans are the party of ‘every vote counts’.

  • Doug Hunter

    #6

    I understand the gay thing as republicans have a track record of opposing gay marriage, military integration, etc. I don’t know of any laws put forward by republicans that single out Muslims or take away any of their rights. I know there are some profiling issues so maybe that’s the source? Perhaps you could fill me in.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    It would amuse me, if it were in fact true, that the United States is one of the world’s oldest democracies (sort of) but still can’t organize an election properly.

    However, as Tommy and Handy pointed out, there’s plenty of accusations and innuendo but little to no evidence of actual voter fraud to an extent that would make any of these bills anything other than a waste of legislators’ time and taxpayers’ money.

  • Baronius

    I’m not disingenuous! YOU’RE disingenuous!

    I’ve found that commenting is getting easier now that I know the formula.

  • Doug Hunter

    #9

    Most of the good rigging is done legally before election day. Get the districts set up right, choose the right polling places, etc.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Baronius says: You don’t provide proof of Republican antipathy for civil rights – and Dave’s right, the Democrats have been the Party of Racism beginning when they were the Party of Slavery.

    You’d have a point if this were about the Democrats up through the passage of the Civil Rights Act…but what YOU are not understanding is that until the passage of the Civil Rights Act, BOTH parties had liberals and conservatives…and the Southern Democrats were the most racist of all. But after the CRA passed, the Dixiecrats essentially went away and the South as a whole went Republican.

    Study up on Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” and how and why the South went Republican after the passage of the CRA, Baronius, and you’ll see that it is only after then that Democrats BECAME the party of the liberals, and the Republicans BECAME the party of the conservatives. The southern states OPPOSED

    Again, calling the Dems the ‘party of racism’ would’ve had some truth to it…until the Dems became the party of the liberals and the Republicans became the party of the conservatives.

    In order to help you out, Baronius, here’s the voting results of the CRA by REGION:

    The original House version:

    Southern Democrats: 7-87 (7%-93%)
    Southern Republicans: 0-10 (0%-100%)

    Northern Democrats: 145-9 (94%-6%)
    Northern Republicans: 138-24 (95%-5%)

    The Senate version:

    Southern Democrats: 1-20 (5%-95%)
    Southern Republicans: 0-1 (0%-100%)
    Northern Democrats: 45-1 (98%-2%)
    Northern Republicans: 27-5 (84%-16%)

    See how many from the SOUTH opposed the CRA? It wasn’t because they were Democrat or Republican that they opposed the bill – it was because they were from the uber-conservative SOUTH. And what happened in the next few elections? The South HAD been a Democratic stronghold…but ALL those states suddenly became Republican strongholds.

    Read what Nixon strategist Kevin Philips said:

    From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don’t need any more than that… but Republicans would be shortsighted if they weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That’s where the votes are. Without that prodding from the blacks, the whites will backslide into their old comfortable arrangement with the local Democrats.

    The Republicans WANTED the Southern – and largely racist – white vote, because they had the majority and were the ones who would control the elections!

    The South has been conservative since America was born. The South was conservative when their congressmen and senators almost ALL opposed the Civil Rights Act. The conservative South – offended that there was a Democratic president who shepherded the passage of the CRA – deserted the Democratic party for the Republican party…because the Republican party suddenly began preaching conservatism.

    IN OTHER WORDS, Baronius, wherever you see American conservatives in charge, you WILL see stronger opposition to civil rights…and the party that is most conservative WILL be the one most opposed to civil rights!

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Dave –

    “The GOP has historically led the fight for civil rights and continues to do so today.”

    Just like their fight for equal rights for LGBT’s, their wholehearted support for gay marriage, and their rabid opposition to DOMA, right? Tell me some more about the Republicans LEADING the fight FOR civil rights, Dave.

    BUT YOU’RE RIGHT! The Republicans ARE fighting for civil rights…for CORPORATIONS! But if you’re a member of the LGBT community, well, I think we ALL saw what the Republicans thought during this last CPAC with several prominent Republicans choosing not to attend once the news came out that a pro-gay Republican group was a co-sponsor of the conference!

    And if you want to limit this discussion about civil rights to race, then refute what I posted to Baronius above. Man, but I thought you’d know better by now than to try to claim the high ground on Civil Rights for the modern Republican Party….

  • zingzing

    baronius: “Zing – You tend to give that response when someone says something factual that offends you.”

    no, i give that response when someone says something hilarious for the 10th time and it’s old. you have to be kidding yourself. just in the past few years, the gop has dehumanized women, muslims, immigrants and homosexuals. and if you want to go back in history, the civil rights act was not passed by republicans, it was passed by northerners (tell me how many southern republicans voted to pass it). you can try and rewrite history all you like to make it look like the gop is “leading the fight for civil rights,” but it’s laughable.

    actually, go ahead. tell me why they are leading the fight for civil rights, or have ever done so. please.

