Wednesday, December 14, 2005

More Dead in Ohio

A law that will make democracy all but moot in Ohio is about to pass the state legislature and to be signed by its Republican governor. Despite massive corruption scandals besieging the Ohio GOP, any hope that the Democratic party could win this most crucial swing state in future presidential elections, or carry its pivotal U.S. Senate seat in 2006, are about to end.

HB3's most publicized provision will require positive identification before casting a vote. But it also opens voter registration activists to partisan prosecution, exempts electronic voting machines from public scrutiny, quintuples the cost of citizen-requested statewide recounts and makes it illegal to challenge a presidential vote count or, indeed, any federal election result in Ohio. When added to the recently passed HB1, which allows campaign financing to be dominated by the wealthy and by corporations, and along with a Rovian wish list of GOP attacks on the ballot box, democracy in Ohio could be all but over.

The GOP is ramming similar bills through state legislatures around the U.S., starting with Georgia and Indiana. The ID requirements in particular have provoked widespread opposition from newspapers such as the New York Times. The Times, among others, argues that the ID requirements and the costs associated with them, constitute an unconstitutional discriminatory poll tax.

But despite significant court challenges, the Republicans are forcing changes in long-standing election laws that have allowed citizens to vote based on their signature alone. Across the U.S., GOP Jim Crow laws will eliminate millions of Democratic voters from the registration rolls. In swing states like Ohio, such ballots are almost certain to be crucial.

A comment at the end of the piece writes: "I almost wish this wasn't so well-written."

I agree.

And the noose tightens, and rich white men rejoice.



Blogger boni said...

I hope Diebold self-destructs in this fraud investigation.
The Republicans have no end of hubris. What the Hell are the people in Ohio doing about this? I guess this proves that if you are the ruling party, you can ram anything through you want.

4:04 PM, December 14, 2005  
Blogger Philip Morton said...

The reason we have three branches of government is so that this isn't supposed to happen. The oath of office is to protect the constitution, not change it, not make changes in law that are unconstitutional. But the GOP has no hesitation if it assures their power, and would bring fire and brimstone to the media if the Dems were doing it against them.

10:16 PM, December 14, 2005  
Blogger Cranky Yankee said...

It's the only way they can win. It happened twice, for christ sake! They can't run on their record. They claim to run on ideas, which is ludicrous, and lords knows they can't govern. This last year has proven that. They rig the game and apply their wedges as if this were a game.

There will be a tipping point when the under class will no longer stand for such systematic disenfranchisement. Someday there will be hell to pay.

5:48 AM, December 15, 2005  
Blogger United We Lay said...

This is why I'm so damn frustrated!

What happens when the tipping point comes and how do we make it come faster?

6:48 PM, December 15, 2005  
Blogger Cranky Yankee said...

Maybe we'll get out and vote in the numbers like the Iraqis.

Far too often disaffection leads to apathy and withdrawal from the process. It's easy to fall into that trap and use the circumstance as a self perpetuating excuse.

That is one of the reasons you see such high crime rates in severely disaffected groups. Why should they respect the laws of a society that doesn't include them? It's a self-destructive rationalization, but it is none the less.

7:44 PM, December 15, 2005  
Blogger boni said...

Did you see that Barack Obama gave a speech about how the Republicans practice Social Darwinism?
Check it out here:

9:46 PM, December 15, 2005  
Blogger United We Lay said...

I understand the Yeharr now. It's cathartic.

4:28 PM, December 16, 2005  

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