Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Today's Election IS Rigged - By Trump And The GOP

Cartoon by Jonathan Schmock.  
As we cast our votes today, the sound ringing in many of our ears is that of Donald Trump telling us over, and over, and over and OVER again the system is rigged.

Trouble is, he's right. But he and the Republicans are doing most of the rigging. I

n this case, if the polls are to be believed, the rigging might not be enough to get Trump to the White House, but the rigging is impressive nonetheless.

Here are just some ways they've gone about trying to rig the election:

REMOVING LEGIT REGISTERED VOTERS:  Despite the efforts of the U.S. Justice Department, some states, notably North Carolina and Texas, have been improperly removing people who just happen to be  more likely to vote Democrat from voter registration lists.

The shenanigans have gotten so bad in Texas the U.S. Justice Department is sending crews of poll watchers to Texas to make sure everyone who's eligible to vote and wants to indeed does so.

In North Carolina, the GOP literally bragged in a press release issued Sunday that fewer black voters cast early ballots there than in 2012. North Carolina Republicans said that was because African-Americans are supposedly tired of Barack Obama's policies, but that doesn't explain why Obama is more popular than he's ever been.

The real reason why black early voting is down in North Carolina this year is because of aggressive GOP efforts to suppress the black vote.

Says Mother Jones:

"Emails obtained last week by Reuters showed that Republican officials pushes successfully to restrict early voting sites and cut down on early voting on Sundays, when many black churches hold 'Souls to the Polls' mass voting drives."


Another way Republicans are trying to suppress votes from blacks and Hispanics is by cutting down the number of voting sites in minority neighborhoods on election day. This creates long lines, and people who work for a living can't stand in a line all day waiting to vote. Or they don't have cars and can't drive long distances to polling places.


The most obnoxious method of voter suppression isn't sanctioned by the GOP, but done by Internet trolls, most of whom are Trump backers.

As CNN notes, they're circulating fake ads on social media saying things like: "Save time. Avoid the lines. Vote from home... Text 'Hillary to 59925 and we'll make history together." The ad comes complete with a "Paid for by Hillary For President" stamp.

Of course, you CANNOT vote via text. You have to do it in person. People who don't realize this will hit that text number, and think they voted and didn't.  By the way, as if you didn't know, Hillary For President is not putting out these ads.

Twitter is trying like hell to scrub these ads, but there's only so much they can do to stop the onslaught.


Of course, some of these attempts at vote suppression have backfired on Republicans. In Texas Latinos, fired up by Trump's anti-Hispanic rhetoric and efforts to block their votes, have motivated Latinos to sign up to vote in droves, despite the roadblocks.

CBS Dallas says there are 500,000 more Latinos registered to vote in Texas this year than in 2016.

In Nevada, Latino voters were so pissed off at Trump and the GOP that they swarmed polling sites like crazy for early voting over the weekend, which just might have tipped that state to Hillary Clinton.

What mystifies me is it would probably be easier for the GOP to appeal to Hispanics and African-Americans through persuasion, rather than just appealing to an ever-shrinking proportion of conservative white voters.

There are many African Americans and Hispanics for whom conservative social values, and pro-business economic plans would be appealing.  The GOP could just come up with a good, decent , detailed, comprehensive conservative platform to siphon these votes away from Democrats.

The way the GOP is handling things this year, they're telegraphing that they really don't have any good ideas as a counterweight to the Democratic platform.

There's more than a whiff of racism here. Let's appeal to the white voters, and leave others out of our club. It's not the American way, obviously.

It's also not how you win elections, and I'm stunned the GOP hasn't figured that out yet.

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