Monday, October 24, 2016

The Donald Chronicles: Who Is Really Trying to Rig Elections

Donald Trump took over the technique rabid right GOPers had been using, of accusing opponents of what they are themselves guilty of.  So if anybody is trying to rig this election, it is Republicans.

Red states under court orders have been criminally slow to enforce those orders so voters can register and vote.  One particular case in point is Georgia, where the latest poll shows Hillary actually ahead.

As the Washington Post reports, "But voting rights advocates in Georgia say Republican state and local election officials are undermining the fairness of the vote by passing laws and adopting procedures that deter minorities and young people, groups that typically vote Democratic...

“Georgia is ground zero, if you will, when it comes to voter suppression and voting discrimination that we’re seeing this election season,” said Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law."

As one might expect in a state with Georgia's history, some of the efforts are less than subtle: In one county, advocates say they stopped an effort by local officials to move a polling precinct that served predominantly black voters from a gymnasium to the sheriff’s office."

Using other methods the story describes, state officials may be successful in denying or suppressing hundreds of thousands of votes in this rapidly urbanizing and diversifying state.  They may be enough to save the state for Trump, though the likely purpose of voter suppression is to save these GOPers jobs.

But Democrats continue to do well in early voting (the latest instance reported is Nevada.)  And trying to stifle overconfidence as pollsters and analysts find Trump has virtually no path to the presidency, key Dems are keeping up the pressure, going for the bandwagon effect as well as massive repudiation of Trumpism.

President Obama was quoted on this, at a CA fundraiser:“Make sure she wins big. Send a message about who we are as a people, send a clear message about what America stands for,” Obama said.  He urged them to see this as “a moment when America chose its best, and not worst, self.”

President Obama extended the argument to counter the new GOPer push to elect an R Congress to serve as a check on a President Clinton.

 He advocated "voting Democrats into majorities in Congress, changing what’s become the norm of the Republicans he blames for incubating Trump and Trumpism to think that gridlock is the ideal. All of those people need to get booted out of Washington, he said, and a reason to reject them even more strongly now that many have shifted to saying that they would serve as a “check” on a Clinton presidency.

“They’re not making an argument that we want to work with her to get things done. They are saying they’re going to say no to everything,” Obama said. “That’s what they mean by a check.”

“We’ve got to make a bold, sustained serious argument that America can do better than just gridlock, that Dems have a responsibility to work with Republicans, but Republicans have to want to actually get something done to move this country forward,” Obama said. “If your only argument is to do nothing, you do not deserve to be serving in Washington, because we have had enough of doing nothing.”

According to this Politico piece,  Clintonites are aiming for a "high single digit" win comparable to Obama's victory in 2008.  Organizational groundwork is now paying off, superstar surrogates are blitzing swing states, all aided by growing Dem enthusiasm--not just the bandwagon effect, but the galvanizing effect of Trump and Trumpisms.  In particular the third debate provided two monikers around which Dems are organizing.

Politico reports that there's a Latino group organizing in Ohio that calls itself "Hombres for Hillary."  And Elizabeth Warren made best use of the growing Nasty Women brand in her New Hampshire appearance with Hillary: “Nasty women are tough. Nasty women are smart. And nasty women vote. We nasty women are going to march our nasty feet to cast our nasty votes to get you out of our lives forever.”

 Meanwhile, if the Trump campaign wasn't in enough trouble, an emerging story may have been enough on its own to sink it, if it proves out: UK's Telegraph reports that a Trump PAC was prepared to take a $2 million illegal donation from a Chinese donor in exchange for influence in the White House.

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