Friday, September 23, 2011

"Birds Do It, Bees Do It . . . "

“Even educated stoners do it. Let’s do it. Let’s get IDs.” IDs sufficient to identify a legitimate voter, at least. Apologies to Cole Porter for torturing his lyrics. Several states have found themselves in the midst of a heated debate concerning pending or existing legislation which requires that a voter have valid photo ID in order to register to vote and/or cast a ballot.

Republican primary candidate Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, largely because of his high profile, is among those in the line of fire, but he has plenty of company. It seems that requiring a valid photo ID is a racist plot to prevent black and Hispanic folks from casting a ballot (for the Democrats). Before these laws were passed, all a voter had to do was show a utility bill, bank statement, paycheck stub or something like that. And clearly those things are absolute proof that the person submitting them is the actual person named in the documents. It’s also clear proof that they are non-felons, legal citizens, and over the voting age. Isn’t it?

This is such patent nonsense that it has stirred Democrats and “civil rights advocates” to new heights of hysteria. Clearly, the legislation is designed to protect the integrity of the ballot box, and to prevent non-citizens and those otherwise ineligible to vote from affecting the outcome of an election. It’s even meant to keep long-dead citizens of Chicago away from the voting booths. That doesn’t deter the "one man-several votes" crowd from pulling out all the stops to prevent such sensible measures.

To listen to these people, conservatives and Republicans want to bring back the days of voting tests, poll taxes, and property-ownership requirements (not a bad idea by the way, but that’s a whole other story). Their argument is also stealthy [reverse] racism. According to their thinking, even stoners will give up the munchies long enough to go and get a valid ID, but blacks and Hispanics just don’t have the time, energy, will, money, or smarts to go and get a free state-issued photo ID. Most states will waive the fee for an ID if the registrant is financially incapable of paying it. And there are plenty of volunteers to pick the registrants up and take them to the proper issuing office. ACORN got beaucoup federal and state bucks for doing just that.

It’s really quite simple. The Democrats rely heavily on voters whose only stake in the Republic is what freebies they can get. Although percentage-wise, blacks and Hispanics fit into this category more heavily than other racial and ethnic groups, the largest hard number of people who fit is poor whites. But regardless of who does or does not fit into the category of freeloaders, official state ID’s are available easily and if necessary, for free. While protecting their right to have anybody, no matter what, cast a Democratic ballot, the “No ID” crowd is actually insulting responsible blacks and Hispanics while encouraging illegal and/or multiple voting.

I see much the same problem with the constant easing of restrictions on voting by mail (or worse, by the internet). Voting is a vital civic responsibility, not for the lazy or uncaring. It requires constant monitoring to maintain the integrity of the ballot box, and it should require expending the minimal amount of energy necessary to get one's butt out of the chair, off the sofa, and down to the polling precinct. But that is also a topic fit for another full article at a later date.


Tennessee Jed said...

we are having that very debate in Tennessee, Hawk, and for the very reasons you outline. The Democrats here keep saying there is no evidence of any significant voter fraud, and decrying the expense and hardship on poor victim classes. It's almost as if all the talking points papers have already been written and filed and ready to use in oped pages accross the country.

T-Rav said...

Even a glance at the statistics should be enough to make one suspicious of voter fraud, especially where the inner cities are concerned. For example, St. Louis cast 240,000 votes in 2008 (220,000 of them for Obama), out of a total population of 350,000 tops. By contrast, my home county cast about 13-14,000 votes out of 30,000 total. In other words, STL would have needed virtually 100% of all voters to cast their ballots, which let me tell you, is impossible, as a good many of them can't be bothered to put down their crack pipe on a day ending in "y."

That's just one example. Anyone with two functioning brain cells ought to be well aware that voter fraud is widespread and pervasive.

Tehachapi Tom said...

Corruption is the word.
Mexico is corrupt, and in that country it spreads from politics to business to every day grass roots life.
In the USA corruption was an exception not the rule. In those days we prospered and developed the greatest nation that the world has ever seen.
Fast forward to step over the slow slide we have allowed and what do you see.
USA corruption, and it is growing much faster now than at any time in the past.
Our politics and our business worlds are tainted for sure if not thoroughly infected with the germ of corruption.
Unless there is not a strong dose of an anti-corruptiogical we will just become a larger Mexico. Such a dosage will need to be followed by a powerful vaccination to create the anti-bodies that will insure against a reinfection.

