President Donald Trump signed an executive order Thursday forming a commission on voter fraud and elections, an action many Democrats say is aimed at justifying his unfounded voter fraud claims. (“Millions cast illegal ballots, giving Hillary Clinton her huge popular vote margin,” right.) Instead of appointing a blue-ribbon, bipartisan committee of nationally respected sages, the commission will be spearheaded by Vice President Mike Pence and controversial Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Kobach, who helped on the Trump transition team, is a lightning rod for critics who have accused him of extreme racism and having ties to white nationalists.
Kobach has advocated for strict voter identification laws. Riiight. Kansas. By far the worst governed state in the Union. Go there for wisdom.
To be clear, I have never objected to gradually ramping up the requirements that voters show ID. But there are two giant considerations:
(1) there is not evidence at all that this is a major problem requiring urgent-rapid action. Voter fraud has repeatedly been shown to be almost nonexistent.
(2) there is a simple test as to whether the red state GOP legislators, where voter ID laws that have surged, are sincere, or attempting bald-faced suppression of US citizens exercising their rights. What is that simple test? When red states have passed these restrictions, have they also allocated money for compliance assistance?
Whenever the federal government – or most states – apply new regs upon business, there is almost always some provision offering those businesses help in complying with the new regs. Sometimes the help is modest, often it is substantial. But the principle is well-established. Moreover, if a new regulation’s impact hits small fry hard – like mom and pop establishments – then the calls for compliance assistance are compelling! See my earlier posting: Voter ID laws: scam or accountability?
So, here’s the simple test. Have any of the GOP-led state legislatures who passed stiff voter ID laws also passed funds to help poor citizens to GET the IDs they need? Very few actions would be as much a win-win, since getting clear ID will also help poor folks to do banking, establish businesses and lift themselves out of poverty. A concerted effort to help a state’s citizens get ID would be both beneficial and prove that those legislatures were sincere. It would refute the accusation that these laws have one sole purpose – cheating.
Okay, here’s the crux. The on-off switch. The total fact that proves criminality and treason. Not one of these red states have passed even a single penny of compliance assistance, to accompany a stiff, new regulatory burden they slapped on their poorest and most vulnerable citizens. In fact, many of these red – no, they must be called gray – states went on a binge of closing DMV offices “to save money” and mostly in poor or democratic-leaning counties. They made compliance with their own law harder. Deliberately much harder.
Hence the indictment is proved. As it is with the utterly laughable-hypocritical “commission” that Donald Trump just appointed. They are exposed as liars. Cheaters. Betrayers. Hypocrites. Confederates.