True the vote? My ass!

By Jace, a Trail Mix Contributor

It’s not who votes that counts, but rather who counts the votes.

Seldom has a political party adopted this philosophy with more relish than the modern GOP, in the cases of the vote suppressors that have sprung up in many states. Who votes (or not) is important. Very important.

voterids1New regulations designed to keep people from voting have fallen from the sky like so many dry leaves from a tree. Ostensibly, if you listen to the promoters of these schemes, to protect us from the tidal wave of voter fraud that has swept the nation. (There may be as many as two or three cases prosecuted every election cycle.) Obviously the life of the Republic hangs in the balance. God save us!

Restrictive voter ID requirements, reduced early voting periods, reduced polling places, and purged voter rolls, all combine to disenfranchise millions.

I have said on this site before that there is no larger or more fundamental issue that receives less attention than voter suppression. Any candidate for any office that is worth their salt should make this ‘crime’ a cornerstone of their campaign.

Alas, not holding my breath.


62 thoughts on “True the vote? My ass!”

  1. jace, excellent post.

    pbs newshour’s data team back in 2014 at midterm election did a report titled  22 countries where voting is mandatory
    Despite all of the U.S. media’s fanfare about Tuesday’s midterm elections, most eligible voters likely will duck their civic duties on Election Day. Historically, nearly one-third fewer U.S. voters show up to the polls during a midterm election than a presidential election.
    However, 22 nations around the world make voting mandatory for its citizens, often starting at age 18, according to the CIA World Factbook. Several of these countries are in Latin America with a handful allowing citizens to age out of compulsory voting by as early as age 65. In Australia, failure to vote can result in a $20 fine, The New York Times reported.

    back in june 2015  nbc quoted her “We should be clearing the way for people to vote not putting up every roadblock that can be imagined,” Clinton said Thursday at Texas Southern University after receiving a leadership award named after Texas civil rights icon Barbara Jordan. 

    and here’s faux news covering (or burying it as they’re wont to do)

    Hillary Clinton Calls For Automatic Voter Registration At Age 18 – Voter Fraud – Outnumbered

  2. on another subject, alexandra petri:

    Now Trump and Bernie Sanders, the two most consistent and exciting candidates, are being hoist by their own transcripts. Sanders kept trying to insist that the answer to every foreign policy question was a vote he had made in 2002. Which — okay? It works without a follow-up. But with follow-up, it can be devastating. (Daily News: “Where would a President Sanders imprison, interrogate? What would you do?” Sanders: “Actually I haven’t thought about it a whole lot.”)

    Trump’s charisma has been hard to quell. Insinuating that all his fans were failures and bigots didn’t do it. But revealing that he is not, in fact, smarter than a fifth grader — that he lacks a “great brain” — just might.

    The great sustaining myth of Trump was that behind the scenes there was a guy who knew what he was doing and that he would eventually emerge from the fray and be “so presidential” that “you will be bored to tears.”

    Up until this past week, Trump had managed to coast by on charisma for the 30 seconds of answer required.


    But remove the laughter and the applause and you have — a man who is very clearly not answering the question and is fumbling around for an answer until he finds an applause-worthy talking point. And when he has to answer a question for more than 30 seconds, that becomes painfully obvious.

    “I have a great brain” is a nice, easy statement to disprove.

    Read any transcript and it is just The Donald helplessly repeating the same simple third-grade-level phrases over and over again. It’s not presidential, just boring.

  3. Great, timely post, Jace. Why would only pugn state governments pass laws that impede access to the ballot box? (Please, ignore the sarcasm,  or don’t ).

    Poobah,  just saw a Buick commercial that reminds me of you.  Guy forgot to lock his car and when wife asked he locked it from the beach via an app. Wife said, and you closed the windows at their home? He said of course. Cut to apartment full of pigeons.

  4. Well Done Jace!!

    On Voting, there might be something that could be done for Federal elections either by law or Constitutional Amendment (good luck with those) or by reinstating voting rights legislation.  On the state level, much dicier with all of the “states’ rights” arguments through the courts.  In the meantime, winning offices and doing some reverse gerrymandering could have some effect.  Just get out and vote … oh that might not work.