  • zingzing

    baronius: “Democrats have been the Party of Racism beginning when they were the Party of Slavery.”

    and then the republicans became the party of racism when lbj lost the south to the republican racists following the civil rights act. then they continued with the southern strategy. come on, baronius.

  • zingzing

    well shit, glenn got there first.

  • zingzing

    glenn, i’ve put up those same voting numbers several times, but these thick-skulled rightwingers just can’t bring themselves to look at them. i also wonder if they think a republican president would have signed it into law. i’m wondering.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Doug: If it’s legal, it’s not fraud. It may not be fair, and it may be absurd (congressional districts shaped like drunken octopuses so as to make sure enough affluent housing developments are included so as to guarantee that Rep. Hitlersalute gets reelected in perpetuity, for example), but it ain’t fraud.

    This is why in Britain we have an independent Boundary Commission which works out electoral constituencies based on actual sensible factors like population density and geography. Sometimes this benefits Labour, sometimes the Conservatives, sometimes one of the minor partiesm – but it balances out and it’s fair.

    As opposed to what happens in my current home state, California, where it’s left to the two major parties to carve out districts to suit themselves (which both the Reps and the Dems are only too happy to do) – with the inevitable result of permanent political gridlock in the State Capitol.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    glenn, i’ve put up those same voting numbers several times, but these thick-skulled rightwingers just can’t bring themselves to look at them.

    zing, Glenn, surely you should know after all this time that the Southern Democrats who voted against the CRA represent the true festering soul of the party, whereas the Republicans who voted against it were just isolated renegades. That isn’t obvious to you?

    i also wonder if they think a republican president would have signed it into law. i’m wondering.

    I get the feeling that someone like Eisenhower might have, if the wind of change had smelled pungent enough to him.

  • zingzing

    doc–maybe, but would he have done so at the obvious risk of losing political power in the south? the south went from the democrats to the republicans overnight. if a republican had signed it, the south would have remained in the democrats hands. but a democrat signed it, fully knowing what his actions were going to do to the political balance of power in the south. that’s balls. and doing the right thing. i’m doubtful that if the tables had been turned, the republicans would have done the same. in fact, from what they did after, it’s blatant that they wouldn’t have. they gleefully took in all the dixiecrats and their racist, southern voters.

  • Baronius

    “whereas the Republicans who voted against it were just isolated renegades”

    Dread, I see the point you’re trying to make, but there were only 11 Southern Republicans, and it’s an absurd stretch to try to use them as proof that Republicans are racist. Eisenhower did sign the 1957 Civil Rights Act into law, although it had been gutted – by LBJ – by the time it reached his desk. Considering that Eisenhower, along with Truman, desegregated the military, I think it’s a good bet that he would have signed something stronger.

    The Democrats lost the South by embracing the 1964 and 1965 acts, but it wasn’t instantaneous. I’d like to think that LBJ did what he believed was the right thing in 64-65, but the man wasn’t above making political calculations, and the acts did solidify black support for the Democrats. The Dems have gone on to use race to divide people (“gone on” in the sense of failing to cease, not in the sense of trying something new) ever since, which says a lot about their priorities.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Doc –

    if a republican had signed it, the south would have remained in the democrats hands. but a democrat signed it, fully knowing what his actions were going to do to the political balance of power in the south. that’s balls. and doing the right thing.

    from zing, and quoted for truth.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Baronius –

    I did NOT say that Republicans are racist. I DID say that the Republican party welcomed the racist whites from the South who were deserting the Democrats after passage of the CRA.

    AGAIN, Baronius:

    Read what Nixon strategist Kevin Philips said:

    From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don’t need any more than that… but Republicans would be shortsighted if they weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That’s where the votes are. Without that prodding from the blacks, the whites will backslide into their old comfortable arrangement with the local Democrats.

    So…are you more knowledgeable than a WILDLY successful presidential campaign strategist (see the 1972 election results) about what happened and why, concerning race and the politics of his day?

    I think not.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Baronius –

    If it’s the Dems who are using race so divisively, then why is it that the whites in the South (many – or possibly most – of whom ARE racist) stick with the Republican party?

    And why is it that most Republican party rallies are almost completely lily-white? Sure, there’s a few blacks in the Republican party…but doggone few – and this is NOT an ‘Obama effect’, since there’s been something like FIVE black Republicans elected to Congress since before WORLD WAR ONE.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    Allegations of voter fraud lack evidence to substantiate such claims. Citizens don’t just stand in line to vote without first being registered. A Voter ID as an additional piece of statutory business is what Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act prohibits, imposing any “voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice, or procedure…” The idea of limiting the vote to those who can read is not only a bad idea, it is also illegal.

    GOP antipathy to civil rights found a bandwagon in immigration before the 2008 election. It aimed its bigotry-mongering directly at Mexican immigrants, somehow segregating them from immigrants of other countries, like Russia or India, by singling out Mexican babies as enemies of the country, who deserve to be punished for the crime of being born in the United States. The GOP claimed that children of undocumented aliens would overburden a State’s resources, ignoring the fact that the Supreme Court had already held that argument to be unconstitutional.

