The 2000, 2004 and 2016 Presidential results did not match expectations. Recently watching CNN analysts and other prognosticators asking why polls consistently appear to overstate the Democrats chances of victory on Election Day in recent years is very frustrating. The polls (in the aggregate) are not necessarily wrong. We must understand the actual nature of the apparent and real subversion of the will of the people that has been taking place. Since 2000 there has been much talk about various conspiracies to tamper with election machinery—but I will be giving that a wide birth.
But we do not need to give tampering with USPS sorting machines a wide birth.
But first—it must also be understood that voter fraud by the voter is mathematically irrelevant, anyone who does not understand this fact needs to be grabbed by the their backside and given a political enema to expunge the bileful ignorance that is the stool for the little understood racist rooted agenda to tolerate / encourage voter suppression activities. Since 2000, the GOP ability to win all the levers of government, has been based on this unacceptable defecation on our democracy. This now proven fact (voter fraud by the voter being mathematically irrelevant) is an issue that must be understood, if ever we are to find deliverance from our collective fate.
Since the GOP cannot win a fact based argument, they have become addicted to the necessity to cheat. This tweet from the President, is proof of his naked assault on democracy—using malicious defamation to then demand that votes not be counted, demanding that officials break the easy to understand recount laws of Florida. These are the words of a person with zero regard for the rule of law.
Compounding these illegal demands, would be the Governor of Florida, who said without any basis:
“Every Floridian should be concerned there may be rampant fraud happening in Palm Beach and Broward counties,” he told reporters Thursday at a news conference. “No ragtime group of liberal activists or lawyers from D.C. will be allowed to steal this election from the voters in this great state.”
Whilst the legacy of the 2018 midterm electoral victory will eventually be seen as both the moment of reinstalling a check against a Republican party with no interest in containing the most rapine and corrupt administration in American history, and also a turning point in basic electoral rights—but that must be cemented with the 2020 election.
First let’s quickly get Gerrymandering out the way. In 2016 according data from the Cook Political Report although Republicans received a plurality of votes cast for Congress nationwide at 49.9%,—they received a greater share, 55.2% of the seats. This cheat gives the GOP a 5% head start regarding control of Congress. * The recent reforms in Pennsylvania have improved this imbalance.
But let’s focus on the less well known tricks that have created this despotic scenario of election results not adding up. Voter suppression is the main culprit and we need to understand how massive this problem is—in the context that such pivotal control is derived from a handful of routinely tight swing states.
Context: Top ten swing states –How Trump became President in 2016:
- Michigan 0.3%, or 13,080 votes 2. New Hampshire 0.4%, or 2,701 votes 3. Wisconsin 1%, or 27,257 votes 4. Pennsylvania 1.2%, or: 68,236 votes 5. Florida 1.2%, or 114,455 votes 6. Minnesota 1.5%, or: 44,470 votes 7. Nevada 2.4%, or 26,434 votes 8. Maine 2.7% or 19,995 votes 9. North Carolina 3.8%, or: 177,009 votes 10. Arizona 3.9%, or 91,682 votes
Voter Suppression: The seemingly innocuous notion of Voter ID
Restrictive voter identification policies—especially those that require state-issued photo ID cards—threaten to exclude millions of eligible voters.
- As many as 10% of eligible voters do not have, and will not get, the documents required by strict voter ID laws. For some groups (minorities, the poor and Students) the percentage is much higher.
- Since ID requirements are not justified by any serious or widespread problem, there is no reason for states to implement burdensome ID requirements.
- States that do require proof of identity at the polls should permit an expansive range of proof.
The Brennan Center for Justice adds:
. . . The impact of ID requirements. . . African Americans have driver’s licenses at half the rate of whites, and the disparity increases among younger voters; only 22% of black men aged 18–24 had a valid driver’s license. Not only are minority voters less likely to possess photo ID, but they are also more likely than white voters to be selectively asked for ID at the polls.
So how is voting suppressed? Remember only one party wants to ensure less votes. Rural counties pose less problems and are rarely impacted—how tough can be to verify and provide the required infrastructure for 100 voters on a timely basis?
Using the 2012 election as a benchmark:
23 States that demand voter photo ID to vote
30 States preventing convicted felons to vote (6.1m) across the nation.
This all leads to voter participation rates in the United States being pitiful compared to other countries
Who Sets Up These Cheating Scams?
