What if they should find a leader? What shall we do then.
General Burgoyne The Devil’s Disciple 1959
Ulrich’s discovery of guts is cause for organization wide concern
Daredevil Comics Born Again 1986
As we get closer and closer to election day (or should I say the day when the votes are counted since early voting has started in some states) there has been a small tremor that lately has gotten less and less press both in Massachusetts and nationwide. That is the effect of citizen activists taking an interest in the vote.
No I’m not talking about the activists that the Democrat party funds via Government Largess via Unions etc such as Neighbor to Neighbor in Worcester and ACORN who like the machines of old are tasked with providing the vote totals the left needs by shall we say , all necessary means. I’m referring to the grass roots tea party folk whose involvement in electoral politics is cause for organization wide concern for the left.
When the large tea party groups held their rallies in Washington, while there was some surprise there was very little worry on the left or the media. After all annually the March For Life protests was (and still is) the largest protest in Washington and the MSM has successfully ignored its numbers to the point where the hundreds of thousands of people who participate might as well be invisible. The left was sure they could count on the MSM to downplay the numbers and effect of these crowd.
But something different happened when the tea party folks made it home. Something the left did not suspect.
Our friends from the left, so used to their own paid protesters and rent-a-mobs, assumed that once there was a picture for the media to see people would simply fade away until the next media opt.
Then never imagined that without the pay from a large organization that people might actually get involved.
With Scott Brown’s victor in January of 2010 came the first actual shock to the left, the idea that there might be something going on here. 10 months later the results of the house elections gave the left another huge shock. 63 seats worth of shock.
In Massachusetts the left woke up in time for the election. The hand that they had kept behind their back because it wasn’t needed was brought out. The left and the union had people all over the state, making sure the Bay State remained solidly in the “D” Column.
The left breathed a huge sigh of relief in the state figuring this was the high water mark for the right.
Then came the official loss of an electoral seat, then came the retirement of Barney Frank,
and then came people like Bonnie Johnson a tea party activist who started delivering some startling news concerning the law in Massachusetts:
Every January Massachusetts Cities and town send out a city/town census to every residence. It lists the registered voters in the dwelling and how they are registered. I’ve filled it out every year without a thought, not noticing the warnings on the form if it is not done.
I had filled out the form for years not thinking a word about not realizing its significance
If the form is not returned the people on them are marked as an “inactive” voter. By law an “inactive” voter who attempts to vote must fill out and sign a form and provide proof of both residence and identity to be able to vote.
The law had been on the books for a long time but when you never have contested elections nobody really cared about it, she visited tea party groups in the states and delivered the message:
The problem seems to be a lot of people are not aware of the law, and if you want it enforced you need people at the polls volunteering and working to ensure it IS enforced.
The results have been training session that taught people what the rules were and how to be sure they were enforced while poll watching, at the time I asked Bonnie Johnson how this works:
DaTechGuy: Now how would the poll worker know that it’s an inactive voter is there like an “I” next to it someplace?”
Bonnie Johnson: There’ a lower case “i” next to their name.
DTG: Now is the poll worker required to demand this or does an observer have to bring this up from your experience?
BJ: The Poll worker should demand this.
DTG: So if the poll worker doesn’t demand it, if you are an observer you can say “This person was inactive, you are required to do this.”
DTG: And this is by state law?
But nobody had been enforcing the law, why bother? the elections in Massachusetts were as contested as elections in Iraq during the Saddam era, but now you have people being forced to enforce the law with the following result
BJ: In Worcester 99,000 voters 46% of them became inactive when they did this.
Remember Worcester is the 2nd biggest city in New England Behind Boston and Scott Brown lost the city by just under 2000 votes out of 38,282 cast. The number of now inactive votes exceeds the total number of votes cast in the 2010 special election. In Boston Scott Brown lost the city by 38 points. Just under 60,000 votes. Imagine if you are a democrat poll and a well funded Scott Brown campaign has poll watchers in every precinct who KNOW THE RULES.
What might happen, stuff like this perhaps?
Fast forward to this year’s state primary election, held on September 6, 2012. Countercharges, of voter fraud and “voter suppression,” were levied by and against Worcester Tea Party observers on that day. Worcester Tea Party members say that they observed people being escorted into the polling precincts, again by Neighbor to Neighbor wearing their purple shirts. In addition, allegations of voters showing resident alien – green cards – as identification were witnessed. The observers tried to document this and were thrown out of the polling location, they would say illegally, for doing so.
City officials, led by Councilor Saral Rivera, stormed into the voting precinct to allege voter intimidation by the neutral observers, to the Democratic primary. Numerous hearings have been held by both the City Council and the Election Commission to determine what happened on that day. As the New York based newspaper up the street’s editorial board has said no credible evidence has been presented showing voter intimidation. So far little evidence has been found that the Election Commission has refused to call for a formal investigation.