    Who did what when is still being argued though suspicions run rampant.  The main thing to know despite how it might be worded by Sanders when asked is this:

    Father Federico Lombardi, the Pope’s spokesman, said Sanders had been invited “not by the pope but by the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.” Lombardi told the Italian news agency Ansa: “For the moment there is no expectation that there will also be a meeting with the pope.”

    And a song for Mr. Trump:


  5. Patd,

    Our voter participation is low and that is a sad state of affairs. For those who refuse to participate, there is probably no answer.

    For others however, things such as vote by mail and early voting seem to be very popular. One of the reasons no doubt republicans are so anxious to limit those options.

  6. Jamie,


    A single uniform standard for voting would certainly be desirable. Like you I think that is a pipe dream.

    All the more reason in my opinion to make sure that the next president is one who will nominate like minded judges to the Federal Courts and the Supreme Court. A new and improved voting rights act would be a good start.Absent that, the restoration of the original voting right act would be a step in the right direction.

    Just as with Citizens United, if there is to be any change in voting access it will most likely take place in the courts.

    All the more reason in my opinion to get out and vote Dem. (Vote early and vote often)

  7. “Why would only pugn state governments pass laws that impede access to the ballot box? (Please, ignore the sarcasm,  or don’t ).”


    Could it be because, that almost without exception, when voter turnout is high, those sorry bastards lose?

    (Your sarcasm was most appropriate and much appreciated LOL)

  8. Jace…  excellent topic…

    Actually, I should have done a posting on this already seeing how I registered people to vote for 20+ yrs.  After I retired, a tea-party led legislature enacted a voter ID law here in NH.  Luckily…  one only needs a driver’s license, a military ID, or a state issued ID (which is easy to obtain).  But every time I go to vote and take out my license, I want to scream “Republicans suck!”….   of course I refrain…  it’s not the people working the polls that enacted that effing law.

  9. daily kos

    So, let’s get this straight: Bernie is attending a conference in Vatican City just days before the must-win New York primary. That’s odd right there. Also, the conference runs from April 15-16…a day after the next debate with Hillary Clinton. And because the Vatican’s time zone is several hours before ours, it seems that Sanders would have to hop on a plane as soon as the debate ends and hope to catch a few ZZZs on the way in order to get there in time. Additionally, there’s zero indication that he’ll actually meet with Pope Francis…who surely doesn’t want to appear to play favorites in American electoral politics. Then he’ll have to fly all the way back to the states for some last minute campaigning before the 19th.

    It’s just so damn weird. Is Bernie really going to do this?


    Jamie, confirming that multi-tweet you showed us last thread,  daily kos also had this quote:

    The Sanders campaign referred POLITICO to Michael Shank, a media consultant who works with Sachs and said he “occasionally” handles press relations for Vatican conferences.

    Reports that Sanders had said that Pope Francis himself had invited him were incorrect, Shank said, but he argued that the invitation had effectively come from the Vatican. “The PASS is part of the Vatican. So the senator is right when he says the Vatican invited him,” he said. 

    Adding to the confusion, Sachs said that he had helped the Vatican arrange the invitation to Sanders.


  10. So let me understand this. Bernie hired a media consultant to get an invitation to attend the meeting at the Vatican?   Well, makes sense.  Effectively he was invited by the Vatican. LOL

  11. RR,


    In the 04 general our eldest daughter then attending college in Ohio waited in line more than 4 hrs to mark a ballot that took about 4 minutes. She waited them out, many others went home. She believes to this day that the lines were deliberate creations. I have no reason to doubt her.

  12. pogo, no no, the media consultant works for jeffrey sachs who according to cnn’s op ed page endorsed sanders and is director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University. He is a foreign policy adviser to Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. The views expressed are his own.

    the bern wouldn’t stooped to such a thing.  but maybe his friend jeff would. 🙂

  13. pogo, Jeffrey is also one of the speakers from quadrangle online:

    According to the organisers inRome, Sanders will be joined at the conference by the Bolivian president, Evo Morales, the socialist former leader of a coca-growers union who was the first president to come from the country’s indigenous majority, the Ecuadorian president, Rafael Correa, and professor Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University in NY.


    The political revolution that Bernie Sanders is campaigning on is about to go worldwide as the Democratic presidential candidate has accepted an invitation to speak at the Vatican on social, economic, and environmental issues.

