Tuesday, September 23, 2008

McCain Sends Out Fake Absentee Ballots

The McCain campaign and the Republican Party continue to prove they are not interested in doing what is best for the country. Instead they are increasing their tactics to actually try and prevent American citizens from voting this November.

The latest illegal, and let me emphasis that, illegal tactic, is mailing out applications for absentee ballots to registered Democrat voters at least 10 states. The ballots the McCain campaign are mailing out in every state contain at least one error meant to disqualify the voter when the application is submitted. The McCain camp say they have sent out over 1 million applications in Ohio alone. The front side of the ballot is pictured to the right.

Some of the errors on the application include providing the wrong return address, sending the form to a district the voter is not allowed to vote in. In Wisconsin (and likely every state ) that will get your ballot disqualified.

IOWA residents are being asked to provide their OHIO drivers license number on the absentee ballots sent out by McCain.

The Ohio Secretary of State has ordered that the McCain-provided applications be destroyed if the voter has not checked a box stating that they are qualified to vote. Critics say the McCain campaign added the additional check box and placed it in a separate area from the rest of the application to intentionally disqualify voters.

To make matters more confusing, in an attempt to appear to be guilt-free, the McCain campaign is suing the Secretary of State of Ohio over her ruling.

But others aren't buying McCain's sudden defense of democracy.

Alex Goepfert, a spokesman for the Ohio Democratic Party called it “a partisan lawsuit coordinated by the chairman of the McCain campaign and intended to inject confusion and disorder into the voting process as we approach a critical election."

“Republicans have absolutely zero credibility in challenging a law that they themselves wrote, passed and signed into effect,” Goepfert said.

Beverly Jambois, a Wisconsin woman who received the unsolicited application from the McCain campaign, was furious. "They're trying to knock me off the rolls," Jambois told the Madison Times. "I can't tell you how upsetting it is to me. This is how (McCain tries to) win elections? By disenfranchising voters?"

The Madison Times warned it's readers: "following the instructions of the McCain mailing could lead voters to run afoul of election rules and regulations -- and that might lead to the disqualification or even the prosecution of an innocent citizen for supposed wrongdoing."

Voters in the following states should be on the lookout for the phony ballots sent by McCain: Florida, Iowa, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Minnesota, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The phony ballots could show up anywhere, so please let your friends and family, especially older members, know to throw the ballots in the garbage.

If you or anyone you know is interested in voting via an absentee ballot, call your local county board of elections. They will tell you how to vote absentee and actually have your vote counted.

To find the phone number or website to your local elections board, just click on this Google search link and fill in the name of the county you are registered to vote in, I've already done the rest for you.

Nothing in politics makes me more angry than trying to prevent someone from exercising their Constitutionally protected right to vote. If the Democrats were doing it, I would be just as angry. There is no legitimate reason for this. It's simply meant to disqualify as many Democratic voters as possible. It is just like the McCain campaign's attempts in many states to disqualify mostly African American homeowners from voting by using home foreclosure lists to challenge their right to vote. (That tactic brought a lawsuit from the Obama campaign last week and a condemnation by one of Obama's lawyers, who said, "It is an absolute attack on their right to vote” and a "completely false and completely illegal basis" to challenge votes - see the Time Magazine coverage here, and the Newsweek coverage here)

McCain's tactics are illegal, as are any behavior by anyone who intentionally attempts to prevent another person from voting. These aren't just petty crimes, they are felonies. Everyone who had their hand in this should go to prison, and if it can be proved that John McCain and his campaign managers were aware of this, they too, should be convicted and sent to prison.

In a few weeks one of the presidential debates will be a town hall style debate. The questions for the entire evening will come from the citizens in the audience. I would love to see someone ask John McCain how taking away the right to vote from millions of Americans is good for the country.

This is just another glimpse into the mindset of John McCain and what kind of president he would be. If McCain doesn't care about our Constitutionally protected right to vote, he's not going to care about any of the other fundamental principles of democracy.


Amy B. said...

Until 2004, my grandmother, 86 years old, was registered to vote in Curry County, NM. When my parents moved her to Louisville in 2004, she registered to vote in Jefferson County, KY. She has not voted in KY, but is definitely registered there. Last week, she received a letter from the McCain campaign at her address in KY, on campaign stationery, reminding her to vote and enclosing an absentee ballot for Curry County, NM. Apparently, my mother (who was really not thinking) threw the letter and ballot away. It seems to me that this could be construed as voter fraud, since clearly they know she is a legal resident of KY. Is it possible the McCain campaign is targeting old people (who are easily confused) who have been previously registered to vote in a swing state? God only knows what my grandmother would have done with the ballot if my mom hadn't taken it away from her. I'm sure this is happening to other people. I told my mother to send copies of that letter to everyone she could think of if Grandma gets another one, including her friend at church who is a bigwig in the local media, as well as the Obama campaign and her Congressman.