    Republican senators Graham, Kyl and McConnell publically favored rewriting the 14th Amendment, especially its “citizenship” clause. The 14th Amendment is the basis of the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act and the Fair Housing Act, all opposed by the GOP and all signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson, a Democrat and a Southerner. Incidentally, after signing the Civil Rights Act, the prescient LBJ told an aide, “We have lost the South for a generation.”

    On civil rights the GOP has been consistent in its opposition. Glenn Beck gave it away when he said before his predominantly white Washington rally, “This is a moment, quite honestly, that I think we reclaim the civil rights movement. It has been so distorted and so turned upside down. It is an abomination.” Just substitute “repeal the 14th Amendment” for “reclaim the civil rights movement” to be accurate.

    To the GOP, claims do not require fact, as Wisconsin Governor Walker has recently demonstrated. Perhaps it is because the GOP has not been out of power long enough to understand what to do with it. The party seems enamored of pandering to its base with issues that will either lose in the senate nationally, such as NPR defunding, or lose in the courts at the state level, such as Voter ID bills.

    Tommy

  • Clavos

    In Florida at least, (a state that was accused of electoral fraud almost unanimously by the Democrats not long ago — everybody remember?), one must present one’s voter registration card in order to vote. Why is that not a violation of the Voting Rights Act?

    They should let anyone who shows up, especially if they have difficulty speking English, vote. There should be NO requirement to register; if you can make it to the polling place, you get to vote — period. if you can make it multiple times, all the better (Wasn’t it Mayor Daley of Chicago who used to say, “Vote early — and often?”)

  • Clavos

    For Glenn and others who see more virtue in the blue states than in the red states, here’s an interesting (and cogently written) discussion of a relatively recent phenomenon discovered by the Census Bureau in the data collected by the 2010 census: Published in The American Interest, the article says, in part:

    The Census reported that waves of blue state blacks fled the stagnant job opportunities, high taxes and rotten social conditions of the mostly blue northern states to seek better lives for themselves in the south…The Census story is a shocker. First, according to the Times, the Blacks leaving tend to be the “younger and better educated”. Second, the three states Blacks left in largest numbers don’t just include snake-bit Michigan; the other two are Illinois and New York. Within those states, Chicago and the city of the New York (widely considered among the most successful cities in the country) are the places Blacks are deserting. 17 percent of the Black flight from Big Blue is from the Empire State; after almost a century of trailblazing social policy, New York State has succeeded in creating the most hostile environment for Blacks in the country.

    And:

    The failure of blue social policy to create an environment which works for Blacks is the most devastating possible indictment of the 20th century liberal enterprise in the United States. Helping Blacks achieve the kind of equality and opportunity long denied them was more than one of many justifications for blue social policy: it was the defining moral task that has challenged and shaped American liberalism for the last fifty years.

    The Census tells us that in the eyes of those who know best, these well intentioned efforts failed. Instead of heaven, we have hell across America’s inner cities. Blue economic policy has cut the creation of new private sector jobs to a trickle in our great cities, while the high costs of public union urban services (and policies that favor government employees over the citizenry at large) impose crippling taxes and contribute to the ruinously high costs that blight opportunity. All the social welfare bureaucracies, diversity counselors and minority set-asides can’t make up for the colossal failure of blue social policy to create sustainable lower middle class prosperity in our cities.

    Well, well, well…

  • zingzing

    i’ve always had to show my voter reg card in all three states i’ve lived in. and daley was clearly being tongue in cheek. and that phrase has been used by many different politicians over the years.

  • El Bicho

    Muslim rights regarding freedom of assembly are being threatened in places like Yorba Linda, CA; Oostburg, WI; and Murfreesboro, TN. What Republican is leading the fight to stop it?

    I have to show my ID when I pick up my mail after taking a vacation, I have to show my ID when picking up tickets at Will Call, I have to show my ID when picking up my nephew from school, so why shouldn’t I have to show my ID and prove who I am when I vote? Have yet to see anyone answer that.

  • zingzing

    here’s some republicans leading the fight against racism. it’s disgraceful watching supposed “good” americans yelling such shit at families and children, and then it’s disgraceful again to watch elected leaders egging them on.

  • Clavos

    i’ve always had to show my voter reg card in all three states i’ve lived in.

    Of course, zing. so what’s the problem with having to show ID to vote?

    Poll taxes were discriminatory, but IDs???