    The Vermont Senator will speak at the conference on April 15th, a day after a high-profile debate with rival Hillary Clinton and just four days before the NY primary.

    Sanders, who is Jewish but whose wife is Catholic, has frequently expressed respect for Francis, who was treated to a rock-star reception on an inaugural tour of the United States previous year.

  14. It’s not just Republican states. It’s states that would otherwise be Democrat. States across the South where impediments to registration have been systemized for decades. And who has ever heard of a minority felon regaining civil rights after serving mandated time? Why bother~~~

  15. Back to the last thread. I was not being silly when I suggested leaving a note. For us it worked especially well with squirrels. But most of all, it recognized that, no matter how badly they treated us, that they were here first. And it allowed us to take the next step dispassionately. Peace

  16. from sherpaguides:

    The most legitimate concern about these birds involves the transmission of diseases. Diseases associated with pigeons that are a threat to humans are directly linked to their droppings.

    “Pigeons can pose a health hazard, but in many instances, that is blown out of proportion. Most of the risk of disease is from the accumulation of droppings in soil that provides a good media for the bacteria to grow in,” said Armstrong.
    Two diseases in particular may manifest in pigeon droppings. They include histoplasmosis, which occurs in droppings on the soil under roost sites, and cryptococcosis, which is found in droppings at elevated roost sites. In both cases, the amount of droppings plays a role. For instance, histoplasmosis usually doesn’t flourish until droppings have accumulated for three or more years. There must also be a large flock of birds in one roosting site. “If there are 75 birds roosting in a vacant building then you have a problem,” said Cockrum.
    The USDA serves to reduce conflicts between pigeons and humans and takes four approaches in dealing with problem pigeons. The first approach is habitat modification. Roosting areas are identified, and ledges are modified so that pigeons can’t land there. Materials such as porcupine wires, which consist of spikes that prevent pigeons from landing, are installed on ledges. An angled board or piece of tin may also be used.
    One successful example of habitat modification can be found on the renowned Big Chicken in Marietta. Built by Kentucky Fried Chicken, the structure was destroyed several years ago by a tornado, but it was believed to have been weakened by pigeon droppings. When it was built the second go-round, spikes were added on the top to prevent pigeons from landing there and roosting. The modification has worked on the Big Chicken as well as on other sites. “The Big Chicken” is a well known Marietta landmark that rises above a KFC restaurant at the intersection of Cobb Parkway and Roswell Road. It is a large steel-sided structure with a moving beak and eyes.

  17. in case you missed it last night

    rachel maddow  reports on a new video from House Speaker Paul Ryan that is so plainly a campaign ad that it calls into question Ryan’s insistence that he is not angling for consideration for the presidential nomination and recalls his insistence that he didn’t want to be speaker (until he did).

  18. Pat, I’ve been fortunate–I’ve had both histo and cocci. It goes with where one has lived and been stationed and the living and working conditions one has experienced. The last diagnosis was in the early 1970s while stationed outside of Columbus, OH. The previous was while at Nevada. In both cases, the working conditions favored growth of the bacteria. Biggest problem was having docs recognizing the diseases and their symptoms.

  19. Regarding wildlife and its dangers :
    Our former neighborhood consisted of 1900 – 1915 buildings, a mix of arts & crafts bungalows and big 4 squares. We had a smallish big 4 square with large brackets under the eaves. These brackets made great roosts for pigeons. When the garden and lawn had enough poop, I climbed a ladder and nailed black screen material into the middle of bracket gaps. I didn’t leave enough room on either side of the screen for the pigeons to roost.  Woodpeckers started a few holes in the brackets, which the squirrels expanded. That caused me to climb the ladder, and fill the holes with bondo and repaint. The pigeons also pooped all over our deck furniture, but the squirrels ate the chairs. The tables, rails, and shelves were cast iron and marble, and so relatively impervious to squirrels. Since we moved, I haven’t seen a pigeon. Good thing, because while I suspect that I am past climbing ladders, Sweetie is absolutely certain of it.

  20. “Alas, not holding my breath.”  –  Jace

    No ‘alas’ about it. I damn glad you aren’t holding your breath.

