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Jul 31, 2012

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polifrog

Actually there is ample proof of our justice department and the Obama administration are actively suppressing the integrity of the vote.

sittinginthemiddle.

Anyhing that will pevent even one Parasite from voting themselves another government handout is a plus for the hard working taxpayers.

HRH

The biggest area of voter fraud is in absentee voting which a voter ID requirement wouldn't address. See http://www.huntingtonnews.net/38845

Doug Clark

Hysteria. News stories consistently point out lack of evidence of voter fraud, and editorial pages (the N&R many times) almost universally denounce Voter ID laws.

The real problem is that most people seriously don't see what's wrong with requiring a photo ID to vote.

Ed Cone

Well, then, nothing to worry about. That's a relief.

I searched for some N&R news articles on this topic, but the Google-Proof Vault does a great job of making the paper's news coverage invisible to the internet.

Doug Clark

There's a lot to worry about, but Republican politicians don't have to worry about voter disapproval. That's the problem.

N&R editorials on this subject are available. So are those from other newspapers. My point is that the media have not given Republicans a pass on this. They are not afraid of being called liberal. This article is simply wrong.

Ed Cone

I think the real argument he's making is for a different approach to news stories on this subject -- not just inserting the corrective information at some point in articles on the issue, but writing stories about the false alarms and the impact of voter suppression. The current frame is off, so coloring the picture better doesn't help much.

Also, sorry for the snarkiness of my previous comment. Someday I'll remember it doesn't work in text boxes.

Doug Clark

I think it's better for reporters to stick to reporting and leave analysis or editorializing to opinion pages. On this issue, there are false alarms on both sides. The claim that requiring photo IDs will disenfranchise 10 percent of the electorate, for example. (I think even if it's only one-half of one percent, it's too many.) Partisans who demand point of view reporting generally want the point of view to match their own.

Lex

One actual case of voter fraud, hot 'n' fresh.

bubba

"News stories consistently point out lack of evidence of voter fraud, and editorial pages (the N&R many times) almost universally denounce Voter ID laws."

Well then, that settles it. Right, Doug.

"The real problem is that most people seriously don't see what's wrong with requiring a photo ID to vote."

Care to elaborate? Or are we just left to guess the meaning of your less-than substantive sound byte.

MojoNixon

It's a de facto poll tax. That's what's wrong with it, Bubblehead.

Sean

mojo, want some jelly with that roll you're on?

justcorbly

1. If there's been such a problem for so many years with voter fraud, why haven't we seen prosecutors bringing charges?

2. We seem to have either media outlets that are so in the tank for one side or the other that they are simply propaganda machines, or we have media outlets who are so wimpy and so afraid of challenging liars that, if they'd been around in 1939, they would have given us shows with titles like, "Hitler: An Extremists, or a Good German?"

sittinginthemiddle.

"It's a de facto poll tax."- Morono


Maybe we should allow these parasites to get a drivers license without any Identification, or board an airplane or open a checking account or buy a house. Maybe we should have a country of total anonymous people? The ignorance of what you people spew is ridiculous.

HRH

When you register to vote, you provide a photo ID. Therefore when you show up at the polls to vote, you don't need to. Simple. SIM, turn away from Fox & Rush, for your own education.

Brian

SIM - Checking accounts, driver's licenses, buying a house or boarding an airplane. None of them basic, fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Try again.

Andrew Brod

Lex, there's now some thinking that voter ID laws like Pennsylvania's will bar some white Republicans, and maybe a lot, from voting as well. I think the new voter ID laws are wrong and unethical regardless of which party they hurt more. But I must admit that it'll be muy amusing if the GOP gets hoisted by its own petard.

TNR's take is slightly different, inferring from the Romney campaign's decision to stop running ads in Pennsylvania that even if the state's law helps the GOP on balance, it won't be enough to turn the state red.

Spag

There is no voter fraud and it doesn't matter anyway, right?

Now about the merits of the phony balance claim...

polifrog

What would we call a tax on people who choose not to vote?

A poll penalty? A poll penalty/tax?

I suspect such a poll 'penalty/tax', as Pelosi might call it, could easily become be a potential source of future voting power for Democrats as it would drive the shiftless dependent class to the polls more than making up for losses in traditional liberal voting blocks elsewhere. Labor, for instance.

Contemplate the moralizing, though. Is coercion of the vote any more moral than erecting barriers to the vote?