  • zingzing

    i’ve got no problem with showing my id… never have. never had a problem showing my fake when i voted twice either. that’s a joke. if someone’s hellbent on voting illegally, being forced to show id isn’t going to change that. certainly, “swearing an oath” isn’t going to stop them either. yet somehow, there doesn’t seem to be much evidence that people are taking the time to concoct multiple identities and are going out and voting multiple times.

    that said, it’s just a fact that many people don’t carry id (the poor, the elderly, the forgetful, city dwellers who don’t depend upon cars, all sorts of people). should they not be allowed to vote?

    let’s say you moved to a new state on november 1st of an election year. can you vote in your new state?

    and who would be making the judgment calls about this? and would they know the rules (they haven’t in the past)?

    it looks like a gigantic can of worms that need not be opened to combat a problem that there’s little proof exists.

    in the end, it will create voter fraud. against voters who have every right to vote and are denied their right because of unnecessary laws. we’ve already got plenty of eligible voters being denied the vote. why don’t we do something about that before we take on a problem that hasn’t been proven to exist?

    do you like unnecessary laws, clavos?

  • zingzing

    hrm. that question about the new state thing is rather silly. i admit it. say oct 1 instead. yes, you’re supposed to get a new id within a month or something…

    anyway, faking a voter registration card is a rather expensive activity of dubious and little worth. yes, it’s been known to happen, but is it something that these id laws would stop? what would these id laws actually stop in the end? nothing but valid voters being denied their rights.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    Folks, let’s keep our eye on the ball. The issue is not showing an ID.

    The issue is showing a Voter ID, that new “piece of business” I referred to. Some of the Republican bills include “swearing an oath of identity.” Either or both of those two proposed requirements are prohibited by the Voting Rights Act.

    “The Census reported that waves of blue state blacks . . .” is racist. What does the Census report about red state whites? What about the pink states, or aquamarine states, or puce states? At what point of absurd shall we stop?

    Republicans are not racists. However, only a weak opposition party would come up with the Voter ID legislation being proposed in almost half of the states. It is bigoted and un-American.

    Tommy

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    I went through your reference…

    …and it provided no PROOF.

    Do you remember, Clavos, my article, “Proofs of the Failure of Conservative Politics”? I listed a whole heapin’ helping of solid statistics showing that life is generally better in blue states than in red. And what did you do? Your whole argument against the article was the “Correlation/Causation” logical fallacy, that all I presented were indications, but not proof…

    and here YOU are accepting at face value a MUCH WORSE case of that same logical fallacy, for not only did it very little in the case of verifiable statistics or strong indications, but it used a WEALTH of distortion and disinformation. Frankly, I could write a separate article for EACH of the paragraphs in your reference refuting the misinformation and rank assumptions contained therein!

    And why are you using that article to bolster what you think? Because you did not think critically when you read the article, but simply accepted it because it basically said what you already believed.

    I recommend you be aware of the ‘echo-chamber’ effect, Clavos – for we ALL spend so much time defending our respective beliefs that it becomes all-too-easy to buy into such fallacious logic as is contained in the reference you used.

  • Clavos

    …and it provided no PROOF

    Jeez, Glenn, you still haven’t learned how to read with comprehension.

    The proof is in the census report which shows large numbers of AAs moving back south since the 2000 census.

    The proof comes precisely from that sorry-ass, bumbling sad excuse of a federal government you so admire, and the article said so (though in kinder terms).

    It also linked (which you obviously missed) to a New York Times story that elaborated even further on the census report, complete with interactive maps illustrating the population shift.

    You really should learn to pay better attention when you “read,” Glenn.

    But then, you were a government employee for 20 years or more — I should go easy on you.

  • zingzing

    clavos, they may have moved because it was getting too cold up there what with the global cooling. or did they ask them why them moved on the census forms?

    people move for all sorts of reasons. i moved to blue states (twice) from a red state during the time between censuses… censi… whatever.

    why? little to do with economic policy. just wanted to move to a place. i certainly didn’t move from north carolina, which has the greatest tobacco non-tax in the nation, to washington, which has no state income tax, because of any of the above. i moved from bank-central charlotte to beautiful seattle because it was beautiful seattle. and then i moved to kickass new york because it was kickass new york (and i got tired of flying to the east coast to visit my old friends and my family).

    i seriously doubt that a majority of those moving are looking at the tax laws in a particular municipality. they’re moving for a variety of reasons. family, friends, love, a job, school, anything but red state vs blue state differentials. those that do move have a specific goal, and it’s not one you’ll find on your census report.

  • Arch Conservative

    “It aimed its bigotry-mongering directly at Mexican immigrants”

    Don’t beat around the Bush Tommy. Just come out and say it. You believe that people that enter this nation illegally should be allowed to vote as long as they vote for liberal Democrats.

    Why don’t you do a little experiment and try to vote in some other nation after you have entered it and remained illegally. Let me know how it works out.

  • Clavos

    zing, I was a crew chief and trainer in the 2000 census. The Census Bureau does indeed, on a selective sampling basis, ask a number of questions which probe much deeper than the standard enumeration form.

    Or perhaps you thought all those reports dealing with demographic issues they publish in the months following a census are simply pulled out of thin air?

