Sunday, April 15, 2007

Making the Connection

At least one member of the main stream media is connecting the dots when it comes to the way the Bush administration has GOPoliticized all aspects of the federal government. Today's NY Times contains an editorial which makes the connection between the firing of US Attorneys for "personnel issues" and the GOP push on alleged voter fraud.

The context for the editorial comes from the NY Times' own reporting. Last week's NY Times carried several articles on how an independent commission altered a report on voter fraud, and on how US Attorneys were pressured to bring indictments on even the flimsiest of evidence. (I posted on those articles here and here.)

The more we learn about the White House’s purge of United States attorneys, the more a single thread runs through it: the Bush administration’s campaign to transform the minor problem of voter fraud into a supposed national scourge.

When the public first learned about the firing of eight United States attorneys, administration officials piously declared that many of the prosecutors had ill served the public by failing to aggressively pursue voter fraud cases (against Democrats, naturally). But the more we examine this issue, the more ludicrous those claims seem.

The editorial then proceeds to point to the alteration of the report on voter fraud and traces the history of such alterations by the Bush administration.

It’s obvious why the Bush administration would edit those documents, but why the voting report? Because charges of voter fraud are a key component of the Republican electoral strategy. If the public believes there are rampant efforts to vote fraudulently, or to register voters improperly, it increases support for measures like special voter ID’s, which work against the poor, the elderly, minorities and other disenfranchised groups that tend to support Democrats. Claims of rampant voter fraud also give the administration an excuse to cut back prosecutions of the real problem: officials who block voters’ access to the polls. [Emphasis added]


What is so refreshing about the editorial is that at least on this issue the NY Times has stopped being the stenographer of record for the administration. It also helps that the editorial page and the front page are finally on the same page when it comes to the administration's subversion of our democracy.

Nicely done.

Oh, and more like this, please.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's where to look. The original DoJ release on the topic from Bushco. as follows:


(All complaints related to discrimination or access can be reported to the Civil Rights Division at 800-253-3931)
(All complaints related to ballot integrity can be reported to the Criminal Division at 202-514-1412)
(All media inquiries are to be directed to the Office of Public Affairs at 202-514-2007)
Election Day Points of Contact - District Election Officers
Arkansas - Eastern---John Ray White--501-324-5321

Arkansas - Western---Larry McCord--479-494-4064

Forget the office of public affairs. Go directly to their dep't.

9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think it was palast who emphasized and wanted to make clear the rhetorical difference between "voter fraud" (cases of which are rare) and "election fraud" - something carried out by officials.

people (like me) are in error using the terms interchangeably.


4:54 AM  

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