January 2012 - Posts

Real Fraud Ignored Again
Thu, Jan 12 2012 6:39 AM

The provocative video producer James O'Keefe has done it again. O'Keefe, who exposed corruption at ACORN and racism at PBS, has shown how easy it is to "vote" in the name of dead people. While we do not commend his methods, we do condemn those on the left who are once again ignoring the problem. It is becoming more and more obvious that the left will deny any and all vote fraud, regardless of the evidence.

While we do not recommend nor embrace O'Keefe's methods, he did it for an uncontested primary, did not actually vote, and was doing it to expose a problem. New Hampshire is not an ideal place to commit vote fraud. It is a smaller geographic area, and people are more like to know one another. Yet with one possible exception: O'Keefe and his agents did not get caught.

Now the left is outraged. How come no one on the left was outraged about a real problem, a story the same day about 900 possible votes in the name of dead people in South Carolina? Which is more important a publicity stunt to prove a point that did no harm or actual fraud? Yet, the left is yelling and screaming over O'Keefe but completely ignoring South Carolina. This is happening at a time when much of the political press is in South Carolina for the upcoming Republican primary.

Of course some on the left who deny vote fraud, actually committed vote fraud. The leading media vote fraud denier MSNBC's Al Sharpton himself actually committed vote fraud. Officers of the NAACP,  the leading group opposing common sense reforms such as Voter ID have also been convicted of vote fraud. Maybe they want to protect their follow fraudsters?

You do not have to take a word of a Republican blogger to believe in vote fraud or the need for common sense reforms like voter ID. In a place ripe with fraud that is currently debating a Voter ID bill another one of MSNBC's Al Sharpton colleagues, Chris Mathews, said how Philadelphia Democrats would bus the same people around to have them vote in multiple places . When sponsoring successful Voter ID legislation, African American Senior Citizen Rhode Island Democrat Harold Metts detailed vote fraud in the Democrat primaries he had personally witnessed. When former Congressional Black Caucus Member Democrat Artur Davis admitted he was wrong to take Voter ID in the past, he detailed the fraud in Alabama.

Yet, the only person likely to be investigated and the only person the left is calling on to be prosecuted is James O'Keefe. The left does not care about actual vote fraud.

That's just it; the left will deny vote fraud, in part because it benefits the left. We are hoping that Democrats in New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, will join with Republicans and the overwhelming majority of the public in order to make it harder to cheat and easier to vote by adopting common sense reforms like voter ID. However, we have little hope in the political left or the mainstream media telling the truth about vote fraud. We wish the mainstream media would honestly investigate, instead of leaving it to so-called "Ashton Kutcher of the conservative movement.”  The subject matter is too important because every fraudulent vote disenfranchises a legal voter .

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Posthumous Vote Fraud in New Hampshire
Wed, Jan 11 2012 7:34 AM

The Boston Herald reports that there was attempted “posthumous voting” (ballots cast by the deceased) in New Hampshire yesterday.  Only due to the diligent monitoring by New Hampshire’s Manchester Ward 9 voting supervisor Gloria Pilotte was posthumous vote fraud prevented in New Hampshire. Unfortunately, not all poll volunteers are as “sharp-eyed” as Pilotte to recognize the name of someone who had recently died and stop vote fraud before it can impact an election.

So just how does the dead hand of a voter reach into the voting booth?  The efforts of some Americans from beyond the grave are legendary.  For one, there’s Denise Red Horse of Ziebach County, South Dakota, who died September 3, 2002 in a car crash.  But the untimely demise of this Native American did not stop her from doing her civic duty 18 days later, and in two different counties. (Yes, you read that correctly: Denise is not just a posthumous voter, but a double posthumous voter.)  Two absentee-ballot applications “from” Denise appeared in bundles mailed from South Dakota Democratic headquarters.  The culprit was Maka Duta (A.K.A. Becky Earth-Villeda), who bought a county history book that contained local names.  Duta was paid $2 by the Democrat Party for each absentee ballot voter application she collected.  This all happened in the 2002 Senate race, decided by 528 votes in favor of Tim Johnson (D) over John Thune (R) – where there were hundreds of voting “irregularities” besides posthumous voting.  

