Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Voter-suppression efforts under attack

Garry Trudeau has a knack for hitting the hot-button issues at exactly the right time.

Earlier this year, Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania fashioned their "voter I.D." law to "deliver" the Keystone State to Mitt Romney.

Well, opponents challenged the law and it's scheduled for court next week. Here's the link to the story.

But, Republicans had to admit this week that "there have been no investigations or prosecutions of in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania; and the parties do not have direct personal knowledge of any such investigations or prosecutions in other states."

In other words, this idea of "voter fraud" is a completely bogus issue. 

In fact, its chief aim is to suppress the minority vote, which skews towards Democrats.

This is important in Oregon because Knute Buehler, a Bend Republican, is running for Oregon secretary of state this November and a central tenet of his campaign is to root out so-called "voter fraud."

The truth is, in-person "voter fraud" is non-existent. And, there has been no credible claim that voter fraud has occurred in Oregon's vote-by-mail system.

The real vote fraud occurs in the "irregularities" reported over the years in places like Chicago (1960), Florida (2000) and Ohio (2004) where vote tallies by the authorities were considered dubious at best.

In this day of instant computer tabulation, the chances for a rigged election have escalated. But, it's not voters who are the problem, but political operatives out to subvert the system.

Also, these voter I.D. laws, all enacted by Republicans, are meant to suppress the Democratic vote in battleground states like Pennsylvania and Florida. 

That being said, a national poll today from NBC and the Wall Street Journal show President Obama ahead of the Mitt-wit by 6 percentage points. In battleground states, Obama is up by 8 percent. Plus, Intrade shows Obama at 57 and Mitt-wit at 40.

Obama is going to need a wide lead in the opinion polls to offset the GOP's voter-suppression efforts.

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