The unvarnished speech
"I don't give different speeches to difference audiences," Romney was widely quoted saying of the
Romney's audience for the speech was not the membership of the august civil rights organization, of course, but rather the Republican base. The party and its increasingly reactionary faithful care not a fig for the
But let's imagine what Romney might have said if, in fact, he were the sort of straight shooter he claims to be. A matter of concern for many African Americans is the campaign Romney's party has launched across the country to take voters of a certain color off the rolls or otherwise keep them away from the polls. I wonder how he might have tried selling that.
He wouldn't dare go there.
The intention of these efforts is nothing less than denying some Americans their voting rights. Romney is a smart enough candidate to know that he cannot publicly align himself with such shenanigans. Rather, he'll let the states do the messy handiwork. And he might just reap the benefits of fewer minority and poor voters casting ballots come November.
Legislation pushing for more stringent voter ID laws often calls for a photo ID or proof of U.S. citizenship instead of people showing their voter registration card. The argument is that fraud is rampant, that the long dead citizens and illegal immigrants are casting ballots thanks to lax election laws.
In reality, that's rarely the case. When voting irregularities are unraveled, often the issue is a clerical error, or a mix-up with two people having the same birth date. People knowingly casting unlawful ballots is rare.
The Brennan Center looked at judicial briefs filed by all the major proponents of stricter voting laws and identified 250 citations of election problems. It then analyzed whether
Numbers like that convinced
Gov. Snyder is right. To members of the highly mobile and technology-savvy middle class, obtaining an extra photo ID, perhaps a passport, might not sound like much of a chore. But for poor or less-educated voters, who sometimes live far from state offices, it can be a challenge. It can be the decisive factor in keeping those voters home on
It should be a red flag to us all when one political party is bleating about voter fraud that it cannot show to exist. But when that party passes laws to eliminate large swaths of the voting public, that looks like nothing less than an assault on democracy.
I wonder what
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