If you think that the story of Denise Red Horse is rare, think again.  According to a 2006 Poughkeepsie Journal study, 2,600 dead people cast ballots in 45 counties across New York.  Notable was the address of the Hebrew Home for the Aged in the Bronx that apparently is now a cemetery: it was listed as housing 191 registered voters who had died.  Analysis of party registration of the posthumous voters revealed that Democrats who cast votes after they died outnumbered Republicans by more than a 4-to-1 margin.

Needless to say, posthumous voting is illegal under state law.  Lesser known is the fact that federal law takes notice of the occurrence of posthumous voting today.  Section 8 of the 1993 Motor Voter Law specifically demands that states clean voter rolls of the deceased. See § 1973gg-6(a)(4)(A).  However, as Obama’s Justice Department has demonstrated no interest in enforcing this provision, we must implement voter ID laws as electoral reforms to prevent the “miracle” of the resurrection at the ballot box. 

Those of us still alive can breathe a sigh of relief because voter ID laws (and in an increasing number of states now) provide some protection against our votes being canceled out by the modern Lazarus.  But does anyone offer condolences to the family of Denise Red Horse; their loved one is now remembered a decade after death (and is forever immortalized the Congressional Record) for being the most famous posthumous voter. 

There are a number of ways to prevent posthumous voting.   Volunteer to be watching the polls with an eagle’s eye like Pilotte. Demand that state voter rolls be cleaned.  Support voter ID laws.  But don’t let the next obituary page be a list of the next Denise Red Horses.  Do what you can to ensure that our voters six feet under rest in peace.  

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When Nobody Speaks: Disclosure and Campaign Finance
Tue, Jan 10 2012 5:00 AM

 

I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Are you – Nobody – too?
Then there’s a pair of us!
Don’t tell! They’d advertise – you know!

Emily Dickinson probably wasn’t writing about campaign finance when she penned these verses, but her words are very relevant.  What happens when “Nobody” wants to speak?  We should take the Nun of Amherst at her word.  Don’t disclose anonymous speakers because “They’d advertise – you know!” 

Federal Election Commissioners Hunter, McGahn and Petersen (along with support from Commissioners Walther and Bauerly) were attempting last year to move forward with FEC regulations about freedom of speech in light of Citizens United.  However, in mid-December, Commissioner Weintraub issued a statement claiming that privacy of speakers “cannot be good for our democracy.”  What Commissioner Weintraub fails to recognize is that the overregulation of campaign finance laws through unconstitutional disclosure is what is not good for democracy.   

 It was said that, “Inviolability of privacy…may in many circumstances be indispensable to preservation of freedom… particularly where a group espouses dissident beliefs.” So held the Supreme Court in NAACP v. Alabama.

Just by finding out disclosed speakers’ names, opponents of speech can (and have) intimidated speakers into silence.  In NAACP, the Court noted that the “recognition of possible unconstitutional intimidation of [..] free exercise” led to limiting the government’s authority to receive information about the identity of speakers when the state of Alabama sought the names of the members of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.  Opponents of the NAACP were just waiting for the identities of members of the group to be released and then they could begin intimidating them into silence.

Intimidation can take many forms, and today, backlash can take the form of negative response advertisements, boycotts, and protests.  John Samples, director of Cato’s Center for Representative Government, explains that “forcing disclosure will lead to a backlash by customers or shareholders against the relevant businesses or groups. If so, the leaders of the businesses or groups in question may decide to the costs of speaking out are too high and remain silent.”

Although the opinion emphasizes that there is a “close nexus between the freedoms of speech and assembly” long-recognized by the Court, NAACP was a case in 1957 dealing with freedom of association.    But the Supreme Court did speak on this issue in 1982 about a state election law, holding that, “The First Amendment prohibits a State from compelling disclosures by a minor party that will subject those persons identified to the reasonable probability of threats, harassment, or reprisals. Such disclosures would infringe the First Amendment rights of the party and its members and supporters.” See Brown v. Socialist Workers ’74 Campaign Comm.  In that case, an Ohio campaign finance law required disclosure of contributors, but was struck down as violative of the First Amendment.