  • Clavos

    @#34:

    You say,

    The issue is not showing an ID.

    The issue is showing a Voter ID, that new “piece of business” I referred to.

    You draw a specious line of distinction here, the voter registration card, which is (and has been for years) required to be shown in order to vote in most states, IS a form of “Voter ID,” and yet no one is objecting to it.

    The real issue here is the fear on the part of liberals that the requirement of a Voter ID will somehow lose them the reliable bought votes of the underclass, whose loyalty is bought and paid for with liberally (pun intended) dispensed government (read taxpayers) largesse.

    The issue of the “Voter ID” and spurious charges of racism are merely a smoke screen to distract. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.”

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    #40 – OK, and the spurious charges of ‘widespread voter fraud’ are merely a smoke screen to enable policies that will suppress voter turnout in Dem-leaning precincts. This is a discussion worth having, if both sides don’t keep ignoring half [or more] of the facts.

    By the way, it is requiring photo ID’s that is most contentious. 8 states currently require them. 19 states currently require non-photo ID’s. But if you have real proof of ‘widespread’ voter fraud in the other 23 states, pray do share it with us.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    Oh, WOW! You mean the article got its data from the CENSUS? And that’s ABSOLUTE PROOF of WHY they moved, huh?

    So why is it when I ALSO used data from the Census – and significantly more of it – did you pooh-pooh it as a logical fallacy? Don’t bother answering, because we all know why – it’s because the data I presented quite clearly showed you something you didn’t want to believe, while the data from the article – replete with myriad distorted observations – published assumptions that you DO want to believe. And that’s why you bought it.

    Clavos, has it ever occurred to you that, given a choice, many people would prefer to live where it’s warm? Have you ever heard of ‘snowbirders’? Of course you have…and you also know that a lot of those who get real tired of living in cold climates who watch the weather on the boob tube and see how much warmer it is Down South.

    Maybe some do sit back and say to themselves, “Well, I think I ought to uproot our family and move there because there I don’t have to pay so much in taxes.” But a lot more of them simply want to live in warmer areas.

    AND IT’S NOT because they’re fleeing the urban life. If you’ll look at this map showing where the black population is increasing, are they moving to rural areas? NO. The ones that are moving, are nearly all going to urban areas in the South.

    Some people enjoy the cold, Clavos…but most don’t IMO. I know I don’t like cold weather.

    So next time will you PLEASE apply your own vaunted logic and cynicism to your own references…for if you did, you wouldn’t like what you see – because you’d see the Kool-Aid for what it really is.

  • Clavos

    But if you have real proof of ‘widespread’ voter fraud in the other 23 states, pray do share it with us.

    I don’t.

    I never made that claim.

    It’s my understanding that, to counter charges of discrimination against the poor and “disadvantaged,” the states requiring the “Voter IDs,” (with or without photo) have declared that the cost of those IDs will be borne by the taxpayers, so again, I see no problem with the requirement.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Exactly. Requiring ID suppresses turnout among certain voter groups. Which was the intent all along. Claims of preventing fraud are specious.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Requiring ID suppresses turnout among certain voter groups. Which was the intent all along.

    Which, if true, could rebound on the intenders. As zing pointed out in #32, many older Americans (who tend to be more conservative in their politics) don’t carry ID. And the pyramid is getting broader at the top…

  • Costello

    Just because zing said it doesn’t make it true. Still haven’t heard what the harm is in having people prove who they are at the polls other than people who don’t carry ID or don’t want to be identified lean towards Dems.

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    “What harm does it do?” is one question. “What good does it do?” is another. I’m waiting for a convincing answer to the latter.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    #40: Your comment “The issue of the ‘Voter ID’ and spurious charges of racism are merely a smoke screen . . .” would be true if any such charges were made. Let’s eliminate confusion.

    I wrote that the quote about “waves of blue state blacks . . .” is racist and specifically, not speciously or spuriously, “Republicans are not racists.”

    The point remains, however, that new laws requiring a new Voter ID, not any other ID but some new one in addition to existing IDs, is prohibited.

    I hope this helps.

    Tommy

  • zingzing

    clavos: “The Census Bureau does indeed, on a selective sampling basis, ask a number of questions which probe much deeper than the standard enumeration form.”

    so how many moved because they “couldn’t stand the northern welfare state?” any?

    costello: “Just because zing said it doesn’t make it true.”

    and just because you said that doesn’t make it not true.

    “Still haven’t heard what the harm is in having people prove who they are at the polls other than people who don’t carry ID or don’t want to be identified lean towards Dems.”

    seriously? then go back up there and read. or go look it up. what’s wrong with voter id laws? hmm? google it if you can’t read the font blogcritics uses.

    i’ll also ask you what i asked clavos: why bother with this unnecessary law when you’ve already got enough eligible voters being denied their right to vote? (and what do you think will happen with this law? will it catch criminals, or will it simply become another technicality used to deny people their vote?) and do you like unnecessary laws?

    clavos never really answered those questions. i doubt you will either.

