Friday, May 12, 2017

Elections may mean nothing

Before the election the nasty guy pronounced that if he didn’t win it was because the voted was rigged. Afterward he was apparently was miffed that while he got the job he didn’t get the most votes. He talked more about a rigged election.

Also after the election the Michigan state legislature said two things:

* There is no need to have a recount of the nasty guy’s narrow win in the state or investigate the election day irregularities in Detroit. There is no voter fraud.

* The voter ID laws in Michigan need to be more stringent because of voter fraud. The proposed law was passed.

For many years the GOP has been pushing the idea of voter fraud as a reason for enacting voter suppression laws. Michigan is just one of many states where such laws were enacted. Some of them are severe enough that citizens on the wrong end of these laws don’t jump through the hoops to get a proper ID, but simply don’t try to vote. That surely made a difference in Michigan’s election outcome in 2016.

In January I read that the sign of a despot is that elections no longer matter. They are held, but the outcome cannot change the government. And recently the GOP members of Congress have been acting like that is already the case.

Also in the last few months, especially in the last couple weeks, I’ve heard from various sources that because of the way citizens are annoyed with the House health plan the 2018 election could decisively flip the House to the Democrats, in spite of the extensive gerrymandering.

So it isn’t surprising, though highly troubling, that the nasty guy is talking about voter fraud again. And this time he wields an Executive Order. It creates a “voter fraud commission.” We’re not at all surprised the co-chairs of the commission are vice nasty guy, who oversaw voter suppression laws in Indiana, and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the biggest promoter of the myth of voter fraud.

Some of the things on Kobach’s resume that endeared him to vice nasty guy:

* He has imposed strict voter ID laws, which courts have smacked down each time.

* He lobbied for and got a state law to give him a team of prosecutors independent of the AG to target voter fraud. The number of cases of fraud his crack team found: four.

* He created and promoted the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program to match voter names across state rolls – with the problem it matches only names and 85 of the top 100 most common last names are used by minorities. This purged over 7 million people, most low-income people of color who tend to vote Democratic.

Depending how successful Kobach is, don’t depend on the vote in 2018 save us. Resist now.

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