A liberal argument in support of voter ID laws

A liberal argument in support of voter ID laws

BallotAn article in this space over the weekend highlighting multiple cases of voter fraud in Ohio generated the following reaction from reader Eric Ward, who occasionally comments and is generally hostile to the views espoused in this column:

Aww…let’s see, Colin Small, a former employee of Strategic Allied Consulting who worked for the Republican party found guilty of dumping voter registration forms in both Virginia and Florida that were for Democrats during the 2012 election. Nine Florida counties reported in September that hundreds of voter registration forms submitted by Sproul’s firm contained irregularities such as suspicious, conflicting signatures and missing information.

n [sic] Nevada, 56-year-old Roxanne Rubin, a Republican, was arrested on Nov. 2 for allegedly trying to vote twice, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. The newspaper quoted a report by an investigator with the Nevada Secretary of State’s Office that said Rubin “was unhappy with the process; specifically in that her identification was not checked.”. [sic]

On Tuesday in New Mexico, a Republican poll watcher was taken into police custody after also apparently trying to test the system. According to the Las Cruces Sun-News, the man voted, then obtained a second provisional ballot and announced he was simply “testing the system to see if people could get away with voting twice.”. [sic]

And a viral video uploaded to YouTube in late September showed a young woman who worked for Strategic Allied Consulting registering voters in Colorado and admitting that she was only looking for Republicans. “Well, I’m actually trying to register people for a particular party. Because we’re out here in support of Romney, actually,” the woman said.

I can go on….again, no integrity contained within your party.

The last sentence appears to presume — wrongly, it turns out — that this writer is a registered Republican, but the larger point remains: There are documented cases of voter fraud committed not only by Democrats but by Republicans.

The most significant of these are the cases involving Strategic Allied Consulting. The New York Times ran several stories on the scandalous firm, which the Daily News pointed out shares an address right down to the suite number with Karl Rove’s American Crossroads PAC. Sounds dicey.

After the story (which admittedly was underreported by the right-leaning media) broke, Strategic Allied Consulting released a statement denying that it had “tolerated even minimal violations of election law.” But that, to coin a phrase, is “what they all say.” It was almost identical to the protestations made in 2011 by a Service Employees International Union (SEIU) organizer who was discovered to have had his own hand on the electoral scale, tipping it in favor of the Democrats.

If one wanted to be coy, one could point out that SEIU has 1.9 million members, whereas Strategic Allied (which seems to be out of business) almost certainly had a smaller staff. But size only matters when there is conclusive evidence of wrongdoing. Both anecdotes suggest limited malfeasance, so the point is moot.

What should be done about voter fraud is another matter. One obvious solution would be to issue some sort of nationalized voter identification card that would keep elections honest at both ends of the political spectrum. Yet the U.S. Justice Department has strenuously fought efforts by states to implement such IDs. If as Eric Ward intimates, the crime is even more rampant on behalf of Republican voters, the benefit to Democrats would greatly outweigh the supposed inconvenience the issuance of these cards would impose on minority voters.

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Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy has written for The Blaze, HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.

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