Sunday, October 31, 2004


More Republican election shenanigans. NBC had a report this morning saying they're also going to challenge a bunch of new registrations in West Philadelphia, too, but I can't find an article about that.

...just to clear something up - of course there are some fake voter registrations out there. Any time you have paid voter registration workers there's a decent chance you're going to get some made up cards, as is the case with paid petition signature gatherers. But, in these situations voter registration fraud has nothing to do with actual voter fraud or any intent to commit voter fraud. No one will try to vote as "Mickey Mouse."

The Republicans are doing everything possible to cast as wide a net as they can to a) plant doubt about the accuracy of voting b) call the Democrats the party of "voter fraud" c) slow down the voting as much as possible in urban areas because they don't like it when black people vote and d) set the stage for legal challenges after the fact. With a little luck they may manage to find an actual incident of voter fraud or two on election day, and you can bet that's all we'll hear about.

Make sure to check out the voting page at eriposte and Jack Hitt's This American Life piece. Hitt had the Republicans send him the "worst" stuff they had, and here's what he got:

He sent me a copy. It's all newspaper clips, many of them unverified charges. There are a few that check out. There really was, for example, this white guy working for an outfit affiliated with the NAACP, who registered voters under names like Mary Poppins and Jeffrey Dahmer, and it's true, he was paid in crack cocaine. Very bad... and a great story. And then there was the Colorado guy who registered himself 35 times. Also true. Also very bad. But the reason you're going to be hearing about these two examples over and over in the offical Republican talking points in the next few days is that that's the best they've got in their hundreds of pages.

Strange enough, reading the very stories they sent often undercut their main argument. For example, that Colorado guy? Here's a line from the article the GOP sent me: "Just because you register someone 35 times, doesn't mean they vote 35 times." Or, here's another one: "Election officials of both parties say that bad registrations do not necessarily translate into election day fraud. New identification laws, as well as signature checks, make ballot box stuffing extremely difficult." Let me repeat: these are quotes from the official Republican vote fraud press packet.