Voter ID = Democratic Vote Suppression

If there was any doubt that Voter ID laws are little more than a transparent attempt to suppress Democratic votes, the jury is in highlights via TPM:

# 21.8% of black Indiana voters do not have access to a valid photo ID
(compared to 15.8% of white Indiana voters – a 6 point gap).

# When non-registered eligible voter responses are included – the
gap widens. 28.3% of eligible black voters in the State of Indiana to
not have valid photo ID (compared to 16.8% of eligible voting age white
Indiana residents – a gap of 11.5 percent).

# The study found what it termed “a curvilinear pattern (similar to
an upside down U-curve)” in the relationship between age and access to
valid ID – younger voters and older voters were both less likely to
have valid ID compared to voters in the middle categories. 22% of
voters 18-34 did not have ID, nor did 19.4% over the age of 70.
(compared to 16.2% of Indiana voters age 35-54 without valid ID and
14.1% for 55-69 year olds).

# 21% of Indiana registered voters with only a high school diploma
did not have valid ID (compared to 11.5% of Indiana voters who have
completed college – a gap of 9.5%).

# Those with valid ID are much more likely to be Republicans than
those who do not have valid ID. Among registered voters with proper ID,
41.6% are registered Republicans, 32.5% are Democrats.

Kevin Drum has excerpted some nice graphs and adds a terrific final comment:

By a substantial margin, the Indiana residents most likely to
possess photo ID turn out to be whites, the middle aged, and
high-income voters. And while this is undoubtedly just a wild
coincidence, these are also the three groups most like to vote for
Republicans. (2006 exit poll data here for the suspicious.) Overall, 91% of registered Republicans had photo IDs compared to only 83% of registered Democrats.

But like I said, this is probably just a coincidence. I'm sure Karl
Rove and the RNC had no idea that the demographics broke down like
this. Right?

There is no widespread voter fraud.  We are simply seeing a Republican attempt to use the institutions of government to further tilt the playing field in their favor. 

Giuliani the “moderate”

I was originally going to write this post about how Giuliani is just a nut and doesn't get any flack for it in the mainstream media.  Those of us who pay attention know that his foreign policy views are to the right of Dick Cheney and probably even more ill-considered.  The utter foolishness and inanity of his policy proposals is breathtaking.  To wit (from Carpetbagger):

He promised to end ?overspending by government,
overtaxing by government, overregulating by government and oversuing?
by Americans.

To cut government spending, Giuliani promised to replace only
half of the federal workers expected to retire over the next eight to
10 years
. He promised to retain the tax cuts put in place by the
Bush administration. Those two actions, he said, would require that
average Americans take more responsibility for their lives. (emphasis
added).

The suggestion is absolutely absurd on its face (nice elaboration here).  When you do the math and learn that it means we would could lose 1/3 of the federal work force in a decade, you realize how profoundly unserious Giuliani actually is when it comes to government and policy. 

I was going to leave it at that, but I later came across a terrific Glenn Greenwald post on Giuliani.  Greenwald rightly excoriates the mainstream media for insisting that Giuliani is a moderate:

The very idea that Giuliani is a “moderate” or a “centrist” is
completely absurd. Regarding the issues over which the next President
will have the greatest influence — foreign policy and presidential
powers — Giuliani is as far to what is now considered the “Right” as
it gets. His views on foreign policy are far more radical and bellicose
even than Dick Cheney's, and his view of presidential powers makes
George Bush look like Thomas Jefferson.

This whole “moderate” myth is grounded exclusively in Giuliani's
non-doctrinaire views of social issues. But that's pure fallacy.
Political ideology doesn't function like mathematics, where two numbers
situated on opposite extreme poles can be averaged together to produce
a nice, comfortable number in the middle.

That isn't how political ideology works. A warmonger with
authoritarian impulses and liberal positions on social issues isn't a
“moderate” or a “centrist.” He's just a warmonger with authoritarian
impulses and liberal positions on social issues. 
[emphasis mine]

Oh, how I love that last quote and which it were my own.  I do think I may have to borrow it in conversation.  And actually, this topic more than deserves a post of its own (another time?).  You want to be a moderate in the media's eyes?  Simply take a position contrary to your party on abortion and/or gay marriage and you are a “moderate.”  Voila!

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