  21. craig, go to amazon and get a windowsill Greenhouse 24-Plant Starter Kit  for all your pigeon windows.  put those feathered beasties to work as tenant farmers. make use of their poop and penchant for eating plant pests and reap the eatables as well as supporting the trail.

    why kill or maim when one can profitably enslave?

  22. We have lots and lots of red birds, yellow birds, woodpeckers and blah birds.  Also crows.  They moved on when my cat took an interest in them.  Overhead are hawks, osprey and eagles.  The starlings are here for a week or so in the spring but leave for some reason of which I am not privy too.  There is one pigeon here on the peninsula, it is banded and seems tame.  I do not know where it lives.

    This last week a chunk of bird with black feathers appeared in the back yard.  I guess that is the last of that bird.  Large enough to have been a crow.

    Any time I look up and see the hawks and eagles I bring the cats back in.  Chunky would give them lot to think about if one tried to take her.  That is if they could even lift her off the ground.  Boo would be a furry snack.

    Colorado, that state of mile high Republican citizens, is doing something about not having a caucus or primary.  They are fighting over delegates at a nice hotel in Colorado Springs.  The weird hair guy blew off the state and has left it to the guy most likely to be hated in the Senate.

    And, coming up is Maryland.  The state which plays a tiny role in nominating a candidate.  The exercise is more to test the voting machines than to do anything about political candidates.

  23. boss, there’s a backup thread for tomorrow awaiting if you don’t have anything better.

  24. Tony – not an unexpected result.  If HRC had spent a few days popping ar0und the state she might have gotten one more delegate.  Wyoming is conservative.  The story might be that Bernie won any delegates.

    But, for seven delegates she did good.

    I am waiting to see what is going to happen in NY.  As we are seeing from the Republican base movement (BM) is the shift from the crazy white guy with the weird color hair to the crazy white guy with the Bryl Cream hair (youngsters ask your grandfather).  The same is going to happen now as people start paying attention to politics.  We are still months away from the general population paying attention though.

  25. BB

    Yes, i’m waiting for NY and hoping Hillary can really win handily enough to stop any talk from Sanders he might have  a pathway to the nomination..This is part of what was in a Hillary campaign mailer today, of course for cash

    tony, Bernie’s campaign has a new strategy — in states they didn’t win like Nevada and Florida, they’re flooding local conventions with volunteers to try to “steal” delegates for Bernie, overturning the will of the voters.“Steal” isn’t my word. It’s what one of Bernie’s former top staffers said: “Volunteers mobilized to get tons of people to show up to the state convention and actually steal the day for Bernie.”If they can’t win contests outright, they’ve decided to try and sway superdelegates and even pledged delegates to their side — and in some states, it’s working. That means we need to bring home even BIGGER wins in New York, Pennsylvania, and more to make sure voters’ voices get heard and Hillary wins this nomination.”

  26. Pretend you are a male to female transgender person.  If you are very lucky who have the right physical attributes, petite, soft face, small hands, small shoulders and tiny feet.  The rest of us do not have those details.  For many of us life is like everyday outing ourselves.  That includes the pain and agony of not fitting others perceptions of what we should be.

    Life is not easy.  Many transpeople kill themselves rather than put up with it.

    The rest of us muddle through life putting up with an occasional “sir” or “lady” when we wish it did not happen.  Those are the pronouns from our friends, they make mistakes (and many feel bad about doing so).  Those who wish we have crappy lives do it on purpose.  To bully and torment us.

    I occasionally travel to N.C. on official federal government business.  Up till now I only concerned myself with typical “woman traveling alone” things.  Now I have to be considerate of a state government wanting to arrest me.  Although I travel knowing that the state of North Carolina is using an unconstitutional state law to guard the potty, it is the time in jail and the cost of defending myself for using the loo that I do not look forward to.

    The state law will be laid to the side by Romer v Evans.

  27. Blue,

    You could call ahead to the Office of the US Attorney for the District of North Carolina, and tell them of your mission and your plight. Ask him/her if (s)he would please get a Fed Court injunction against enforcement of the shitter statute, perhaps for the duration of your stay in unAmerica.

  28. There are plastic owls on many store roofs here.  Some make a random, clicking noise.  The gas station also has a hawk sound to disperse the pigeons.  Yes, birds are filthy, but no reason to kick or hit them.  We hung aluminum,  pie plates in our cherry trees when I was a kid.  Later, the free AOL CDs came in handy.  Pinwheels are only handy if it’s windy.

