VOTER DISENFRANCHISEMENT IN WORDS AND PICTURES!

Aug. 20, 2012  By Jack Jodell

Much has been said about Republican / Tea Party – led efforts to disenfranchise Democratic-leaning voters this 2012 election cycle. Though vehemently denied by Republicans, the empirical evidence points strongly against them.  From their strong and successful efforts to shut down ACORN beginning in 2009 for its successful minority voter registration efforts the year before, to their latest attempts to limit early weekend voting, to  the adoption by so many Republican-led legislatures all across the country of measures to install nearly identical restrictive voter ID irequirements in each state, it has been pretty obvious to this blogger and many others what they are really up to. There is simply no other explanation for the massive amount of students or minorities being singled out for disenfranchisement, as the overwhelming majority of them typically vote Democratic. There is likewise no suitable explanation for the curtailment of early weekend voting, or the severe cutback of voter registration hours outside of normal working hours, as it is obvious that most of those registering at those times will also be voting Democratic. There is no suitable explanation for a Tea Party Pennsylvania legislator gleefully calling out on video tape, “Voter ID - which will enable Mitt Romney to carry this state – done deal!” There is also no suitable explanation for Robert Simpson, a highly partisan, activist Republican Pennsylvania judge, having heard strong evidence to the contrary, from then refusing to rule against the recently passed and highly restrictive voter ID bill on grounds that it was discriminatory and would disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of eligible voters who were minority, elderly, poor, or otherwise couldn’t afford new state-issued IDs.  Pennsylvanians should impeach and retire this judge for his blatantly discriminatory decision. 

The now Tea Party-infested, highly reactionary Republican Party has embarked on this near-resurrection of discriminatory Jim Crow laws with only one purpose in mind: to defeat as many Democrats as possible and thereby regain total control of all branches of the government.  Once this aim has been achieved, they will succeed in what they have been attempting to do in various ways ever since 1935: privatizing Social Security and the U.S. Postal Service, and end or severely curtail nearly all other social safety-net programs such as welfare and  unemployment compensation. All regulatory reforms enacted since the Great Depression will be ended, and the result will be a resunption of racial and economic discrimination on a large scale. They will repeal the Affordable Care Act, end Medicare and Medicaid, and replace them with a woefully inadequate voucher system which will do nothing to control rising medical costs and will only result in a huge and rapid increase of people being unable to afford health insurance and others being denied coverage for a variety of ridiculous reasons. They will also gut OSHA and completely do away will with labor unions. The country will slide into massive poverty as millions of middle class jobs will disappear, only to be replaced by much lower-paying ones. Taxes will be slashed and the net result will be an unbelievably massive shift in wealth from the bottom to only the uppermost peak of those at the very top of the income scale. THIS disaster will occur in the Republicans succeed in this latest voter suppression drive they are spearheading.

The conservatives insist that they are only trying to prevent voter fraud from occurring. They have been convinced by a very small segment of dishonest paranoids in their ranks that President Obama, the nation’s first African-American President, was elected fraudulently by massive amounts of unqualified minority votes supplied by ACORN in 2008, and they are bound determined to prevent a recurrence in 2012. That, of course, is a LIE because study after study has proven repeatedly that voter fraud has occurred only in an insignificantly small number of isolated cases over a great many years; massive amounts of non-citizens have NOT been casting ballots; and very few deceased people’s names have been added to the ranks of eligible voters in an effort to steal elections!   

While  I am NOT your typical Glenn Beck-style conspiracy theorist who continually sees ominous nonexistent threats lurking everywhere, I DO see this vote-suppression activity as a cynical conspiracy deliberately aimed to deny progressives/liberals/Democrats/minorities their Constitution-given right to vote. After capturing a large number of governorships and statehouses in the fateful 2010 election, the Republican Governors Association hurriedly convened a meeting in which these disenfranchisement efforts were discussed and adopted. Over the next few months, a large number of states passed them and put them into effect. They are in direct violation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

It is shameful that the  Republican Party, which once stood for fairness and universal suffrage, should have disintegrated in to the pathetic, anti-democracy / exclusionary MESS it has now become. Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt are surely spinning in their graves to see the awful damage this misguided Tea Party infusion has wrought! The Tea Party loves to think of itself as true interpreters – indeed, DEFENDERS – of what our Founding Fathers originally intended for our country. But they completely overlook the fact that our Founding Fathers themselves recognized that our country must, over time, change to meet the challenges of future, unforseen needs. That is why they created the Bill of Rights in the first place! This also enabled our country to enact kegislation which freed the slaves, allowed ex-slaves, and then women, the right to vote, and later on provided economic rights to workers (minimum wage, labor unions, unemployment benefits, workmen’s compensation), and non-workers (welfare, dusability benefits, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid). As a result of their severely myopic overlooking of this very important piece of Americana, today’s very misguided Tea Party champions (like Michele Bachmann and VP-designate Paul RUIN) now wish to dismantle and destroy these relatively recent and vital changes to our system. One of the methods they have chosen for this task has been to deny their opponents access to the polls.

The method by which these drastic new restrictive measures were so hurriedly adopted and implemented smacks of conspiracy. As such, this particular blogger believes that all those who sponsored or passed these restrictive measures, from the very highest  elected official down to the lowest representative who voted for them, along with all the political policy wonks who advised in favor of or helped draft them, should be tried and sentenced for their roles in violating that precious Voting Rights law. What are YOUR thoughts on this, readers?   