I suspect Democrats would find such coercion as moral as ObamaCare coercion. Perhaps even more so.

And I imagine progressives would also find moralizing the ID's necessary for the policing of such a penalty/tax quite easy as the end (near 100% voter turnout) would easily justify the means. I doubt even the necessity of IRS enforcement which would undoubtedly fall more heavily on those least likely to vote, the Democrat's voting block of poor dependents, would be much of a moral hurdle. If troubled American progressives might argue something along the lines of What's the Matter with Kansas? or simply claim, it's for their own good.

As we have learned from our experience with ObamaCare, the end justifies any and all means when it is for their own good.

justcorbly

Only people who aren't white Republicans do bad things, like not vote for Republicans.

Brian

Wonder if that MN difference is offset by illegal GOP votes. Can't tell from that completely one-sided WSJ article, Spag.

bubba

"It's a de facto poll tax. That's what's wrong with it, Bubblehead."

Sorry, Bozo. The problem is real, pernicious, and it debases one of our most important freedoms. Every possible step needs to be implemented to protect the integrity of the vote.

Here are just a few reasons why:

The reality:

"One of the highlights of the True the Vote conference was a speech by Artur Davis, who was a Democratic congressman from Alabama until last year. Davis has been an up-and-coming black Democratic leader, having been selected to second the nomination of Barack Obama at the 2008 Democratic convention in Denver.

...He told me that the voter suppression he most observed in his 68 percent African-American district was rampant fraud in counties with powerful political machines. To keep themselves in power, these machines would frequently steal the votes of members of minority groups.'I know it exists, I’ve had the chance to steal votes in my favor offered to me, and the people it hurts the most are the poor and those without power,' he said.

Davis made it clear in his speech to True the Vote that much of the opposition to voter-ID and ballot-integrity laws is a sad attempt to inject racism into the discussion and intimidate supporters of anti-fraud laws. 'This is not a billy club, this is not a fire hose,'he told his audience while holding up his driver’s license. Where is this notion that if I have a right [to vote], that I don’t have to be bothered with responsibility?' "

More reality, particularly about the potential for double voting:

"In 2005, a bipartisan panel found that 140,000 Florida voters were also registered in other states. Some 60,000 people are also registered in both North and South Carolina. Liberal absentee voting laws have made it possible for these people to vote twice in a national election with no way, not even photo ID, to stop them from doing so. The commission, which was led by Jimmy Carter and James Baker, recommended, among other things, a paper trial for electronic voting machines as well as uniform voter ID requirements. As the executive director of the Carter-Baker commission mentions in the article, only half of eligible voters in the country are registered, and few of them lack photo IDs. The obstacle to voter participation in this country is registration, not a GOP plot to suppress the minority vote."

From the Carter-Baker panel, here's the real issue regarding "voter suppression":

"The report concludes that, despite changes required under the Help America Vote Act of 2002, far more must be done to restore integrity to an election system that suffers from sloppy management, treats voters differently not only from state to state but also within states, and that too often frustrates rather than encourages voters' efforts to participate in what is considered a basic American right."

If efforts to true the vote are such an obnoxious campaign for something that is not a major concern, why are these people encouraging people to report evidence of wrong-doing?

I guess they're just concerned about jack-booted Tea Party thugs equipped with AK47s and huge clubs, standing outside a polling place intimidating poor Obama voters from exercising their rights, right?

And finally, there's the substantial problem detailed here:

"While Democrats dismiss vote fraud as a collective Republican hallucination, a study released Tuesday by the Pew Center for the States confirms the GOP’s concerns. The ghosts in America’s voting machines may be the least of our worries.

Pew has discovered that 1.8 million dead Americans are registered to vote. Perhaps worse, 2.75 million Americans are enrolled in two states each, while 68,725 are signed up in three. Indeed, Pew found, '24 million — one of every eight — active voter registrations in the United States are no longer valid or are significantly inaccurate.'

This is just what America needs in an election year"

.....but no big deal, according to the "experts" above.

There's plenty more to talk about on this issue, but my guess is that we will not get any substance from people like Doug Clark, or the Usual Suspects regarding their clearly unsupportable opinions.


Roch

"There is no voter fraud and it doesn't matter anyway, right?" -- Spag

How would IDs have stopped felons from voting?

HRH

We get it. Acorn registered Mickey Mouse to vote. Shame on Acorn. But Mickey Mouse didn't show up to vote. Neither did all the dead people on the registration books. Voter ID is not the solution.

bubba

"Voter ID is not the solution."

