Voter participation and voter integrity are not mutually exclusive.
Not to worry, “confused and worried” Iowa college students. Despite scare-mongering in the media that a new voter ID law will somehow keep students from voting, the truth is that Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate’s election integrity proposal will do nothing of the sort, as Pate himself explains:
The Election Integrity Act is not a photo ID mandate. Registered voters who do not already have an Iowa driver’s license or state-issued ID will be provided with a free voter ID card in the mail, automatically. It does not require a picture, additional documentation or travelling to the DMV to obtain.
This legislation also does not change Iowa’s voter registration process. Election day voter registration continues under my proposal.
College students can register to vote using the exact same opportunities currently available. Iowa law requires election day registrants to show proof of identification and proof of residency, but the ID cards must contain an expiration date. Student voters will be treated just like every other Iowan. If they need a voter ID card, we will supply them with one, for free.
Treated just like every other Iowan. That seems eminently fair.
It’s a ploy. Andrew McCarthy explains why Senate Democrats are “demanding” that soon-to-be Attorney General Jeff Sessions recuse himself from any investigation of Russian efforts to interfere in the election: to bolster their fictional “Russia hacked the election” narrative.
Notwithstanding that Putin’s regime did not tamper with the actual voting process and that the embarrassing information released by WikiLeaks (mostly e-mails from the DNC and Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta) was true, Democrats are determined to depict President Trump not as elected fair-and-square by Americans but as maneuvered into the White House by Russian “cyber-espionage.” . . .
Democrats want Sessions to concede, in effect, that he has a powerful motive to conceal Russia’s espionage — such that he must recuse himself because we cannot trust him to lead a fair and impartial investigation. Implicitly, Sessions would be conceding — and thus cementing — the fiction that “Russia hacked the election.” In other words, the Democrats’ latest recusal ploy has nothing to do with Sessions, just as the IG investigation has nothing to do with Comey. The objective is to engrave a story on the election: The Democrats lost not because their candidate was terrible and their policies unpopular; they lost because Russia stole the election for Trump — rendering Trump illegitimate, and implicitly obliging Americans to resist him as a Putin puppet.
Another lawsuit filed under Section 2 of the not-“gutted” Voting Rights Act:
The Eastpointe City Council met behind closed doors Tuesday to discuss how to respond to a U.S. Justice Department lawsuit filed against the Detroit suburb last week that claims the city’s at-large council election system, in place since 1929, “dilutes the voting strength of black citizens, in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act.”
DOJ wants to split the city into four single-member districts, with one drawn to create a black-majority district. The change would require voters to approve an amendment to the city charter.
Eastpointe City Manager Steve Duchane, who is named in the federal lawsuit along with the council, has said the city’s black residents have not formally expressed concerns, and shifting to district voting could require spending as much as $50,000 to change polling precincts, register new voters and issue new voting cards.
But fighting the DOJ lawsuit in court could cost Eastpointe taxpayers a million dollars.
Reaction from residents was mixed, and council members and the city’s attorney say they want DOJ to provide more specific information about the allegations. The city has 60 days to file a response.
Vafalay Massaquoi pleaded guilty to three counts of felony voter fraud for filing fake voter registration forms in Alexandria while working for the progressive group New Virginia Majority.
As usual, a plea deal means the potential maximum 30-year prison sentence – according to voter fraud deniers, the big deterrent to felony fraud – was reduced dramatically, to 90 days in jail:
Massaquoi pleaded guilty to three felony counts: Two counts of forging a public record and one count of election fraud. Massaquoi was sentenced to serve five years in prison on each charge, with all but time already served suspended for the period of five years and upon the conditions that he remain on good behavior, that he comply with Adult Probation and that he complete 500 hours of community service… Massaquoi has served approximately 90 days in jail.
“To say there’s no voter fraud is either being willfully ignorant or being naive.”
Democrat Governor Terry McAuliffe’s plans to make Virginia voting rules more lax were shot down today in the House of Delegates. The Republican-controlled elections subcommittee killed Democrat-sponsored bills that would have repealed the state’s photo voter ID law and expanded absentee and early voting, pet proposals of McAuliffe in this final legislative session of his term.
Republicans noted that Virginia voters without one of the many acceptable forms of photo ID can easily get a free Virginia Voter Photo Identification card.
Not only did they vote down repeal of voter ID, the subcommittee passed a bill to extend voter ID requirements to all absentee voting. Under current law, photo ID is required to vote absentee in person, but not for absentee voting by mail. The bill’s sponsor says it will bring uniformity to the process.
Recent cases of voter registration fraud in Harrisonburg and Alexandria highlight the need for voter ID. “To say there’s no voter fraud is either being willfully ignorant or being naive,” said Republican Delegate Mark Cole, House Privileges and Elections Committee chair.
Democrats including Virginia Lt. Governor Ralph Northam have also endorsed giving driver’s licenses to illegal aliens, another policy proposal that in conjunction with Motor Voter laws undermines the integrity of elections.
“The controversial decision by the Department of Homeland Security to designate the nation’s election system as ‘critical infrastructure’ has touched off a firestorm of opposition, and the incoming Trump administration has all but promised to overturn it.”
Voter ID laws are really “yesterday’s fight,” says former DOJ Voting Section attorney J. Christian Adams. The new front that state legislators interested in election integrity should focus on is voter rolls.
Maintaining clean voter rolls is required by federal law but is being fought “both in courts and politically” by left-wing organizations and their allies in the Obama Justice Department.
“Because clean voter rolls help prevent voter fraud, it’s probably the most important issue facing the states in the realm of voting laws, [Adams] said.”
Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted voiced his objections to the Department of Homeland Security’s unilateral decision last Friday to designate state election systems as “critical infrastructure” at the Ohio Election Association Officials conference this week, saying he’s concerned that DHS is unwilling to put into writing that they won’t intervene in any state’s election without the state’s consent.
“Whether it’s a Homeland Security secretary appointed under President Obama or one appointed under President Trump, I don’t want the federal government to have authority to invite themselves into our elections process in Ohio or any other state without our permission,” Husted said, followed to applause.
The National Association of Secretaries of State conference in February will focus on clarifying the issue, Husted said. If the department continues to evade a written statement and will not remove the designation, the NASS will ask Congress to clarify in law that Homeland Security cannot intervene in state elections without consent.
In case you missed it, watch Senator Jeff Sessions articulate his position on the Voting Rights Act and state voter ID laws during his Attorney General confirmation hearing.