Alex Blaze

Get your voter suppression on

Filed By Alex Blaze | October 28, 2008 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Allen Raymond, Barack Obama, black, Democrats, election campaigns, John McCain, john sununu, North Carolina, palin, Republicans, Virginia, voter fraud, voter suppression, voting, white, Wisconsin

Republicans started working on voter suppression for this season a while ago, focusing mainly on big-scale efforts like passing laws to require more specific paperwork for voting, fighting against bills that would make voting easier, like early voting, trying to just scratch names off the ballot rolls in battleground states, and just asking judges to throw away ballots.

But now they've moved on to more specific and ridiculous efforts, and a few examples are after the jump, like this flier they put up in Virginia telling Republicans to vote on November 4th and Democrats on the 5th.

virginia flier.jpg

The police are looking into it, but it doesn't matter. The damage is already done and these people, if they're ever caught, won't have to face any consequences until after the election.

Here's another letter sent out in Wisconsin that apparently convinced a few people that it was from Obama:


Well, that speaks for itself. It's the on-paper version of that McCain campaign volunteer who scratched a backwards "B" into her face claiming that a black man did it (who was it that said this person should have lowered the bar and tried for a good "O"?).

Here's someone who's actually trying to, literally, throw votes away:

Three Hialeah voters say they had an unusual visitor at their homes last week: a man who called himself Juan, offering to help them fill out their absentee ballots and deliver them to the elections office.

The voters, all supporters of Democratic congressional candidate Raul Martinez, said they gave their ballots to the man after he told them he worked for Martinez. But the Martinez campaign said he doesn't work for them.

Juan ''told me not to worry, that they normally collected all the ballots and waited until they had a stack big enough to hand-deliver to the elections department,'' said voter Jesus Hernandez, 73. 'He said, `Don't worry. This is not going to pass through the mail to get lost.'''

Hernandez said he worries his ballot was stolen or destroyed. He and two other voters told The Miami Herald that the man was dispatched by a woman caller who also said she worked for Martinez. But the phone number cited by the voters traces back to a consultant working for Martinez's rival, Republican congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart.

Martinez's campaign manager, Jeff Garcia, has asked the Miami-Dade state attorney's office to investigate.

In Texas, an email is going around giving out false information about how to fill in a ballot:

"For those who normally vote 'Straight Democratic', please pay close attention!!!!!" states the e-mail, obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press.

"I was informed this weekend by a group of Obama volunteers that when voting for the presidential candidate this November, you have to make sure you punch Barack's name first, then proceed to punch 'Straight Democratic' or else the vote for the president won't count," the e-mail says.

Quite the opposite, says Texas Democratic Party spokesman Hector Nieto said.

With eSlate, punching the button for presidential candidate Obama after punching the straight-ticket button will actually cancel the straight-ticket vote, Nieto said.

Which is the opposite from North Carolina, where one has to fill in the presidential race and a straight-party option.

There are many more stories and even more are sure to come out. These tricks do influence elections - in 2002 John Sununu was elected Senator of New Hampshire because Republican operatives shut down the phone bank used by Democrats to get out the vote. The architect behind it went to jail, but that doesn't matter - the damage was already done. (He's apparently bitter about the whole thing now because the Republican Party abandoned him, but he should know that there's no honor among those sorts.)

Yeah, the system just doesn't work. These people don't believe in democracy and know they can't win if people actually vote their own interests, so what else should we expect here?

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Many fear something different. I feel sad for these people who are so desperate to maintain what they believe to be the status quo that they would resort to dishonest methods to convince the less savvy on how to vote.

Hopefully, newspapers are doing their part to correct the errors. If not, Republican politicians would benefit by showing leadership and integrity by pointing out the false adds.

Will either of these actions happen? I leave the question open.

All ways to gin the system. Isn't it sad that so many have put thought into how to cheat as versus working hard to win honestly?