We have a country that can be called “home of the brave” because it is first “the land of the free.”  We must not chill speech by excessive disclosure requirements that do not withstand constitutional scrutiny.  That’s an insight that we can only hope Commissioner Weintraub will take to heart.

 

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Ready. Set. Voter ID!
Mon, Jan 9 2012 7:45 AM

Voters are getting prepared for the implementation of voter ID laws, thanks to the diligent efforts in states such as Wisconsin, Tennessee and South Carolina.

In Wisconsin, information about voter ID has taken to the airwaves.  The Associated Press notes that Wisconsin has instituted a “new website, print ads, billboards, brochures, a toll-free hotline [866-vote-wis], and television and radio spots.” A representative of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board described the ads’ effectiveness by noting that, "The ad campaign uses real Wisconsin people urging their fellow Wisconsinites to remember to bring their IDs with them to vote.”  Governor Scott Walker has long been a defender of voter ID for Wisconsin, proposing it over ten years ago and then holding a soft spot for it when he signed the law, commenting, “This one's obviously special.”

But Wisconsin is not the only one doing good things with voter ID laws.  In Tennessee, 9,492 photo voter IDs were issued from July 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011.   Maybe there’s a reason it’s called the Volunteer State; there’s a lot of volunteering to help citizens get IDs. The reason for this number of IDs issued probably is due to the efforts of the state government which has instituted Saturday business hours for driver license centers and the assistance of county clerks.  In September, Governor Bill Haslam addressed special efforts to prepare for the implementation of the voter ID law in his state; these efforts included creating “express service” lines at DMVs, arranging for IDs to be provided by counties who do not have DMVs and sending direct mail to inform elderly voters of the law’s exception for them.

Then there’s South Carolina where Governor Nikki Haley said in an interview: “Find me those people who think that [voter ID] is invading their rights — find — and I will go take them to the DMV myself and help them get that picture ID.”  This was not just talk.  This governor took that promise and acted.  She turned Wednesday, September 28, 2011 into State Identification Card Day where voters received transportation to the DMV to get their free ID.  The head of the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles said, “South Carolina Identification Card Day has given us a great opportunity to do more for the citizens of this state. Whether we help five or 50 citizens, it's the right thing to do.”

Voter ID is the right thing to do, because states like Wisconsin, Tennessee and South Carolina are helping more than just five, 50 or even 9,492 people get IDs.  These states are advancing openness, fairness and honesty in elections.  That’s something that’s good for all of us. 

 

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Obomination: Obama’s Recess Appointment Timing Is Change We Should Not Believe In
Fri, Jan 6 2012 6:55 AM

 

This week’s Obomination is what Republican Leader Mitch McConnell decried as “particularly egregious” and Speaker John Boehner denounced as an “extraordinary and entirely unprecedented power grab.”  It was “a very grave decision by this heavy-handed, autocratic White House” according to Senator Orrin Hatch and seen as “an arrogant abuse of presidential power” by Senator John Cornyn.  Forty-seven Senators wrote a letter of disapproval to the president.

Barack Obama appointed Richard Cordray director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau through a recess appointment, while the Senate was in a “pro forma” session.  But that’s not all.  Hours later, Obama installed Terrence Flynn, Sharon Block, and Richard Griffin as National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Members, appointments also made during the Senate’s pro forma session.

A previous Obomination delved into Obama’s disregard for separation of powers and checks and balances, but now Obama has launched an all out war with such constitutional principles.  He has taken action to “needlessly provoke a constitutional conflict between the Senate and the White House.”  As its name suggests, a President may use the recess appointment authority to appoint individuals to Senate confirmed positions during a recess of the Senate.  Majority Leader Harry Reid first used the pro forma session to prevent President George W. Bush from making recess appointments.  The question of the constitutionality of Obama’s appointments is one that will surely be brought to the judiciary.