AndrewPrice said...

Yeah, the idea that this is voter suppression is a joke. It's all an attempt by Democrats to keep open their lines of fraud.

(BTW, I did manage to do both a debate summary and a mystery film article for today... see you all at 4:00 EST. I'm off to the doctor!)

T-Rav said...

By the way, LawHawk, I totally agree. Let's bring back property requirements and voting tests.

rlaWTX said...

can we go with tax payers instead of property owners? I fit the former category, not the latter...

as for the ID and all other "are you who you say you are" issues - how is it that major companies have computer programs that practically run the world, and the US gummit can't have one that track immigrants/ Visa holders /etc?? It doesn't need to data mine or tie IRS and ID together, but, heck, an Excel spreadsheet would be better than the current system.

Tehachapi Tom said...

Another thought on the voter Id issue.
If I need a permit to carry a concealed pistol.
What could possibly be wrong with a permit to vote.
The latter is far more dangerous than the former.
The pistol permit doesn't use a photo it has a thumb print. By using a thumbprint we would shield those who are not photogenic from being offended.
Incidentally the pistol permit restricts carrying the pistol if using drugs or alcohol which would also be good to include on the voting permit.

Unknown said...

Tennessee: Oddly, California hasn't gotten into the debate yet, though I can't figure out why. But I'm guessing that the first time someone challenges a voter to prove who he is, we'll leap to the front of the line. I first registered to vote on the day I turned twenty-one (no eighteen-year olds then), and I did have to show ID. But that was in 1965, and I've never been required to prove who I am since. I've moved multiple times, including out-of-state, and I've been voting by mail for a decade. I've often wondered how easy it would have been (pre-computer) to simply vote in each of the districts I had registered in if I cared to fly all over the state on election day. That would be a lot more difficult today.

Unknown said...

T-Rav: The precinct in Chicago that I was born in (but left, long before I came of voting age), gave Hubert Humphrey a margin of victory over Nixon that was larger than the total number of registered voters in the precinct. Even with my limited math skills, I know that's impossible.

Unknown said...

Tehachapi Tom: The issue of illegal voting is different from state to state and even county to county. We in California tend to notice the fraud with undocumented aliens simply because the numbers are so large. In other places, the issue doesn't even involve illegal immigrants voting because their numbers are so much lower. There are many other reasons why a voter might be disqualified, and illegal immigration is just one of them.

The culture of corruption is indeed a major element, and requiring a valid state-issued photo ID could cut into that problem. But in the big picture, it would only address the voting issue. It won't solve the overall problem of lack of respect for the workings of honest government.

In the long run, this particular facet of the issue has nothing whatever to do with race or ethnicity, and everything to with maintaining the integrity of the voting booth.

Unknown said...

Andrew: The Democrats are right about one thing. This is about voter suppression, but not the way they mean it. It's about suppressing illegal voting, unqualified voters voting, dead voters voting, and voters voting more than once in the same election. The illegal, unqualified, dead and multiple-voting voters are the core of the Democratic Party.

Good luck at the doctor. I think they have doctors in Bakersfield, but up here, we have to rely on our local medicine men. LOL

Unknown said...

T-Rav: We can dream, but we'll never see those requirements again. The only requirement I would not want to see brought back is the poll tax, since a free American citizen should not be required to pay for his right to vote (he already pays for that in a myriad of ways).

Those who go through the legitimate process of becoming naturalized citizens of the US are required to pass a test demonstrating basic knowledge of American history and governmental/constitutional functions. I see nothing wrong with requiring such a standardized test for natural-born citizens who want to vote. The problem is that most of our recent college graduates couldn't pass such a test.