First it is the GOP, since Democrats merely want to make it easier to vote knowing full well that fraud (by the voter) is a non-issue. After that it is the down to the Governors—and their races are rarely analyzed for their nationwide implications. The Governors of each state tend to dictate the process, and if the secretary of state is also GOP, then there are few barriers to decisively rigging the system.
Looking at the situation leading up to the 2018 election, I will demonstrate how motivated Governors who are now expected, by their party, to effectively rig the outcome in swing states— and how easy this is to accomplish, with a cornucopia of effective strategies at their disposal. So let us look at the swing states, as that will be where such motivations are most compelling.
In any Presidential election—only the swing states matter, thus they are the only states where really creative cheating is worth the hassle. Since 2010 there have been 23 States that have made it more difficult to vote –including most of the above, of course.
Examples of Voter Suppression Activities:
Anyone of the listed cheats below can swing an election, add them together and you can get a tsunami of Stupidparty victories in the swing states. That is what happened in 2016, that is why all the national the polls were “wrong”, and that was how America got subverted into ending up with Trump—an event that America will never be able to live down.
The 2018 elections: As The Washington Post reported “Civil rights groups and election officials fielded thousands of reports of voting irregularities across the country Tuesday, with voters complaining of broken machines, long lines and untrained poll workers improperly challenging Americans’ right to vote.”
But there is so much more:
- Stricter voter ID laws add 1%* to the GOP (see below). i.e. 6% when added to a gerrymandered advantage
- Criminal records (70,000,000 Americans have them). Before 2019, 1,500,000 – voters in Florida, (> 20% of African Americans) were ineligible for this reason alone. Worst offenders after Florida: Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia—all former Confederate states. As a result, in those states, more than 7% of the total voting-age population is disenfranchised
- Voter purges, Southern States more active – heightened efforts remove an additional 2,000,000 votes nationwide— when conducted improperly, it can disenfranchise voters who are removed in “error” and not notified until it’s too late to ameliorate the problem
- Reducing the number of precincts, thus increasing traveling distance. To illustrate: In Maricopa County, Arizona, which is 31% Latino, the number of polling places dropped from 200 in 2012 to 60 for the 2016 primaries.
- Cutting back voting hours. North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee and Nebraska
- Cutting back voting booths
- Poll workers showing up late in urban areas, of course
- Not having enough ballots in urban areas, of course
- Voting machines not working, not properly maintained in South Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, Indiana, Arizona, Ohio (notice any pattern?)
- Putting voting centers in obscure, hard-to-find, hard to get to locations
- Providing false or misleading information about how to vote, where to vote and voter eligibility.
- Designing ballots to confuse the voters. This might cost Bill Nelson his Florida Senate seat
- Reluctance to, delays in, updating voter registrations after changes of address –likely implemented in a cherry picked fashion.
- Designing voter fraud campaigns, endless lying about voter fraud, (if they bring it up, they are lying) to intimidate specific populations.
- Voter intimidation, with heightened police presence or campaign lawyers or agents
- Postal ballots – checking signatures match in a selective manner
- Insisting on making people vote during working hours, disproportionately impacts working people. 35% of those who registered but did not vote in the 2014 midterms said that scheduling conflicts with work or school kept them from getting to the polls.
- Time off /paid time off to vote. Many States, many companies find ways of making it more difficult for hourly workers to find time to vote. The more backward the state—often times suggests the higher the hurdles to vote.
- Irony alert: North Dakota Senate race; targeting the most real Americans, native Americans (living on reservation), by suddenly insisting on a residential address, not a PO Box
- Kicking eligible Americans off the voter lists for simply not voting,
- Refusing to process voter registration cards,
- “Ballot harvesting” prevents anyone who is not a relative, caregiver or household member from turning in someone else’s ballot (penalty up to a year in prison)
- Proof of citizenship. (Specific to racist central —Arizona)
- Vandalizing USPS sorting machines. Impact unknown as this is a new phenomena. But of course it will be focused in swing state urban areas.
*Nate Silver accepts that stricter Voter ID laws (aimed at minorities suppress registered votes by around 2% – (2.4% in Pennsylvania) thus the number would be larger for all eligible voters. The net swing to GOP equates to about 1% (50% of the turnout change). Students – another GOP target are also disproportionately impacted.
** The 2018 elections actually showed an overall surge of voter turnout (enthusiasm) —caused by the existential threat that is the Trump Presidency on the one hand—and the fired up fearful hate that Trump successfully caravanned up into a mindless feeding frenzy.