Very nice piece by Norman Ornstein on suggestions for a new voting regime:
Imagine an intersection with a long history of high-speed car crashes, injuries and fatalities. Authorities put up a traffic light and a speed camera — and the accidents and injuries plummet. A few years later, authorities declare “mission accomplished” and remove the light and speed camera. No surprise, the high-speed crashes and fatalities resume almost immediately.
This is the logic that animated Chief Justice John Roberts’s decision to fillet the Voting Rights Act and that had conservative pundits, including George F. Will, praising the act as they simultaneously exulted in its demise.
As Roberts undoubtedly knew, the chances are slim that our highly polarized Congress can reach agreement on a new formula for the Voting Rights Act (even if lawmakers did, the Roberts court may not accept it). But the decision in Shelby County v. Holder should serve as a springboard to something more ambitious: a drive for a new Voting Rights Act that would go beyond the scope of the original to make voting more universal and accessible to all eligible Americans.
However lawmakers resolve the issue of preclearance, a VRA 2.0 should also include:
●A separate federal ballot.
●A new voter registration regime
●Weekend Election Day.
●A Social Security card as a valid voter ID.
I don’t know that any of this will go anywhere but I think there’s real value in a daily national discussion of why conservatives don’t want people to vote. Meanwhile, conservatives are working hard on this issue. Here’s an example. This ridiculous political operative accused 200,000 Wisconsin voters of committing a felony based on absolutely nothing, and doesn’t seem to be aware of the state constitution in Wisconsin.
In an interview with Milwaukee’s ABC affiliate, the Romney campaign’s Wisconsin co-chair, state Sen. Alberta Darling (R), suggested that her candidate would have won Wisconsin but for the fact that the state’s voter ID law was declared unconstitutional by a state court:
HOST: Do you think photo ID would have made any difference in the outcome of this election?
DARLING: Absolutely, I think so. We’re looking at all different kinds of precincts and all sorts of same-day registrations and I know people will go “oh, we don’t have fraud and abuse in our elections,” but what can’t we have voter ID when the majority of the people in Wisconsin wanted it. We passed it. The governor signed it. Why should one judge in Dane County be able to hold it up?
Well, one judge or the state constitution. Whichever. What do you think she means by “all different kinds of precincts”? Some are better than others? Why not just say “voters”? This elected politician has a problem with some of the voters in her state.
You’ll recall that voter impersonation fraud relies on the idea that a person who is barred from voting actually impersonates (stands in for) a legitimate voter. Conservatives have never explained how these voter impersonation fraud criminals (200,000 in Wisconsin!) determine that the lawful voter won’t show up after them and try to vote, or why these voter impersonation fraud criminals are mysteriously clustered only in the urban areas conservatives lose. Milwaukee is Ground Zero for this epidemic of bad faith accusations and stupidity on voting. The voter impersonation fraud salespeople on the Right and in media have targeted individual voters in Milwaukee with wild accusations for at least a decade, so there’s a lot of information on voter impersonation fraud in Wisconsin. There is no voter impersonation fraud in Wisconsin.
Given events in Texas, and blatant attempts to suppress Latino voters in that state, I can predict with certainty where the next cluster of felonious voter-impersonators will appear. Texas. This crime will move south and west.