The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

If We Outlaw Martian Voting, Then The 2012 Election Will Be Swarmed By Disenfrachised Martian ‘Voters’

Posted on | June 20, 2011 | 29 Comments

by Smitty

Does anybody understand the meaning of this buffoonery from E.J. Dionne, Junior? Emphasis mine throughout the post.

Rigging the 2012 Election

WASHINGTON — An attack on the right to vote is under way across the country through laws designed to make it more difficult to cast a ballot. If this were happening in an emerging democracy, we’d condemn it as election-rigging. But it’s happening here, so there’s barely a whimper.

The laws are being passed in the name of preventing “voter fraud.” But study after study has shown that fraud by voters is not a major problem — and is less of a problem than how hard many states make it for people to vote in the first place. Some of the new laws, such as limiting the number of days for early voting, have little plausible connection to battling fraud.

These statutes are not neutral. Their greatest impact will be to reduce turnout among African-Americans, Latinos and the young. It is no accident that these groups were key to Barack Obama’s victory in 2008 — or that the laws in question are being enacted in states where Republicans control state governments.

How, precisely? How would it follow that treating the identification requirement to vote as similar to, say, checking in for a flight (as distinct from clearing the TSA), reduce turnout?

Paradoxically, the rank partisanship of these measures is discouraging the media from reporting plainly on what’s going on. Voter suppression so clearly benefits the Republicans that the media typically report this through a partisan lens, knowing that accounts making clear whom these laws disenfranchise would be labeled as biased by the right. But the media should not fear telling the truth or standing up for the rights of the poor or the young.

Wait, E.J.: shouldn’t you establish that voter suppression has occurred, prior to connecting that dot to any major party? Oh, yeah: that would be an example of an honest argument. Given that you are sort of without fact #1 to stand on, it more logically follows that you’d not bore your reader with those pesky ‘fact’ things.

Sometimes the partisan motivation is so clear that if Stephen Colbert reported on what’s transpiring, his audience would assume he was making it up. In Texas, for example, the law allows concealed handgun licenses to work as identification, but not student IDs. And guess what? Nationwide exit polls show that John McCain carried households in which someone owned a gun by 25 percentage points but lost voters in households without a gun by 32 points.

Stephen Colbert is a comedian; do you normally accept his show as fact, E.J.? And what a crappy correlation==causation argument you have here. Could it be that student identification is insufficiently rigorous? Can you check in for the aforementioned plane flight with a student ID? I would be generally surprised if you could.

In part because of a surge of voters who had not cast ballots before, the United States elected its first African-American president in 2008. Are we now going to witness a subtle return of Jim Crow voting laws?

Given the systemic intellectual dishonesty of your post, Dionne, it strikes me that the greater threat to the integrity of the vote is from the Left, which, having spewed such inflammatory lies as contained in your column, will be forced to back up the lies with various acts of propaganda.

Whether or not these laws can be rolled back, their existence should unleash a great civic campaign akin to the voter registration drives of the civil rights years. The poor, the young and people of color should get their IDs, flock to the polls and insist on their right to vote in 2012.

Why, yes: yes, they should. Legally. They call these events ‘elections’.

If voter suppression is to occur, let it happen for all to see. The whole world, which watched us with admiration and respect in 2008, will be watching again.

Taken slightly out of context, as snarky post as this, the last paragraph almost seems a threat. But E.J. is a swell guy, and he would never do anything less that fair, balanced, honest, honorable, morally sound, and highly respectable. We just have to make sure the little green men don’t get too near his polling place.

On the other hand, Legal Insurrection, looking on the bright side, figures it might allow time for a vacation.


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