Saturday, September 20, 2008

Voter Suppression Underway In Wisconsin

In one of the most egregious exercises in voter suppression I've ever seen, J.B. Van Hollen, Republican State Attorney General of Wisconsin, is attempting a last minute blatant purging of voter records in the state which could affect as many as 1 million voters in Wisconsin.As noted :

"Van Hollen's suit would require election officials to conform to a recent federal law and cross check all new voter registrations or voter change of address since 2006. Opponents said that would create havoc during the election."

In a prepostorous statement on Thursday he denied consulting with Republican party officials or the McCain campaign:

"Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said this afternoon he never discussed his lawsuit against the state's election authority with the state Republican Party or the presidential campaign of U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona before he filed the suit.

"There was no discussion with anybody involved in leadership with the Republican Party (or the McCain campaign) about this lawsuit before it was brought," he said.

The comments from Van Hollen came just hours after Van Hollen aide Kevin St. John left open the possibility that had happened.

Van Hollen said he did not believe any of his aides discussed the matter with the party or campaign either.

"I can't say for certain what they have or haven't done with every minute of their day any more than they could speak about mine, but I have no reason to believe - none of them have reported to me - that anybody involved in the Republican Party or the McCain campaign about this lawsuit," he said."

Oh, by the way, Van Hollen is the co-chair of the McCain campaign in Wisconsin. Sensing that the credulity of even the most brain-dead observer was being streched thin a new statement was issued:

"The lead Department of Justice attorney for Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen’s lawsuit against the state’s election authority met with Republican Party representatives about a week before filing the suit.Justice attorney Steven Means said Friday he met with Republican attorneys Chris Mohrman and Jim Troupis at their request to discuss the Government Accountability Board’s policy on checking voter information. Other Republicans participated in the meeting via conference call, but Means said he could not recall who they were.

Van Hollen sued the board last week to force it to check more voters to make sure their voter registration information matches driver’s license records. The suit could affect 241,000 to 1 million voters.

Van Hollen, a Wisconsin co-chairman of the presidential campaign of John McCain, has said the lawsuit was not motivated by partisan ties. On Thursday, he said he knew of no contacts between his agency and the Republican Party about the issue.

Since then, the department has said at least two attorneys had contact with the party before the suit was filed."

At this point citizens of some countries would be re-enacting the villagers' march on Baron von Frankenstein's castle, the Democrats, however could only muster the following somewhat less than outraged comment:

"State Democratic Party Chairman Joe Wineke said the visit by Means to GOP lawyers showed that Republicans are “using the chief law enforcement officer of the state to do Republican shenanigans.”

Shenanigans hardly describes mass disenfranchisment of the electorate. Is it too late to call in observers from the EU or perhaps the Central Election Commission of the Russian Federation?

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