Prior recess appointments by the Obama Administration have put radicals in power – and these radicals would never have been confirmed by the Senate if presented with the opportunity to advise and consent.  Exhibit A: Craig Becker, appointed to the NLRB.  The NLRB, responsible for a number of radical decisions during Becker’s tenure, has lost a great deal of credibility. 

To borrow a phrase from President Obama, “yes, he can” doesn’t mean “yes, he should” – for several reasons.  First, Senator Hatch explained how presidential appointments to the NLRB and similar agencies have been conducted previously: “Appointments to the NLRB have traditionally been made through prior agreement of both parties to ensure that any group of nominees placed on the board represents an appropriate political and philosophical balance.”  In addition, as many members and scholars have noted, prior administrations have not made an intrasession recess appointment while the Senate was actually in pro forma session.  In fact, the shortest length of an intrasession recess in which a President made a recess appointment was ten days.  As Rep. Jim Jordan of the Republican Study Committee noted the day of the Obama recess appointments, “The House and Senate both met yesterday.”

Obama, the former constitutional law professor, should reread (perhaps out loud like Congress did) the Constitution.  The relevant part is Article 2 Section 2: “he [The President] shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint…Officers of the United States.”  While the President clearly has the authority to make recess appointments, Obama’s use of the appointment stretches the limits of the Constitution.  Does “Advice and Consent” have any meaning anymore if the President can just bypass the Senate’s legitimate role in the confirmation process? 

Obama’s Constitution is very different from what was written in Philadelphia in 1787. This is change the Founders didn’t believe in.  And for good reason, neither should we.  

 

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In Case You Missed It: Vote Fraud Guilty Pleas At 2011’s End
Thu, Jan 5 2012 11:53 AM

 

There was an absentee ballot application filed in Troy, New York for Brian Suozzo that said he was "at home recovering from medical procedure.”  But Brian Suozzo wasn’t.  What really happened was, as Suozzo explained, "Someone took my signature and voted with it.”   

Jessica Boomhower's absentee ballot application claimed she was in Boston.   She declared, "I can't believe they thought they would get away with this… I didn't get to cast my vote on my own." 

Others’ votes were cancelled out because someone claimed they were unavailable due to a “bus trip to casino."  They weren't on any bus trip to a casino or otherwise.  

Need I go on?

Thanks to diligent work (including obtaining court orders to take DNA samples from Democrats on the Troy City Council) by the vote fraud prosecution, guilty pleas were obtained in December 2011 from four Democrats responsible.  Former Troy Democratic City Clerk William McInerney, Democratic Councilman John Brown, Anthony Renna and Anthony DeFiglio pled guilty to forging signatures on absentee ballots in the 2009 Working Families Party primary in New York.

But New York is not alone.  North Carolina also had vote fraud uncovered at the year’s end.  Janice A. McDonald allegedly voted in North Carolina in 2008 while living in Virginia.  And there was Jennifer Perez, who allegedly voted in Pasquotank in 2010 after casting a provisional ballot in Camden.

When vote fraud occurs, one vote can be cancelled out.   Vote fraud made Suozzo feel “violated.”  Wouldn’t you feel the same?

 

by Maya Noronha | with no comments
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Is the ACLU Supporting Double Voting?
Thu, Jan 5 2012 9:35 AM

 

The ACLU has filed a lawsuit, which tries unsuccessfully to craft sympathetic tales about how certain individuals claim to be unable to get voter ID cards in Wisconsin.   Six of the plaintiffs listed (Anne Shea, Matthew Dearing, Max Kligman, Samantha Meszaros, Steve Kvasnicka and Sarah Lahti) in the ACLU’s lawsuit don’t want to surrender their drivers’ license from another state. 

