How Much Voter Fraud Is There In Kansas? This Much: 0.00001156069

On a local radio show in Wisconsin, a retiring Republican state senator, Dale Schultz, told the truth about his party and its desire to keep voter turnout as low as possible. He said that the so-called “reforms” that Republicans are fixated on and are ramming through legislatures, including his own, are “all predicated on some belief there is a massive fraud or irregularities,” but that is something that his fellow Republicans “have failed miserably at demonstrating.” Then Schultz really dug down to the heart of the matter:

It’s just sad when a political party has so lost faith in its ideas that it’s pouring all of its energy into election mechanics. We should be pitching as political parties our ideas for improving things in the future rather than mucking around in the mechanics and making it more confrontational at the voting sites and trying to suppress the vote.

The only idea the Republican Party has any faith in at all happens to be how to suppress the vote more efficiently. And one is tempted to admire the tenacity with which Republicans pursue that one anti-democratic, anti-American idea, even if one is disgusted by it.

And speaking of disgusting, Kansas’ secretary of state, Kris Kobach, one of the most disgusting politicians in the country, won a major, but hopefully temporary, victory  for voter suppression, as the AP reported yesterday:

Federal officials must help Kansas and Arizona enforce laws requiring new voters to document their U.S. citizenship, a federal judge ruled Wednesday, in a decision that could encourage other Republican-led states to consider similar policies.

Kobach said,

This is a really big victory, not just for Kansas and Arizona but for all 50 states. Kansas has paved the way for all states to enact proof-of-citizenship requirements.

Mind you there is exactly no evidence that hordes of non-citizens are voting in Kansas or anywhere else. Okay, that isn’t quite right. Kobach himself admits that he has found “20 or so” of those mysterious non-citizens on Kansas voter registration rolls. I’ll leave you to do the math as to what percentage of 1.73 million registered voters that number 20 represents. On second thought, no I won’t. Here’s the percentage:

0.00001156069

That tiny number, which roughly corresponds to the amount of patriotism found in all of the GOP kill-the-vote measures around the country, is what Kris Kobach wants you and me to think is motivating him. But even without looking at that tiny number we know better. Even without Wisconsin Republican Dale Schultz, we know the truth. Republicans are fresh out of policy ideas that appeal to a majority of Americans. Fresh out. The only thing they have left, as part of a desperate effort to stave off the coming demographic tide nationwide, is to make it harder for folks, many of them potential Democrats, to vote.

And needless to say, the extra proof-of-citizenship requirement, that unnecessary hindrance to voting that Kobach is so proud of, will make it tough for some poor and elderly voters to comply with. It’s not easy for some people to come up with the money to produce, if they even exist, the documents that will assure Kobach that they are white Republicans, or excuse me, American citizens. And some of those people, perhaps many of them, won’t even bother to try. It’s hard enough to get citizens who have all their papers in order to exercise their right to vote, let alone get people to register who don’t have the paperwork handy to prove they’re Americans.

All of this is just one example of why this polling chart on political party ID looks like it does:

party id

Down, down, down, goes that red line. And as far as I’m concerned, it can go all the way down to hell, where the Republican Party, as we know it today, certainly belongs.

3 Comments

  1. And of course the GOP’s attitude is not restricted to domestic issues. Even as they tout themselves as the party of National Defense and Patriotism, some of them have been publicly disrespecting the president for not being “stronger” relative to the Russian takeover of Crimea. Some patriotism! Just as in Wisconsin’s Shultz’s example they fail to offer their own ideas on what to do, thus putting politics ahead of the nation’s interest. Except for a few hawks like John McCain of course. I’m convinced now that had he been elected president in 2012 we would already have been at war in Libya, Syria, Egypt, and now probably in Ukraine.

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  2. King Beauregard

     /  March 20, 2014

    I’m a little skeptical about that party affiliation poll: I would bet anything that a great many of those Independents are Republicans who have just enough sense to be ashamed of being Republicans, but not enough to reject the Republicans on Election Day. It’s like people claiming to be Libertarians: an awful lot of them know it’s a shameful thing to be a Republican, but if they can give themselves a fancy name, they feel like they’re a cut above the typical Republican idiot. (Spoiler: they’re not.)

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    • Yeah, I don’t doubt many independents are embarrassed Republicans (though I’ve met a lot of independents who were really embarrassed Democrats, when it comes down to it). But there is a strong element of shame that is attached to the GOP, which is my point. Some of that shame lands on Tea Party types who want the Republican Party to stay white and stay right and who don’t think it is sufficiently white and right. But a lot of that shame comes upon folks who hold their noses on election day, as you suggest, and who, despite the obvious flaws, vote for Republican candidates because the idea of voting for a Democrat is just too much to bear.

      As for libertarians, I have in the past written much about the sophomoric philosophy that serves as a basis for that political persuasion. I do think there is a genuine libertarian group out there who does not like the Republican Party mostly because of its religious leanings and reactionary position on social issues. This group holds positions that would make a lot of evangelical Republicans wince. But there are a lot of “revised” Republicans who have sort of adopted a cartoonish Randian economic philosophy and married that to their social issue preferences. And those folks certainly do “feel like they’re a cut above” the typical Republican.

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