  • Clavos

    clavos never really answered those questions. i doubt you will either.

    You know (from comments elsewhere as well as my articles) that I don’t like not only “unnecessary” but also intrusive laws.

    And I’m not defending a voter ID (although, since I myself have been in a position in the past, thanks to sloppy government management of voter rolls, of being able to vote not once, not twice, but as many as three times in the same election, I do think the idea has some merit, and so do support the showing of the registration card to vote).

    What if we went the other way? Give automatic, unquestioned voting rights to the poor, the disenfranchised, the middle class, felons, in short, anyone who wanted to vote, except those with a net worth in excess of ten million dollars? The rich have their money, why should we let them vote, too? They’ll just vote their own interests and against ours — oh wait, that’s what everybody does…

    I didn’t answer earlier, because I recognized it as a rhetorical question to which you already knew the answer.

    And by the way, I did not vote more than once during the time I could have, although I was sorely tempted to do so, not for the extra votes, but simply to prove yet again how stupid and inept the government is.

  • Clavos

    so how many moved because they “couldn’t stand the northern welfare state?” any?

    I dunno. how many?

  • zingzing

    “What if we went the other way?”

    why? what point is there in that? no one is saying the rich shouldn’t be able to vote…

    “(since I myself have been in a position in the past, thanks to sloppy government management of voter rolls, of being able to vote not once, not twice, but as many as three times in the same election, I do think the idea has some merit, and so do support the showing of the registration card to vote).”

    so why take it up another notch? and would you care to explain how you were able to vote three times in the same election, and how showing your id would make that impossible?

    “I dunno. how many?”

    i’m not sure. i thought you would know. you must have seen one pass your desk.

    “I didn’t answer earlier, because I recognized it as a rhetorical question to which you already knew the answer.”

    well, it was both rhetorical and leading. it is an unnecessary law that addresses a problem that doesn’t really exist and fails to address the problem it purportedly exists to address. in fact, it would do far more damage to voter’s rights than it would to curb voter fraud. it’s a bad law, clavos. it’s designed for a very specific reason and it’s not what the gop wants you to believe.

  • Clavos

    would you care to explain…how showing your id would make that impossible?

    I didn’t say, nor advocate a new voter ID card, so I don’t understand why you keep challenging me — unless it’s because I’m stupid enough to keep answering you.

    would you care to explain how you were able to vote three times in the same election…

    At one point in my life, within the same election cycle, I lived in three different states and had a valid voter registration card in each. I worked in the airline industry at the time, with free travel privileges, so it would have been doable. I almost did, just for the hell of it — even went so far as to figure out what flights I would have to take in order to be in all three states on the same day.

  • zingzing

    “I didn’t say, nor advocate a new voter ID card, so I don’t understand why you keep challenging me.”

    well, you seem to be saying that you agree with the proposed laws. if that’s wrong, excuse me. but when you can’t point out just why they’ll be beneficial, and it’s pretty easy to point out why they would be discriminatory, it’s obvious the laws are bad.

    “At one point in my life, within the same election cycle, I lived in three different states and had a valid voter registration card in each.”

    well, that’s because the states don’t really communicate all that well. however, if you had, “just for the hell of it,” voted more than once, that’s a felony, isn’t it? do you think your vote is worth so much? nope. neither does anyone else.

  • zingzing

    “well, that’s because the states don’t really communicate all that well.”

    and if you’re going to say that it’s incompetence at a federal level, do you really want the federal government spending the money necessary to track your ass through your votes?

  • El Bicho

    “it’s pretty easy to point out why they would be discriminatory”

    Who is being discriminated? I mean, other than people too lazy or too dumb to carry their IDs on a day when they should know they need to carry it?

  • zingzing

    people who don’t have ids. or just look upthread. or do a little google search into why voter id laws are discriminatory.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Just to put in my two cents worth, I really don’t have a problem with people being required to show a photo ID in order to vote. Maybe that’s a result of carrying my military ID every single day since 1981 even until now, but I think that the world has changed.

    That said, such a law will not make any appreciable difference in the nonexistent voter fraud ‘epidemic’ that the Republicans cry about every election cycle (all the while eagerly using illegal voter caging to wrongly stop tens of thousands of properly-registered voters from casting their votes).

    For instance, would carrying a photo ID have stopped Clavos from voting in three states, if he had ID’s from each of those states? Of course not. It wouldn’t have stopped Ann Coulter who did just that and bragged about it! But let’s not ignore how there’s a HUGE amount of air- and car-travel on election day just so those evileviltreasonousbadbad Democrats can travel from state to state to state to vote a whole lot of times just to change the election results!

  • Costello

    Never said it did, zing. That’s why I am not making any grand proclamation about what entire groups of people do. If people don’t have Id, how do they egister to vote in the first place?