Unknown said...

rlaWTX: We'll never see the property-ownership requirement again, and probably shouldn't. For one thing, I would have been disqualified from voting during my entire last twenty-five year sojourn as a renter in San Francisco. That would have eliminated one of the four Republican voters in the City. LOL

As for the other issue, we would have to distinguish between tax-filers and taxpayers. Democrats tend to lump them together, even though approximately 50% of today's voters end up not paying any taxes at all. If you're a taxpayer, you get to vote. If you're a tax eater, you don't (with waivers of course for certain legitimate non-payers such as retirees on tax-exempt funds). That's another reason to scrap the entire current tax codes and start all over with a basic income tax that everyone pays. That way, the rich and the poor pay their "fair share" and they both get to vote.

At least Philadelphia doesn't have this problem at all. They have the Black Panthers to guard the polling places, guaranteed by Holder's Department of Justice.

Unknown said...

Tehahcapi Tom: Thanks a lot. Now you've raised another issue that we are already addressing in several of the states. Is a photo ID a valid ID for voting purposes if the prospective voter is wearing a burqa or a hijab in the photo, thus obscuring any ability to identify the voter from the picture? Hugo Chavez, Hosni Mubarak, Jane Fonda, and I would all look exactly the same in one of those photo IDs. But only one of us is actually qualified to vote in an American election. LOL

Unknown said...

In case anyone is wondering if I'm being hypocritical after admitting I vote by mail, I plead innocence. Where I live now, the closest polling place would be the post office, which is a twenty-five minute drive on tortuous mountain roads. But I do it in actuality because it's convenient and legal. If they changed the law tomorrow to require physical presence, I would do it without complaint as I did for most of my voting life.

So why did I start voting by mail in the first place in San Francisco when I lived a block and a half from the polling place? Simple--I'm getting too old to be arrested regularly for disturbing the peace. The last time I voted at the physical polling place, I went ballistic on the poll workers. One of the requirements of identifying a polling place is the proper display of the American flag. I arrived to find Old Glory ignominiously hanging sideways, attached to a stucco wall with masking tape, one side of which had come loose.

Half the poll-workers could barely speak English, and couldn't understand what I was saying or why I was so angry. That only made me angrier. When I got done, I went back, took a Polaroid picture, headed for the downtown office of the Registrar of Voters, and raised another ruckus there. So you see, for the sake of the public's peace, I now vote by mail.

Unknown said...

Unrelated Note: The Solyndra execs have just taken the Fifth. I can't imagine why (wink, wink). Of course, if they didn't take the Fifth and accidentally admitted to criminal activity, who would prosecute them? The Holder Justice Department? Stop laughing.

T-Rav said...

LawHawk, I have never yet voted by mail, despite spending most of the past three years several hours away from my home address. I generally just fill out an absentee ballot when I'm home a few weeks before the election, which has served me well so far. It may not do so in the upcoming primaries, but then my vote might be wasted regardless. So oh well.

Unknown said...

T-Rav: They've made voting by mail so easy in California that it has become difficult to get an absentee ballot. It's an odd twist, since they both accomplish the same thing, but if you want an absentee ballot, you have to fill out an affidavit, but if you want a mail-in ballot, you just check the box on your sample ballot and send it off to the Registrar of Voters. From then on, it's permanent until you change it.

patti said...

in texas, when this came up for the vote, one of the arguments is that it would hurt old people. huh?! most of us where like, hurt 'em, they're the ones who show up with ALL their ids.

Unknown said...

Patti: There are those who would say that we oldsters carry all that ID so we can remember who we are and where we live. "Hang on just a second. I do know my name. It's right here on my driver's license." LOL

But you're absolutely right. Anybody over the age of 40 who doesn't have a battery of IDs should be automatically suspect. In Texas, legitimate citizens all have photo IDs just so that they can brag that they're from Texas.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I'm glad the Republican legislatures across the country are finally starting to fight back on this issue. The one thing that should be beyond reproach in our country is the electoral system and it's not... not at all.

Unknown said...

Andrew: As I mentioned in passing to T-Rav, California has been remarkably free of voter scandals. There have been a few mini-dustups in East Los Angeles over illegal immigrant voting, but on balance, our system is remarkably clean. I just can't imagine that this will last, given that the state is becoming poorer, less literate, and more Democratic. I applaud those states with Republican legislatures that are cleaning out the Democrat stalls. Perhaps we'll now see fewer Al Frankens in Congress.

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