  29. blue- don’t forget when things suck- there is a whole group of friends here who have your back.  .  hugs

  30. A show of hands, please.  How many women here have used the men’s room because line in the ladies’ room was too long?

    I have.

    So, why shouldn’t someone who identifies one way or the other, do their business where they are most comfortable?
    How has this become an issue?  Clearly, the far’t must be in panic mode, as they see their worldview obliterated by the real world.  It is both sad and fitting that their last stand should be in the toilet.

  31. The Federal Government can’t get its work done, if the Federal employees are at risk of incarceration or worse at the hands of ruthless demagogues.

  32. There is a hilarious musical called, “Urinetown.”  A bit of a tangent, but it involved the gov’t getting involved in bodily functions.

  33. Surely North Carolinians can remember the ‘li’l house out back’, where any White could find relief, no matter which gender.

  34. Definitely hit the men’s.  Those theater intermission lines for the ladies are insane.

  35. It is an ugly thing that NC and others want to do.   I understand that my choice (urgent need) to use the first, available facility is not the same as someone being told where they must go based on the gender on their birth certificate.

    It is hopeful to see businesses standing up to this hateful decree with, as far as I can tell, no use other than to harass people.  So, as the opposition continues to grow, know that this, too, shall pass.


  36. Perhaps, your boss and your Senator’s office could bring this to the attention of the US AG, and she could direct one of her assistants to arrange for you to get help from the US Attorney and the US Marshal for the District of North Carolina.

  37. As I sat down to left over pizza, Nascar was having its invocation, in Texas, by some idiot. As he finished the last praise Jesus, he begged God to choose a christian man for our next president.  That was almost an hour ago and I’m still seething. To top it off, this was followed by military honor guards and flyovers and the Star Spangled Banner sung as if it were a dirge. And our dollars pay for this unconstitutional use of our airwaves and military.

    ps B.B. when you need to use the facilities we’re open in SC and we’re not closing.

  38. A beautiful day here. Intermittent showers temperature in the mid 60’s. An evening so still that not even a palm  moves. Patio door open, my favorite Ravel on the player. Shepard’s pie in the oven.

    Life is almost always good. Sometimes it is just fantastic!

  39. BB,

    My heart goes out to you.. What NC and other states with these horrific new laws are doing is inhuman. I’m so hoping the loss of cash and business will somehow get the laws rescinded.. Sorry

  40. The preacher could mean dennis ‘suffer little children to come unto me’ hastert, or maybe preacherman robert ‘taken in adultery’ bentley.

  41. Flatus,

    By any chance did the this whited sepulchre ask his god for a Canadian Christian president ?

  42. Jamie,


    I have wondered the same thing.

    From my perspective , it is most often easier to beg forgiveness than to seek permission. I think that he should go for it if the obstruction continues. The worst that can happen is the High Court would find his move unconstitutional.

    Not likely, they want another judge and they will be quite happy with Garland.

  43. The preacher could mean dennis ‘suffer little children to come unto me’ hastert, or maybe preacherman robert ‘taken in adultery’ bentley.”


    Kinda’ got take your hat off to these ‘family values republicans’. They’re consistent. They never met a family value that they couldn’t invalidate.

  44. As the US Senate and House are not doing anything anyway, we could save the taxpayers a lot of money by turning off all the lights, phones, water, and paychecks, and security at the Capitol, and the free flights on military aircraft for the bums and their spouses.

  45. How about this? When Bernie apologizes for calling HRC unqualified to be president. Then the Big Dawg can consider a sop to Bernie until then Bernie can STFU about Bill Clinton. Last I checked, William Jefferson Clinton was not running for anything. Just another case of Bernie firing for range rather than firing for effect. Big difference.


    Trying to confirm the accuracy of this one.  It indicates sent to over 2000 in boxes, but I don’t have the source so it could be someone’s idea of a bad joke.  If not, it is one of the stupidest political moves ever.  Using the Pope as a shill to raise campaign funds?  Really?


    The nerve of Bernie.. What the hell is he attacking Bill for? Anything to go negative.. The man really is a fake from what i always thought.. I wonder how he would like it should Hillary’s campaign go after Jane?

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