  • zingzing

    you can use your social security number to register. if you do not have a dmv id or social security number, you can use a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or some other government document that shows your name and address.

  • Cannonshop

    It’s too easy to get an absentee ballot in some states, and I don’t have a problem requiring people to show up (if only to prove they are, in fact, alive) to vote. Of course, now I’m in a state that is almost entirely vote-by-mail so it’s much, much easier to stuff the ballot box than it was in 2004.. but that violates the rights of our fictional citizens who reside at the Registrar’s office and whom only do anything on election days in King County, not to mention trampling the rights of our deceased citizens, clones, etc.

    Naturally, of course, it’s okay to deny the vote to deployed soldiers in violation of the Law-after all, none other than famed civil-rights attorney and present Attorney General Eric Holder openly used the Justice Department’s resources to obtain waivers for states that did not want to comply with laws requiring them to count the votes of deployed service-members and to get those military members’ ballots to them in time TO vote.

  • El Bicho

    so people need ID to prove who they are to register to vote but not ID to prove who they are to vote. that’s not also discriminatory?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Gee, I’m also in a vote-by-mail state, and it’s next to impossible to stuff the ballot box. Why? Because unless someone’s willing to go to the expense and risk of printing out more envelopes and ballots – all colored and constructed just so – and HOPE that no one would notice, ballot-stuffing cannot happen by mail here.

    It’s the same old thing every election cycle – the Republicans cry out “Voting Fraud!” when there’s ZERO evidence of voting fraud, but don’t seem to think there’s anything wrong at all with disenfranchising properly-registered voters in majority-Democratic districts.

    If you want to worry about ballot-stuffing, Clavos, then you SHOULD worry about the privately-owned ballot-box companies who use proprietary – and NOT visible to the public OR the government – software to count the ballots…and we’re supposed to trust the results.

    But you won’t worry about that, will you? Especially since you’re secure in the knowledge that every one of these ‘electronic ballot boxes’ are manufactured and operated by right-wing companies….

  • zingzing

    eb: “so people need ID to prove who they are to register to vote but not ID to prove who they are to vote.”

    see #60. you don’t need an id to register.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    By consensus, then, it appears that new laws requiring a new Voter ID being proposed by Republicans in half of the states are more of a waste of time than they are of anything of substance. No voter fraud exists at the ballot box level.

    Will such bills pass? They could. However, it would not take much to challenge them in court and have them invalidated. In Ohio, the new Voter ID legislation has been introduced under the cover of the Republican budget proposal. It is a blip on the ACLU radar.

    If there is a point to the various Republican propositions, it is to get attention and maybe a sound bite or two, never mind the extra costs they would create to the states to implement them.

    The propositions are fluff, in that case. That is what happens when there is no real mandate to do anything. The pursuit of failure appears to be irresistible.

    Tommy

  • El Bicho

    “you don’t need an id to register.”

    What exactly do you think people are doing by showing a social security number, a dmv id, a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or some other government document that shows your name and address if not identifying themselves?

  • zingzing

    alright, if you want to put it that way (and you know that’s mincing words there, eb)… would a gas bill be good enough to allow me to vote? and why with the extra step? and what’s the point? just an extra layer of red tape, another hoop to jump, another way to make voting an even more mind-numbing process, another useless law. yay.

  • http://aclu.org Jules Greene

    New Voter ID bills are new poll taxes. If that’s your case, the ACLU has your back.

    But you missed the bigger noose to hang these Republican pricks, Tommy. It is a new expense. How does that work with state budget cutting? Make that make sense. Typical GOP hypocracy.

  • Cannonshop

    #63 Glenn, you don’t stuff the box with home-made ballots, you just registr your cat, a few people in the graveyard, maybe your dog (if the name is human enough) and three or four people you used to know who are probably dead. I live in Washington too-you don’t have to prove you’re ALIVE to register, and once registered, those ballots come whether you vote or don’t.

  • Cannonshop

    come to think of it, now it’s even EASIER-just get a job at the polling place (not hard if you’re active in the Democratic Party in King County, and fairly popular with your fellows in the party), and register all the above-with the elections office as their place of residence.

  • zingzing

    and then, on election day, set up a dressing room in a trailer out back at the elections office. in the morning, vote as yourself. after voting, quickly make your way to the trailer out back and put on your kitty costume. reenter the line as your own cat. vote as your cat. quickly make your way back to the trailer and dress up as your grandmother, who died in 1997. make sure you put on some eau de grave, or they’ll never believe you’ve been gone this last decade. vote as your dead grandmother, and don’t forget to reattach any digits or limbs that may happen to fall off during said process. if you do happen to leave one behind, now’s the perfect time to dress up as fred, your lovable golden retriever. woof woof! snatch up that errant finger and chew it like it’s a dead squirrel! nom nom nom. good boy, fred. now go vote.

