While we’re working to win the election, we should also takes steps to make it more likely that we’ll have one. There have been lots of trial balloons put up about cancelling an election in the event of terrorism, and lots of suggestions that al Qaeda plans to disrupt the election, and suggestions that al Qaeda wants Kerry to win. Furthermore, even without al Qaeda, the Diebold mess is a disaster waiting to happen, as is the wrongful disenfranchisement of supposed felons in Florida and probably elsewhere.
Democrats should put the Republicans and the media on notice that this time around we will fight just as hard as the Republicans do. We should assemble squads of staffers to go to problem areas to agitate if necessary — just as the Republicans did in Florida last time. Everyone should know that we will not accept an unfair count this year, and that we are prepared to respond if we don’t get one.
This has to go beyond one funky little website. The idea has to circulate widely, and ultimately elected officials and Party leaders will have to be involved. If we allow the election to be stolen again, it will be.
(Be sure to also read Dave Johnson’s post immediately below this one: “White House Won’t Guarantee Elections in November.”
“It was crazy to go ahead with an election a mere three days after the Madrid massacre….. But I do know that reversing course in the wake of a terrorist attack is inexcusable.”
(David Brooks, March 16, 2004)
“The government needs to establish guidelines for canceling or rescheduling elections if terrorists strike the United States again, says the chairman of a new federal voting commission. Such guidelines do not currently exist, said DeForest B. Soaries, head of the voting panel.”
(AP, June 25, 2004)
“A steady stream of intelligence, including nuggets from militant-linked Web sites, indicates al-Qaida wants to attack the United States to disrupt the upcoming elections, federal officials said Thursday.”
(AP, July 9, 2004)
“Osama bin Laden could have made a good living as a political consultant if he did not choose to kill babies instead. The al Qaeda/Ba’ath Party strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan is, at core, a political one. They seek not just to pull Iraq into chaos, but to defeat President Bush as well.”
(“Terrorists for Kerry”, Dick Morris, NY Post, June 5, 2004)
“‘While a political resolution to the election might not be quick and might be a brawl, Souter argued that the nation would still accept it,’ Kaplan wrote. Souter tried desperately to get Kennedy to vote with the minority, according to the book, but he wouldn’t flip. ‘He thought the trauma of more recounts, more fighting — more politics — was too much for the country to endure,’ Kaplan wrote.” (Kennedy had been intimidated specifically by the “Brooks Brothers Riot” of paid Republican staffers which ended the recount in Miami-Dade County; that was the only actual violence that there had been, though a number of Republicans had stated their unwillingness to accept a result which made would put Gore in the Presidency).
(Story: AP/CBS, Sept 10, 2001)
“Not only is the country’s leading touch-screen voting system so badly designed that votes can be easily changed, but its manufacturer is run by a die-hard GOP donor who vowed to deliver his state for Bush next year.”
(Salon, Sept. 23, 2003)