And when the author of this piece Rob Eno of Red Mass Group tweeted out things like this
— Rob Eno (@Robeno) September 6, 2012
And you saw angry tweets like this one from SEIU people in reply:
— Chris Condon (@condonchris) September 6, 2012
oh Harassing it it? Well if those tea party folks were harassing people instead of making sure the law is obeyed I’m sure the Worcester Election commission dominated by democrats would demand an investigation to make sure voters aren’t being intimidated….
The Election Commission is holding off, at least for the time being, on calling for a formal investigation into allegations that some observers violated the rights of voters during the Sept. 6 state primary.
But…but the harassment, the intimidation of minority voters, surely the people victimized by these scurrilous actions complained. Surely groups like Neighbor to Neighbor being community organizers devoted to protecting the rights of voters have submitted this information to the city or the state…
it was pointed out that no formal written complaints or affidavits have been filed by any poll wardens or aggrieved parties with either the Election Commission or the secretary of state’s office.
No complaints, no affidavits no sworn statements? If this is true the question is WHY?
I suspect the answer is closely related to a question I asked a few weeks ago concerning the left’s complaints over voter ID laws in Pennsylvania:
Why should producing an ID change the result of any election?
Why should the use of an item needed at any bank, to cash any paycheck or government check, to use a credit card, an item you are asked to produce at a hospital, at a supermarket or even to buy booze cause the results of an election to change? Do Democrats need these ID less that republicans?
The answer is simple. There are no affidavits because those would be declarations made under oath that would have to be defended in open court. Just like showing an ID or filling out an affidavit for a provisional ballot would be a declaration under oath that a voter is who they say they are and live where they say they live.
In a federal election that’s a federal offense.
In 1941 Lyndon Johnson ran in a special election for the US Senate, his primary opponent was the sitting Governor Pappy O’Daniel. Johnson campaigned hard (nobody worked harder at campaigning than Lyndon Johnson) and was not shy about stealing or buying votes either, but Johnson make the fatal mistake allowing some of his “owned” precincts report early giving O’Daniel the ability to know how many votes he needed to steal/buy/fix to win this election.
Robert Caro in his first volume on Lyndon Johnson “The Path to Power” told of Johnson’s reaction on page 739:
Johnson’s reaction was to try to steal it back. Telephoning George Paar, he asked the Duke of Duval to give him more votes. But Parr Refused; he later told friends he replied “Lyndon, I’ve been to the federal penitentiary, and I’m not going back for you.”
The left can bluster, they can scream and they can cry, but as long as there are tea party people watching, as long as the activists are ready and educated on the law, as long as campaigns like Scott Brown has the money to make sure that any person trying to cast an illegal ballot. (or should be call them undocumented ballots) will be challenged and subject to the full penalty of the law then those who have been unchallenged for years will think long and hard before they take that risk.
THAT is why the left is fighting so hard, THAT is why there is worry, that is why we are reduced to polls like Sunday’s Columbus Dispatch suggesting somehow Mitt Romney with 90% of the GOP vote and with 40.8 of the independent votes vs 41.7 to Obama is somehow down by 9.
And it’s also why they are not covering what the Tea Party is doing as Glenn Reyonlds reports:
the mainstream press isn’t very interested in covering this kind of thing anyway. Stories about Obama grassroots organizers in 2008 were fine. Stories about the Tea Party organizing this time around would conflict with the preferred (if somewhat contradictory) narratives that the Tea Party is (1) just a bunch of billionaire-funded astroturf; and (2) a preserve of racist “bitter clingers” who are too busy digging for Obama birth certificates to engage in hard political work.
Either way, these kinds of initiatives will make a difference. The question, again, is whether they’ll make enough of a difference.
That is the big fear, what do you do if there is a pool of activists not controlled by a major party, a group that you can’t office political goodies to in the hope they will simply go away?
You can’t do a damn thing about them, you can holy hope to outwork them with your paid guys.
That’s why I’m still very confident in saying this:
And if you think they are demoralized now, wait till AFTER this election.
Update: Oh BTW here is a bit of news that you might not have heard:
A Commonwealth Court judge said Thursday that he was considering allowing most of the state’s controversial voter identification law to remain intact for the November election and was contemplating only a very narrow injunction.
Judge Robert E. Simpson Jr. said at the end of the second and last day of a hearing on whether to halt voter ID requirements for the Nov. 6 election that he was considering an injunction that would target the portion of the law that deals with provisional ballots.
You can tell what the folks at Philly.com think of it by the title in the link…
Yup I trust these guys for clean unfiltered news.