Another state’s ID actually may be a license to commit vote fraud in a place you don’t reside.  If you recall, in Crawford v. Marion County Board of Elections, the League of Women Voters’ amicus brief claimed to find evidence of voter suppression.  It didn’t.  In reality, the woman prevented from casting a ballot in Indiana had a Florida’s drivers’ license and claimed residency in Florida (by filing for a homestead exemption).  What happened at the polls was not voter suppression.  What happened is what voter ID is supposed to do: prevent people from voting in states where they do not reside and from double voting.

First of all, you shouldn’t be able to vote in more than one state. In fact, it’s a crime.  Double voting is illegal according to federal law.

Second of all, it’s not fair to those who are not wealthy enough to afford multiple homes. Do you even want to be resident in a state where you want to vote if you are keeping a license in another state?  Remember wealthy former U.S. Senate Democrat Majority Leader Tom Daschle?  His wife claimed a homestead exemption (legally claiming their residency in one jurisdiction) for D.C. while Daschle had a South Dakota license.  That was wrong for the Democrat to claim to be a resident of more than one state (or a state and DC) at the same time.  Homestead exemptions are programs of the states and D.C. to benefit their own residents, not politically opportunist Senators.  And the people of South Dakota agreed. It was one of the reasons that South Dakota voters refused to continue to allow Daschle to represent them in Washington, D.C.  They concluded that he was not one of them because you can’t call D.C. and South Dakota both home. 

You shouldn’t be able to play games with the law and vote in a place where you don’t actually reside.  Remember the wealthy former vice presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro?  She owned two homes and voted in both places.  The wealthy politician was wrong to vote in more than one precinct when other people with less means only have the income to afford to live in one place all the time and thereby vote in only one place.

The six plaintiffs with an old license had the opportunity to move between precincts and attempting to vote there.  What about the voter who cannot afford to do so and has lived in the same jurisdiction all his or her life and can only vote in one place?  Why should his vote mean less because he cannot vote where he might want to vote for politically advantageous reasons?

These six plaintiffs don’t want to surrender their licenses.  It’s not that they can’t surrender it.  You don’t have a right to hold a drivers’ license for a state where you don’t reside. In fact, states like Massachusetts actually require that you do surrender that old license.  It’s not a severe and undue burden on the constitutional right to vote if you have a real option but, at best, you just don’t want to bother and at the worst, you are committing vote fraud.

This is about equal justice under law, for the rich and the poor.  I thought the ACLU was concerned about the injustice of inequality of wealth.  Apparently not.

 

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Close Margins of Victory in Elections Demonstrate Need for Voter ID
Wed, Jan 4 2012 9:32 AM

 

Mitt Romney finished in first place at yesterday’s Iowa Caucus, edging Rick Santorum by 8 votes. The media is mostly reporting that this was the closest primary in history.  But that’s not true unless you are only talking about Republican primaries.  The closest caucus was actually between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in 2008.  Four years ago, the left’s primaries were chaotic and rampant with fraud, in particular in Nevada.

Except for a few outlets in 2008, the mainstream media did not report about the allegations of voter suppression, vote rigging, closing voting early and miscounting.  The irony of it all is that one of the largest opponents of voter ID today, Bill Clinton, actually spoke out against fraud in elections just four years ago.  

Bill Clinton said, “Today when my daughter and I were wandering through the hotel, and all these culinary workers were mobbing us telling us they didn’t care what the union told them to do, they were gonna caucus for Hillary.  There was a representative of the organization following along behind us going up to everybody who said that, saying 'if you’re not gonna vote for our guy were gonna give you a schedule tomorrow so you can’t be there.' So, is this the new politics? I haven’t seen anything like that in America in 35 years. So I will say it again – they think they're better than you.” 

Hillary Clinton’s Nevada campaign director Robert Mook said, “We did receive hundreds of examples of irregularities," such as “doors were closed early ... numerous examples of miscounting ... and others who were told they had to vote for Obama or they would lose a shift at their workplace.”

But the allegations of fraud cut both ways.

