PURELY POLITICAL, by James Buckley
Concerned about “voter suppression” by lawmakers in Georgia and other Republican-led legislatures? Are you worried that Republicans are leading the charge to deny or prevent people from exercising their constitutional right to vote?
You shouldn’t be, as it has been the Democratic Party that, over the past 145 years or so, has suppressed voting, particularly in the South, where leading Democrats re-constituted the Ku Klux Klan in 1865, right at the end of the Civil War.
Later, Southern Democrats activated their newly Supreme Court-approved Jim Crow laws (beginning in 1877), which played a critical role in upholding segregation of the races in the Democratic strongholds of the Deep South.
The Democratic Party has historically been quite comfortable separating humans by skin color. Today’s racial quotas are just the latest manifestation of that peculiar fetish, but let’s not go there.
In any case, if you were truly frightened by Republican efforts to suppress voters’ access in Georgia and elsewhere, “recognized experts” Marc Elias and Tiffany Muller have a solution. This summer, for example, they invited one and all to a virtual (Zoom) “Conversation about Voter Rights, Redistricting, and HR-1” (the “For The People Act”). This conversation was labeled “Fighting Voter Suppression.”
The experts’ goal, they claimed, was to “protect our Democracy” and “to ensure that every citizen has access to voting.” Can’t argue with that. Certainly bipartisan and objective, right?
Not so much.
So, before we examine those particular claims, let’s take a close look at the two champions of democracy — “experts” Marc Elias and Tiffany Muller.
Marc Elias is the founder of Democracy Docket, a left-wing, oops, I mean “progressive” pressure group. He was a prominent lawyer with Perkins Coie, the law firm that Hillary Clinton used as a front to cover her presidential campaign’s involvement and funding (through Fusion GPS) of the infamously scandalous and grossly inaccurate (yet immeasurably damaging) Steele dossier that hurt the presidency of Donald Trump so profoundly.
Mr. Elias served as general counsel to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign as well as that of John Kerry in 2004. So he is not only an “expert,” but also an extremely partisan Democratic bigwig who works exclusively (as far as I know) for the Democratic Party. Anything he may say or do to “protect the integrity of the vote” or “fight suppression of voters’ rights by (those dastardly] Republicans” would be, let me see, what’s the official term? … Aah, that’s it: a lot of hooey.
Mr. Elias authored many of the techniques that were introduced in the 2020 election, such as mass mail-in balloting, unsupervised drop boxes and unrestrained ballot harvesting, along with quickly assembled rules that worked to stymie the ability of anyone to conduct a fruitful audit — forensic or otherwise — of the results of various elections around the country, particularly those in the “battleground” states.
For example, separating envelopes from the enclosed mail-in ballots immediately was implemented, ensuring there could be no chain of custody for any of those ballots. They would simply be counted as legitimate, and no one could prove otherwise.
Mr. Elias has every right to be a partisan and to do whatever (lawfully, legally) it takes to get his candidate across the finish line, but one should know if one is inclined to attend such “conversations” in the future and is objective in any way, that he is a hired gun and represents his Democratic clients extremely effectively. He is definitely not a disinterested party, though he is an expert in compiling votes for his candidates through the use of election chaos and uncertainty.
Tiffany Muller is president of a group called End Citizens United/Let America Vote Action Fund. She is also a fervent left-wing activist, particularly for the LBGT crowd. She contributes to Huff Post and is glowingly described there as having “a record of empowering the progressive grassroots to achieve ambitious goals.”
Ms. Muller served as deputy political director at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. She is also a proponent of the “For the People Act.” (Newspeak translation: “Rules for Ensuring Democrat Victories Every Time, All the Time”).
Why, you may wonder, are they so worked up? Do they believe they can prove that Democrat Stacey Abrams is the legitimately elected governor of Georgia and that the 2018 election was stolen from her?
So what is it then that has gotten these folks’ panties in such a twist?
Their panties are not twisted at all.
Their “outrage” is an orchestrated plan to seal into permanence the make-it-easier-to-cheat election components that Mr. Elias worked so hard (and so successfully, I must add) to implement during the 2020 election. They’ve worked up a pseudo-righteous indignation (Jim Crow 2.0!) against Republican attempts to redress those pandemic-induced changes.
They feign outrage at Georgia’s new voter integrity protection law, which, among other things, tightens restriction on the use of the kinds of unsupervised drop boxes that in 2020 allowed anyone at any time to stuff them with ballots, sight unseen. The new law reduces the number of them and requires each drop box to be placed in a voting location, open and available only during in-person voting.
Another requirement in the new law for absentee or by-mail voting is that “In order to confirm the identity of the voter, such form shall require the elector to provide his or her name, date of birth, address as registered, address where the elector wishes the ballot to be mailed, and the number of his or her Georgia driver’s license or identification card…”
If the idea of “Voter ID” makes you tremble in fear or opine that it would be too much to ask of your largest voting bloc to acquire some kind of photo identification, you should know that in, say, Norway, in order to vote one must present a photo ID.
In Northern Ireland, you’ll need a photo ID to vote.
Germany insists you show your state-issued voter ID.
France, Israel, Mexico, Iceland and a host of other countries require some form of photo identification in order to cast a ballot. And why not? Voter integrity is at stake, as is an honest result.
Why would anyone resist this simple requirement unless they wanted their constituency to vote more than once and/or also plot to include non-eligible resident votes?
The only thing this group is angry about is that the Georgia Republican legislature tried its best to reduce the ability of individuals and/or groups to cheat without detection.
AN ELECTION WEEKEND
In any case, much of this hooey could be dispensed with by simply holding an “Election Day” as we once did in the good old days
More time is needed, you say?
Well then, how about an “Election Weekend?” Three days of voting should be enough for even the most immobile to get themselves to the polls by foot, bicycle, wheelchair, horse, car, bus, plane, taxi, tractor or mule-driven wagon. That would reduce the number of “absentee” votes to a bare minimum and the same requirements could then stay in place to protect the integrity of those votes.
I’m no expert, but what would be even better than a conversation about voter suppression would be a push for simpler and shorter in-person voting …
Oh, and a requirement to identify oneself with a photo ID …
And the creation of an indestructible paper trail for each vote.
James Buckley is a longtime Montecito resident. He welcomes questions or comments at email@example.com.