Hello Kossacks. In case some of you haven't seen this, I thought I would post a recap of today's editorial in The Cap Times, in furtherance of our discussion about the smelly situation in Waukesha County. I looked for another diary on this and haven't seen one, but please forgive if it has already been diaried.
I was interested to find out what Tammy Baldwin had said in her letter to Attorney General Holder, and The Cap Times editorial has excerpts:
“For our democracy to endure, we, the people, must have faith in its laws and system of justice, including faith that our elections for public office are fair and free from any manipulation or tampering,” Baldwin wrote to Holder. “Following this week’s election for the Wisconsin Supreme Court, numerous constituents have contacted me expressing serious doubt that this election was a free and fair one. They fear, as I do, that political interests are manipulating the results.”
It is heartening to know that
Baldwin is not exaggerating when she refers to “numerous constituents … expressing serious doubt that this election was a free and fair one.”
(Indeed. Although the editorial does not mention the campaign from One Wisconsin Now, its website says that over 10,000 people have signed its petition to Wisconsin State Attorney General Van Hollen to investigate the Waukesha vote. FlotsamInaWebSea mentioned this in a diary yesterday: Another Scott Walker Pawn: Where is AG Van Hollen's Outrage About Election Integrity Now?
The Cap Times fully supports Ms. Baldwin's efforts:
In such a contested circumstance, it makes total sense to seek the intervention of federal authorities, who frequently step in when there are questions about whether an election was conducted properly.
The editorial also compliments the way Ms. Baldwin expressed her concern:
Baldwin’s tone throughout her letter is measured and responsible. She relies on the facts. And the facts point to the conclusion that outside intervention is warranted.
In her letter, Ms. Baldwin urges the Department of Justice to take action:
I ask for your immediate assistance in investigating these election inconsistencies in Wisconsin. Specifically, I urge you to immediately assign the Justice Department Public Integrity Section, which oversees the federal prosecution of election crimes, to investigate the questionable handling of vote records in Waukesha County, Wisconsin.
And The Cap Times agrees:
Holder should make that assignment. The lawyers from the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section can work with Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board to ensure that the ballots from Waukesha — and any other contested counties — are properly preserved and reviewed. They can, as well, examine computers used by Nickolaus and other Waukesha County officials, just as they can review communications between the clerk and outside actors who may have had an interest in the race.
The editorial concludes with:
“We, the people,” [Baldwin] says, “must be assured that our votes are fairly counted and reported and our democracy remains intact and untainted.”
Action by the U.S. Justice Department, in combination with the GAB and responsible county and local election officials across the state, can begin to provide that assurance. As such, it is absolutely necessary.
Since this is basically a recap, you may want to read the entire editorial here. (U notice I haz new diary skillz?)
I realize that what went down in Waukesha seems like a fait accompli, but I have hope that Ms. Baldwin's letter will move Attorney General Holder to take action. Perhaps we can bolster support by appealing to other organizations who have the power of the people behind them. Yesterday I wrote to Color of Change, asking them to start a campaign to urge a federal investigation into the suspicious handling of vote records in Waukesha County. They have a pretty good track record as of late, with the success of their campaigns to get Glenn Beck off the air and Brietbart off the front page of a certain controversial website. They are currently taking on a local issue in a town in Louisiana on behalf of its Mayor Higginbotham, so why not the Waukesha County situation? Perhaps if other people wrote to them too, they might be persuaded to take up the charge.
Oh, I'm sure some folks think nothing will happen, that it's a done deal. Well, I'd like to conclude my second diary by linking a wonderful diary I read yesterday by Clarknt67. It is on a completely different subject; it's an affirmation that even the most conservative religious activist can have a complete and total change of heart, and it is an inspirational story that proves you can effect change by pushing back and speaking up.
[UPDATE: When I wrote my diary this morning, I was not aware that John Nichols, an associate editor of The Cap Times, had first posted this opinion on his blog at The Nation a couple of days ago. I came across his blog this afternoon while looking for more information about the situation.]