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About jackjodell53

I am an American Dissident trapped in a country where poor and middle class people are constantly being exploited and lied to by a very rigid and conservative plutocratic elite. I believe in government OF, FOR, and BY the people, not one controlled as it now is by corporations and special interests.
This entry was posted in commentary, conservative Republicans, extremists, labor unions, Politics, Progressives, reactionary Republicans, Tea Party and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to VOTER DISENFRANCHISEMENT IN WORDS AND PICTURES!

  1. Darlene says:

    I’m sure you already know my thoughts on this. If the Republicans win more State houses, more Congressional seats and the presidency we are lost as a nation and our great experiment will be no more.

    I remember when I was young seeing political cartoons of obese men in suspenders sitting around a table smoking big cigars plotting their nefarious deeds. For 35 years men of the same stripe have been gathering to plot the complete takeover of the government. Now they wear designer suits and sip lattes, but their evil intent remains the same. The strategy is nearly complete. Use Deibold machines to skew the vote, disenfranchise the poor, minorities, elderly and the young and poor gazilions into TV commercials spewing lies. Elect candidates that can be manipulated and those behind-the-scenes billionaires will have taken over our country.

    I never thought I would subscribe to a conspiracy theory, but the evidence is there. The reporting of the Republicans meeting the day Obama was inaugurated to plot to make him a one term president has been well documented. If they can’t win the election honestly they will do so by stealth and with wealth. The only thing that can save this country is if enough citizens realize what is happening and revolt en mass and vote the scumbags out of office we might have a chance. Sadly, I see the opposite happening.

    • jackjodell53 says:

      Darlene,
      I agree with you on nearly everything, but I am not willing to throw in the towel quite yet – my Irish blood has not been boiling quite long enough, but it is very close to that point. I do believe we will narrowly avoid disaster in November and teach those crooked billionaires a well-deserved lesson! However, should things not go our way for some reason, I will, thanks to you, entitle my very first post-election posting “BY STEALTH AND WITH WEALTH!” For that, my dear friend, will have summed up our frustration perfectly! Say your prayers and keep your fingers crossed that I won’t have to write such a post. Thank you for that fabulous phrase! :-)

      • Well said, except for one small detail. Forgive the nit pick, but today’s tea party champions aren’t just misguided. They know very well what they’re doing and why. They are political hustlers and con artists. They’re not out to serve the public or some principled cause. First and foremost they’re in it to serve themselves, and it shows.

      • Finally… maybe I can post now. We’ll see…
        Keep your Irish blood up, Jack! I have to agree with S.W., tho. They know what they are up to, on the organizational levels. On the footside, they are misled.

  2. jackjodell53 says:

    Thank you for pointing that out, S.W. It definitely needed to be said!

  3. infidel753 says:

    I wonder if the rank-and-file Republicans who support these voter-suppression actions have given any deep thought to where the path they’re setting out on would ultimately lead.

    Imagine for the sake of argument that Republicans win everything in a landslide this year and are in a position to enact even more voter-suppression laws to guarantee future election victories. The demographic changes sweeping the country still will not stop. Racial minorities will continue to increase as a percentage of the population due to differential birth rates and age structure (immigration has only a marginal effect on this). Non-religious and secular people will continue to grow as a percentage of the population since it’s the youngest age groups that most lean that way. Both racial and religious minorities will become ever mare “hardened” in anti-Republican feeling due to Republicans’ schemes to disenfranchise them, if nothing else. The older, more conservative / fundamentalist demographic which leans Republican will continue to die off, at least for a while.

    So to stay in power, Republicans would need to keep tightening the laws to disenfranchise an ever-larger part of the population, This would eventually lead to a kind of apartheid and total de-legitimization of the system. Living in a society like that, even as a member of the privileged group, is neither comfortable nor safe.

    I can’t believe even teabaggers want that future for themselves, if they would just think it through.

    • jackjodell53 says:

      infidel753,
      I doubt that today’s tea party – infested Republicans, much unlike their pre-Reagan Republican predecessors, give much deep thought to ANYTHING beyond their own paranoia, their personal economic holdings, their guns, and/or their own narrow-minded religious and social beliefs. While they have never in recent history been known for inclusiveness, at least in times past they genuinely cared about and wished to preserve the best aspects of this country. Now, all they are their new teabagger allies seem to want to do is to protect the wealthy at the expense of the poor and middle class, and turn our social and economic clocks back to the 1890s. They are the petrified guardians of an unjust past heading into an uncertain future, and the thought terrifies them. They must be stopped before they bring about a disastrous new social, economic, and political Dark Ages.

  4. mudrake says:

    I DO see this vote-suppression activity as a cynical conspiracy deliberately aimed to deny progressives/liberals/Democrats/minorities their Constitution-given right to vote.

    Amen, Jack.

    Rather than widening their party ideology so that more people might embrace their ideals, they remain closed-off and, as a result, have to find ways of restricting the number of voters on election day.

    The word ‘pathetic’ doesn’t even come close!

    • jackjodell53 says:

      mudrake,
      It certainly doesn’t. These anti-democracy zealots are yoday’s Puritans, only there is nothing pure about them!

  5. tnlib says:

    A subject dear to my heart as you know and something the MSM should have jumped on a long time ago. Of course it’s a conspiracy – planned out a long time ago, and bought and paid for by ALEC.

  6. tnlib says:

    Just came across this:

    “The Republican attorneys general of Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, South Carolina, North Dakota and Texas filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court arguing that a key provision of the Voting Rights Act is unconstitutional.”

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2012/08/24/740401/gop-attorneys-general-voting-rights-act-should-be-struck-down-to-boost-laws-suppressing-minority-vote/

    • jackjodell53 says:

      Thanks, tnlib. It is unbelievable how ruthlessly reactionary the Republican Party has become. They must be stopped – NOW – in 2012!.

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