Apparently, Hillary did exactly what she criticized her opponent for doing.  Obama’s campaign manager David Plouffe said, “We currently have reports of over 200 separate incidents of trouble at caucus sites, including doors being closed up to thirty minutes early, registration forms running out so people were turned away, and ID being requested and checked in a non-uniform fashion. This is in addition to the Clinton campaign’s efforts to confuse voters and call into question the at-large caucus sites which clearly had an affect [sic] on turnout at these locations. These kinds of Clinton campaign tactics were part of an entire week’s worth of false, divisive, attacks designed to mislead caucus-goers and discredit the caucus itself." 

Voter ID is important to have in place in the general election because close elections do happen and when close elections happen, the American public should have confidence in the result.  The 2008 Democrat Nevada caucus had both sides, the winner and the loser, casting doubt on the process because of Democrat and union tactics and irregularities.  Every voter wants to know their vote counts and is not cancelled out by someone who is not eligible to vote… especially in a close race.  Voter ID is an important tool in that process.  It’s the president of the United States we’re voting for.  Shouldn’t we have some integrity in that process and confidence in the result?

 

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Across the Board, GOP Field Wants New Attorney General
Tue, Jan 3 2012 8:17 AM

 

What do the Republican presidential candidates think about the 82nd Attorney General?  According to media reports, their positions on Eric Holder are far from favorable.  Here’s the rundown (in their words):

·         “Attorney General Holder should resign.” – Michele Bachmann

·         “It's clear to me that Attorney General Holder should resign.” – Newt Gingrich

·         “President Obama should ask for Mr. Holder’s resignation.” – Jon Huntsman

·         “[Eric Holder] should be immediately fired.” – Ron Paul

·         “It is high time for Mr. Holder to step down. If he refuses to resign, Mr. Obama must fire him immediately.” Rick Perry

·         Eric Holder has “brought shame” on the Justice Department and should resign or be fired. – Mitt Romney

·         "I wouldn't ask for his resignation; I would fire him." –Rick Santorum

And what is Eric Holder’s response to a journalist who asked about the calls for his resignation covered in news reports?  Instead of defending his qualifications and explaining himself, Eric Holder’s response was to order the media to cease doing their job.  He actually said, “You guys need to — you need to stop this.”

This buzz over Eric Holder stems from his Department of Justice’s program, Fast and Furious (a scandal involving sale of guns to Mexican drug dealers), but there is much more to be concerned about with Eric Holder.  Eric Holder responded to such criticisms of President Obama and himself by claiming that they are due to “you know, the fact that we’re both African-American.”

Eric Holder has led a radical Department of Justice with extreme views of race relations in our country.  It comes down to a clipping Eric Holder carried around since 1971 in his wallet with the following quote from a Harlem preacher:

Blackness is another issue entirely apart from lass in America.  No matter how affluent, educated and mobile [a black person] becomes, his race defines him more particularly than anything else.  Black people have a common cause that requires attending to, and this cause does not allow for the rigid class separation that is the luxury of American whites.  There is a sense in which every black man is as far from liberation as the weakest one if his weakness is attributable to racial injustice.

Holder earlier explained that clipping means that “I am not the tall U.S. attorney, I am not the thin United States attorney.  I am the black United States attorney.” 

For someone who is head of an agency dedicated to equality of all the races, why does he identify with only one?  Americans want an attorney general who fights for justice for all of us.   

It’s not easy, but there are some who have stood for such principles. African American former Alabama Congressman Artur Davis wrote of how he changed his mind to now support voter ID by explaining,“When I was a congressman, I took the path of least resistance on this subject for an African American politician. Without any evidence to back it up, I lapsed into the rhetoric of various partisans and activists who contend that requiring photo identification to vote is a suppression tactic aimed at thwarting black voter participation.”   

Holder has taken the “path of least resistance” by taking an “aggressive” stance against voter ID and hastily sending a letter rejecting preclearance of the South Carolina voter ID law. But we need an attorney general who takes the straight and narrow path of justice.

There’s another quote Eric Holder should be aware of.  No one knows who wrote it or where it came from, but it’s something he could learn from.  He should make a clipping with the words:“Equal justice under law.” 

It’s what’s written on the United States Supreme Court building.

 

by Maya Noronha | with no comments
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