Voter ID is not the problem, and is clearly part of the solution.

Andrew Brod

It's not the solution because there isn't a problem. If any significant number of votes were being stolen, I'd be all for measures to stop it. But as it is, the risk of actual voter fraud is much smaller than the margin of error of voting systems. We should worry more about Florida 2000 than a handful of fraudulent votes. Of course a vote stealer deserves prosecution, but a large redirection of policy? It doesn't make sense.

Moreover, as HRH notes, the Right repeatedly confuses voter-registration fraud with vote fraud. The former happens; the latter is a fear tactic looking (desperately) for a little evidence.

Finally, let's remember the fairly obvious point that an individual has very little to gain from casting a fraudulent vote. It won't change the outcome except in the ultra-rarest cases. It's unlikely to be part of a larger scheme because you can never prove how you voted (in order to be paid for your fraudulent vote).

Economics teaches us that actions that generate small returns tend not to be taken. To believe otherwise is to believe that people follow their self-interest in markets but not in voting, and that's a bit hard to justify, isn't it?

But of course some will try.

bubba

"It's not the solution because there isn't a problem."

From the first link, something all the Deniers never bothered to read:

" 'Unfortunately, the United States has a long history of voter fraud that has been documented by historians and journalists,' Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens wrote in 2008, upholding a strict Indiana voter-ID law designed to combat fraud. Justice Stevens, who personally encountered voter fraud while serving on various reform commissions in his native Chicago, spoke for a six-member majority. In a decision two years earlier clearing the way for an Arizona ID law, the Court had declared in a unanimous opinion that 'confidence in the integrity of our electoral processes is essential to the functioning of our participatory democracy. Voter fraud drives honest citizens out of the democratic process and breeds distrust of our government. Voters who fear their legitimate votes will be outweighed by fraudulent ones will feel disenfranchised.' "

Those reasons alone are sufficient for the implementation of Voter ID as one measure involved in truing the vote. And., as documented numerous times over, Voter ID is the first place to start doing so.

Somehow, I think Justice Stevens' opinion is likely to be much more credible that Arnold's, or any other of the Deniers above.

Spag

"Can't tell from that completely one-sided WSJ article, Spag."

You mean unlike Ed's one-sided article?

Said article claims that there is no voter fraud problem. It does not single out voter ID fraud. The links in the article about the lack of voter fraud are five years old and refer to lack of evidence of "organized" voter fraud.

And of course we now know that a photo ID will be required to enter the Democratic National Convention because you know, it's important that you are who you say you are when casting a vote to nominate Barack Obama but not important to actually vote for him at the ballot box.

One rule for me, a different rule for thee.

jc

Too funny! Spag nailed these hypocrites again. Sport fucking at its finest.

Ed Cone

Different rules for different things.

Boil it down, and the question here is whether the costs of voting fraud -- as it actually occurs or seems likely to occur -- outweighs the costs of these ID programs.

I have not seen evidence to suggest that the programs are worth the price.

I have seen quotes making it look as if at least some people pushing these programs see them as voter suppression tools. I've seen historical references to fraud, and abstract statements about the badness of fraud, and anecdotes about fraud, but not evidence of a problem that is worth this solution.

bubba

"I have not seen evidence to suggest that the programs are worth the price."

Typical response from someone who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.

The exceptions to the above generally occurs in the case of something that has a place on the favored agenda, like this white elephant of a Greensboro PAC. Then the criteria for a favorable opinion magically changes.

Consider what Cone is saying here: Protecting a constitutional right is not "worth the price". When you consider the evidence that people like him want to ignore, it's pretty clear that it is.

On the other hand, there is no credible reality-based evidence that suggests an amenity like a performing arts center in Greensboro is a viable project.

It's sometimes hard to follow the contorted worldview based logic of their inconsistencies, isn't it?

bubba

Just to recap, Ed Cone and "progressive logic" outweigh the opinions of people like Justice Stevens, and various political operatives that have first hand experience in the matter at hand.

Considering their self-appointed "expert" status, that makes perfect sense to people who have no experience and no common sense real world judgment skills in this area.

Ed Cone

Bubba, we're both talking about protecting the same Constitutional right.

You are saying that the risk of denying some people their right to vote is worth taking, given the risk of diluting the votes of others.

