"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality." --Bishop Desmond Tutu

Friday, October 10, 2008

The fraud that is voter fraud

We're hearing more and more about ACORN these days. On the stump, McCain and Palin are flogging this hard. But it's a fraud.

It's another GOP distraction to divert your attention from the failing economy, the endless war in Iraq, the crumbling war in Afghanistan, the NSA eavesdropping scandal and a host of other Republican failures.

Josh Marshall over at TPM has a good summary of the current situation. As he so rightly points out that
It's important to note that in many of the recent ACORN cases that have gotten the most attention it's ACORN itself that has turned the people in who did the fake registrations. These reports start buzzing through the right-wing media every two years and every time the anecdotal reports of 'thousands' of fraudulent registrations turns out, on closer inspection, to be either totally bogus themselves or wildly exaggerated. So thousands of phony registrations ends up being, like, twelve.
These apocryphal numbers that the wingnuts and their mouthpieces fling about like "thousand" of phony registrations are a lie. Big surprise.

Vote registration fraud is a limited and relatively minor problem in the US today. But it is principally an administrative and efficiency issue. It is has little or nothing to do with people casting illegitimate votes to affect an actual election. That's the key. What you're hearing right now from Fox News, the New York Post, John Fund and the rest of the right-wing bamboozlement chorus is a just another effort to exploit, confuse and lie in an effort to put more severe restrictions on legitimate voting and lay the groundwork to steal elections.

It's that simple.

This all goes back to the 2006 election when a front-group, American center for Voting Rights, objected and raised a lot of ruckus about phony registrations. Richard Hasen wrote back in 2007

The Justice Department devoted unprecedented resources to ferreting out fraud over five years and appears to have found not a single prosecutable case across the country. Of the many experts consulted, the only dissenter from that position was a representative of the now-evaporated American Center for Voting Rights.
Read his article that talks about this now defunct organization and their connections to the GOP.

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