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    “The people who cast the rotes don’t decide an election: the people who count the votes do.” Attributed to Joseph Stalin, the quote is what Cannon refers to. King County, I’ll take it, is where Seattle is and where voter fraud made the news, in the summer of 2007, when both King and Pierce County prosecutors filed felony charges against election officials who perpetrated the crime, calling it “an act of vandalism upon the voter rolls.”

    Incidentally, the U.S. Attorney General will not investigate unless someone can bring him proof of fraud, which no one does. Massive voter fraud does not exist.

    Oh, and about the changing room trailer zing mentioned, one must be vigilant in looking for older Winnegegos parked near polling places.

    Tommy

  • http://tmackorg.com/ Tommy Mack

    Sorry about the typo, “rotes” not “votes.”

    T

  • Glenn Contrarian

    C-shop –

    Oh, that’s right! You live here too! Tell you what – how about you come on over to Bremerton and let me meet you and give you a tour of the local Navy base – you know, the one you think I don’t have access to since (according to you) I didn’t retire?

    And while you’re at it, bring along a reporter, ’cause they just LOVE to find people faking military service! And if you think my AFID with the “INDEF” expiration date is fake, we’ll head over to the personnel section and they can point out my name and service in DEERS.

    In case you’re wondering, C-shop, you DID get under my skin somewhat. You DID tick me off – because the fastest way to make me lose my temper is to seriously accuse me of something I didn’t do (this comes from having once nearly lost my career to a false accusation). Unless you count the fact that I use a pseudonym for a last name, I’ve never lied on this or any other forum I’ve frequented…because that’s the freedom that anonymity gives me – the freedom to tell the truth.

    Come to think of it, I seem to remember you saying you lived in Western Washington, so I’m not that far away from you. Want to do this? We’ll exchange e-mails and arrange for a meeting here and I’ll show you around the base – you might actually enjoy it. I’ll treat you as courteously as I would most other former sailors. I’ll even buy you a beer at the local pub on the base – there’s no more enlisted or chief’s club on the Bremerton side of Naval Base Kitsap, but there is a small pub on base. But there’s one price I will demand of you – when you find out that you falsely accused me, that you apologize publicly here on BC.

    Are you willing to see if I”m telling the truth? Are you willing to pay that price?

    I’m not holding my breath.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And C-shop –

    1 – Exactly how will you register your dog to vote in WA without a driver’s license or state-issued ID card?

    2 – Exactly how much PROOF do you have that people in WA are casting illegal votes? That is, other than the fact that You Just Know that it’s happening?

    That last, of course, is as compared to the rock-solid proof we DO have that the Republican party on MANY occasions has used illegal voter caging to disenfranchise properly registered voters….

  • Doug Hunter

    #75

    The same amount of proof that I have that pot dispensaries aren’t only selling to those who have legitimate health concerns.

    I have to have ID to buy cold medicine, what is the problem with requiring it to vote? I understand that you realize that people barely functional enough to meet any requirement no matter how small are very likely to vote democrat, but outside of your knee jerk partisanship what is the great harm.

    We should all want responsible voters, shouldn’t we?

  • pablo

    “I have to have ID to buy cold medicine, what is the problem with requiring it to vote?”

    Do you live in a free country Doug, or a nanny state bordering on totalitarianism?

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    Nearly half the states have no current ID requirement, and I have seen no credible evidence of serious fraud resulting from this. If there is no problem, why is a ‘solution’ necessary?

    [And btw the requirement for drugstores to record your drivers license number to buy even one small packet of pseudoephedrine to unstuff your nose, is ludicrous and purposeless.]

  • STM

    I love Cannon’s idea of getting to dog registered to vote.

    These things are possible, even though I’d previously thought them urban myths.

    I once had an ex of mine registered as a dog with the local council and sent her the tag and all the papers … although the bloke looked a bit funny at me when he saw what I’d written for “description of animal”: long-faced mongrel bitch.

    On a seripus note, I got to vote here on Saturday to get rid of an incompetent state government that had somehow survived four terms (four year terms, so 16 years in this state).

    t was the biggest electoral bloodbath I’ve evers een: the Opposition party won with a huge swing against the Government and ended up with five-eighths of the seats in parliament.

    As I went to the polling place and got my name ticked off the list, I took my driver’s licence out of my wallet because I’ve been asked for ID before but all they wanted to know was whether I’d already voted at another polling place that day.

    And in my haste to put a number one in a couple of squares and stuff the papers in a ballot box, I left my credit card, which I’d pulled out along with my licence, in the booth.

    I cancelled it on Sunday morning when I realised it was gone, then an electoral official phoned me after looking up my number to tell me – five hours too late – that it had been handed in.

    Such is life.

    I like the voting dog idea, though.

  • http://www.14thamendmentsummary.com 14th Amendment Summary

    I think we now have the technology to get out this weird voting system.. if only we could spend some money developing such programs and inventions.. but i guess war is more important?

    B….SS…