I am saying I don't see evidence that this is the case, and that the risk of disenfranchising voters via these laws seems to present the greater threat to the system we both wish to protect.

Kim

1)Every eligible voter has the opportunity to vote at some point.

2)We are unwilling to deny access to the polls for eligible voters.

3)Costs assosiated with voter fraud must be paid for somehow.

bubba

"I am saying I don't see evidence that this is the case"

Of course you don't. It's too obvious.

People are not denied their right to vote, and positive photo id, or some other form of valid identification is required for virtually every functional public act is life, including applying for public assistance, Medicare, Social Security, veterans benefits, application for insurance, claims for disability or life insurance.......the list is long and extensive.

Why don't "progressives" expend the same time and energy on this as they (sometimes) do on their get out the vote drive? Do Democrats not offer to get people registered, get them to their polling places? Why not use the same programs to get government issued IDs for the few people who do not already them? It's a natural extension of the process already in place.

We all know why that suggestion will be rejected out of hand. Ultimately, they're NOT really concerned about these people, despite the constant moaning and wailing and pious pontification we're constantly hearing. They're interested in demagoging this thing for political purposes.

Roch

"and anecdotes about fraud" -- Ed

And from Sam, anecdotes of fraud which voter ID would not rectify.

polifrog

Ed:

I am saying I don't see evidence that this is the case, and that the risk of disenfranchising voters via these laws seems to present the greater threat to the system we both wish to protect.


Spag provided evidence of voter fraud. You provide no evidence of disenfranchised voters, speaking instead about hypothetical threats and risks.

How does actual evidence not outweigh a hypothetical?

Roch

The "evidence" Sam provided was of people who were not supposed to be voting voting anyway, not of people voting by pretending to be someone else.

bubba

The "evidence" is that "people voting by pretending to be someone else" can be countered with positive voter ID laws.

Truing the vote requires that protections like this are needed. As noted previously, several high level bi-partisan commissions and studies have agreed.

polifrog

I see.

Evidence of voter fraud is not evidence of a diluted vote but conjecture constitutes evidence of the potential of a weighty hypothetical.

Roch

Real slow now...

People who voted illegally while accurately identifying themselves would not be stopped by presenting an ID.

Prattle on.

Spag

People who WOULD vote illegally without an ID would be stopped.

Voter fraud is very difficult to detect as U.S. attorneys have stated in a number of the various referenced articles. That does not mean that it does not happen.

It is quite easy to get a list of registered voters and see how often they vote. A person could easily find someone who is registered but hasn't voted in years, claim that identity and vote in that persons name. It would go undetected forever unless the actual registered voter decided to vote at the same time.

Clearly, there is a large gap between registered voters and actual voters in every election and it is not difficult to sort out the likely voters as any campaign manager or pollster will tell you.

As I recall, Ed's post suggested that it is "phony balance" for the media to pretend that there are two legitimate sides to the debate over voter fraud. The article he links to doesn't claim there is no voter ID fraud, instead it claims there is NO voter fraud.

We know that is not true. Therefore, there are two legitimate sides to the debate and the claim of phony balance is in error.

Further, if we are discussing the merits of photo ID's there are clearly legitimate competing interests involved as even this thread demonstrates. So again, the claim that there is "phony balance" is not sustained.

Insert token to play again.

Roch

"People who WOULD vote illegally without an ID would be stopped." -- Spag

Sloooower...

Some felons may have voted illegally in a state where they are not allowed to vote (per your link). They didn't do so by pretending to be someone else, the allegedly did so because they were not flagged as felons on the voter rolls. Presenting an ID WOULD NOT have stopped them.

Spag

If we were only talking about felons who voted, you would have a point. We aren't. If you read more carefully you will come across the phrase "people who WOULD vote illegally WITHOUT AN ID". This is a reference to those people who would vote illegally unless required to produce an ID, not a reference to felons who could not legally vote with or without an ID.

Roch

"If we were only talking about felons who voted, you would have a point." -- Sam

That's what we are talking about because that's what you offered as evidence of voter fraud.

So where are these people who would vote illegally without an ID? Maybe instead of IDs what your worries call for is a Department of Precognitive Electorate Screening.

Spag

Everything you just mentioned was addressed in my 12:11 post.

I will no longer indulge your bizarre reading comprehension and warped argument dissection. You have earned the title of biggest blowhard in the local blogosphere, and I just don't care anymore about what the Roch is cooking.

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