Submitted by scharrison on Tue, 08/20/2013 - 6:44pm
“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”
The above is a quote from one of my favorite authors, Isaac Asimov, and I believe it helps to illustrate at least part of the reason Republicans have decided to target college students in their war on voting. While there are both racial and ageist reasons as well, as the young and minorities tend to vote Democrat, we would be ill-advised to ignore the ramifications of anti-intellectualism permeating this issue.
Pointing again to the less than accurate claim that 34 states have a comparable ID law, McCrory added “I’m not sure where this national media is saying that we have the most restrictive laws.”
Perhaps McCrory really doesn’t understand this one, but just for the sake of clarity: the reason the law has earned that title is not just because of its strict photo ID provision, or just because of the cuts to early voting, or even just the end of pre-registration for students in their later teens, but instead because it has all of those suppressive measures rolled into one.
He may not understand it, but the people pulling his strings do. Each one of these items might be arguable on its own, but the combination clearly shows a pattern of voter suppression.
The department lacks subpoena power in voting cases, which means it may have to look for evidence of discriminatory intent in emails that private litigants try to obtain through state freedom of information requests. If that doesn’t work out, the DOJ could try a more subtle strategy. “There's plenty of case law where the courts have found intent of racial discrimination because certain decisions aren't explainable unless you take account of race as the motivation,” Crayton said.
An Associated Press reporter asked the Republican governor how three particular provisions of the bill would help prevent voter fraud — ending same-day voter registration, trimming the period for early voting by a week and eliminating a program that encourages high school students to register to vote in advance of their 18th birthdays.
"I don't know enough, I'm sorry, I haven't seen that part of the bill," McCrory replied.
Sorry is right. The section in question is right around the halfway point in the bill. Which means, if the Deputy Assistant Governor read this in the normal fashion (if he read it at all), he left over half the bill unread. And apparently he needs to study up on election laws:
The Justice Department is preparing to take fresh legal action in a string of voting rights cases across the nation, U.S. officials said, part of a new attempt to blunt the impact of a Supreme Court ruling that the Obama administration has warned will imperil minority representation. In the coming weeks, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is expected to announce that the Justice Department is using other sections of the Voting Rights Act to bring lawsuits or take other legal action to prevent states from implementing certain laws, including requirements to present certain kinds of identification in order to vote.
In their zeal to be considered the most radical Republicans in the nation, the NC GOP is going to attract more legal heat than they can possibly handle. Something they should keep in mind for the next few days as they try to force all their remaining bad ideas down the throats of the people. And that depth of legal scrutiny is bound to uncover some criminal activity as well. See you in court, jackasses.
When these ideas were floating around the General Assembly this spring, I had a chance to ask House Speaker Thom Tillis about the issue of early voting and what changes he would support. Here’s what he had to say in that April 9th interview.
“I think that as long as we do not really restrict the number of days,” Tillis said. “There are some inconsistencies around counties, but I think that early voting is a good thing. In my election, I won before election day in early voting."
Well, if you prove yourself a liar on this issue, you can expect to lose long before the Primary votes are even cast. The two-faced man continues:
"I expect voter ID to be one of first substantive bills that will be sent to the governor," said Rep. Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, likely to be elected to a second term as House speaker. McCrory is a voter ID proponent. Legal challenges by Democrats and civil rights groups are expected.
If that is supposed to have substance, I'd hate to see their idea of a bill lacking substance. At least there is proof that a lot of grease is being stolen...
House Rule 62, in the back of the rule manual, gives lawmakers the ability to cite Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure for matters not covered in the rule. Republican Rep. David Lewis invoked it and Tillis rushed a vote on it to prevent the House from considering Ross' amendment. Why the GOP needed to invoke this rule, as opposed to use its own to defeat the amendment, is unclear.
It's clear enough to me. Moving a few hundred thousand around in the Budget, in order to secure over $4 million in HAVA funds, makes way too much sense to allow people (even Republicans) to vote on it. The level of hubris with such a move is breathtaking.
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