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October 13, 2004

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Thanks for grabbing this one. I read this story as I was wrestling my image into semi-submission, and hoped someone who wasn't being driven to despair by the vagaries of Typepad might post on it.

I so completely loathe people who do this sort of thing. I am reminded of a story I heard about 20 years ago about someone who had the clever idea of pretending to have a heart attack in Central Park, having someone take him into their apartment while waiting for an ambulance, and then robbing them: it's so much worse than ordinary robbery, since it undercuts our trust in something that really matters. Or maybe a politician I once encountered who was subsequently indicted for embezzling state funds set aside for educating the mentally retarded, which made me wonder: why on earth wouldn't he stick to embezzling highway funds or something? Ugh.

Speaking as someone who had to drive for a half hour yesterday to reregister, this does not amuse, in that exciting Queen-Victoria-chilly-reptilian-stare kind of way. No lawyer, but it looks like there's enough on the NV group to indict and enough circumstantial links between the NV and the OR entities to justify an investigation.

These allegations are sort of content-less, but it's a Republican making them and up to 6 related resignations, so it might be worth additional poking.

These guys probably need to be locked up.

And, as a general rule of thumb, people shouldn't register to vote through volunteer organizations for precisely this reason.

gee, republicans, go figure

There's more here. They seem to have been doing similar things in PA and WV as well. (Not actually throwing away registration cards, but registering only Republicans.)

hey, don't you read my updates?

I really think ACT is orders of magnitude more legit than these guys, but the safest bet is probably doing it yourself.

Let's not get all muddled. . . I think it waters down the sin here.

Registering only Republicans is, I believe, perfectly fine. I think it's pretty shoddy, violates the spirit of honest democracy, and I would never consider it myself, but that's the worst it is. Targeting registration drives at areas that vote heavily one way or the other is basically a roundabout way of doing the same thing.

On the other hand tearing up registrations is not only illegal, it is treasonous.

Oops.

sidereal--are you sure it's legal? Mass. is either pretty strict about separating registration and partisan activities, or our candidates are super-careful, because this so, so would not fly for any campaign I've worked for...you're not allowed to be wearing a button when you register voters.

Also, they're probably violating the trademark rights of the actual "America Votes". And it's further evidence that the same group is involved, and if they're doing one thing in Nevada they may also be doing it elsewhere. (It's not clear whether the shredding is especially zealous supervisors or it's condoned or even encouraged by the company.)

"sidereal--are you sure it's legal?"

No, not at all. I drew that from the "even if it's not illegal" from the quoted article.

I don't think it should be illegal, though I do believe it's unethical. Like I said, you'd have to extend the same principle and say it's illegal to only register in urban areas, since you'd go heavily Democrat, so you'd be legally required to provide 'equal time' registration in suburban areas. Silly, but that's where it leads.

I actually hate all registration drives. I'm not interested in stopping people from registering, but just make it easy and let people do it on their own.

Well, it doesn't HAVE to lead there and there are good arguments against it. I mean, what if you don't have a car?

I'm not polling voters first should be illegal either, but it's sketchy when they're not honest about it.

sigh

Also, Sproul & Associates got close to $500,000 from the Republican party for "political consulting" as well as the $125,000 for voter registration I noted above.

I just register everyone, which just goes to show that Sebastian and I can't agree on anything... sigh. I actually think it's fun, but then I'm the sort of person who actually likes talking to strangers about why their vote counts, and why even if it didn't, the mere act of registering can help their community.

My very Republican brother (as in, two pictures of Ronald Reagan on his desk, campaigned for Bush I) did voter registration in college here in Los Angeles. And he was always very clear that ALL party registrations had to be accepted, even if the person was registering as a Democrat and not a Republican. Not just legally required, but ethically, too.

As a yellow-dog Democrat, I have to say I'm really looking forward to the day when ethical and responsible people are in charge of the Republican party again and we can have reasonable discussions that don't devolve into, "All Democrats are traitors!"

(I know you guys don't do that here. That's why I sneak in every once in awhile. That, and Moe's friends with Rivka at Respectful of Otters, which is an endorsement in and of itself.)

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