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Critics think the new bipartisan voting commission won't do much
to make it easier for Americans like 102-year-old Desiline Victor to cast ballots.

Desiline Victor, the 102-year-old Haitian immigrant who waited three hours to vote last fall and still had to come back later to cast her ballot, got a standing ovation when her presence was pointed out by President Obama in his State of the Union address Tuesday night. She tried but couldn't stand. As one wag put it, however, she was more active than House Speaker John Boehner. He didn't stand to honor her.

The president's proposal of a bipartisan commission for ending the long lines she endured, as well as fixing other voting obstacles, isn't getting a standing ovation. One critic is the League of Women Voters. While praising many elements of Obama's speech, the league stated on its website:

“With these positive elements, we were thus surprised and disappointed that the President did not suggest bold action to ensure that every American citizen can exercise the right to vote. Setting up a commission is not a bold step; it is business as usual. The President could have done much better by pointing to real solutions like that in legislation already introduced on Capitol Hill to require early voting, set limits on waiting times, provide for portable voter registration and set up secure online voter registration.”

That was a mild critique compared with what Charles P. Pierce had to say about one of the two co-commissioners Obama has chosen to head the commission:

A bipartisan commission is the Washington policy equivalent of a sock drawer. Worse, the Republican co-chairman is Benjamin Ginsberg, who is nothing less than a high-class ratfcker. He was one of the elves who sought to delegitimize Bill Clinton. He was central to the legal shenanigans surrounding the Florida Heist of 2000. He was connected to the Swift Boat attacks on John Kerry. And his committment to opposing the modern techniques of voter-suppression—particularly voter ID laws—is less than stout.
At The Nation, Ari Berman, who has covered voter suppression of various kinds since 2011, also objected to what a poor choice Ginsberg is:
“Just like really with the Voting Rights Act, Republicans have some fundamental philosophical difficulties with the whole notion of Equal Protection.” And in 2012, he was counsel to the Romney campaign when it absurdly claimed that the Obama campaign was trying to suppress military voters by pushing for early voting for all Ohioans. Does that sound like the kind of guy you want leading a “non-partisan” voting commission?
The Brennan Center for Justice, which has done yeoman's work in the fight against voter suppression, had a more favorable point of view. The commission "is an important step, focusing on improving the experience of voters. This should be a critical part of the larger mission of modernizing elections so every eligible citizen can vote and have that vote counted."

While the Brennan Center has some good ideas of its own for modernizing the vote, it is, as Berman says, hard to see exactly what the administration can accomplish in the realm of election reform without a willing Congress. He reminds us that Congress has hamstrung the Election Assistance Commission established in 2000. It hasn't met since 2011 and has no commissioners, no executive director, no general counsel. Republicans have worked to make sure it stays that way until they can abolish it altogether.

While the new commission is not likely to produce much if anything more than the old one, the very least the president could do, as Berman suggests, is to get Ben Ginsberg to publicly sign a pledge that he will work to make sure every American eligible to vote actually gets an opportunity to do that. That would be a big switch from his long-term efforts directed at finding every obstruction he can think of to keep people—certain people, that is—from exercising, in President Obama's words, "our most fundamental right as citizens."

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 02:29 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Sounds like the "re-review" of just-concluded... (14+ / 0-)

    ...Independent Foreclosure Review.

    See these two pieces, from the NY Times and Yves Smith (both from today), respectively (note the NYT's headline...pretty amazing, really): "Big Banks Are Told to Review Their Own Foreclosures," and "OCC Compounds Botched Foreclosure Review Process with Barmy Plan for Distributing Peanuts."

    Same logic used by whomever decided who the folks were that are going to be the co-chairs of the bipartisan voting commission!

    Does everything in D.C. work this way these days?

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 02:38:04 PM PST

  •  how depressing. and, unfortunately, not (14+ / 0-)

    surprising, either.

    fixing the mess the r's have created to keep people from exercising their right to vote is low-hanging fruit for the d's & would all but guarantee a takeover of the house in 2014 & another d in the wh in 2016 -- but, as usual, we have appoint someone like ginsberg to co-chair the commitee, just to make sure it fails to accomplish anything positive. (groan)

    •  It's less a case of a party self-sabotaging than (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MikePhoenix

      of a party that does not represent the economic interests of either the majority or its traditional base.

      The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

      by Wolf10 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:13:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The position (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Citizenpower, bluezen

      of the president on the serious issue of voting fraud is unacceptable. The "independent Commission" is so bogus.
      After introducing a wonderful woman and patriot such as Desiline Victor, who waited on line forever, because the republicans just to tried to keep her from voting. !02 years young!. Politics as usual is not o.k. Mr. Obama. It is the same logic that has kept you from arresting the criminal banksters and makes you want to cut benefits for the elderly. Many of the bankers are drug launderers sir. sigh...

      "America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between" Oscar Wilde

      by angry hopeful liberal on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:23:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  couldn't agree more. reforming voter suppression (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        angry hopeful liberal

        -- & removing the raft of ridiculous impediments to voting in this country (supposedly, the world's greatest democracy) -- is simple, & more importantly, exactly what what we the people want.

        all we have to do is adopt the best practices of other democracies, like canada, which has an INDEPENDENT agency that oversees its elections, registration, & everything else having to do with the voting process.

        a bi-partisan commission is doomed to failure from the get-go, precisely b/c it's bi-partisan!

  •  jesus h. christ, john boehner is such a (4+ / 0-)

    pathetic excuse for a human being.

    he couldn't stand???????????

  •  HURRAY! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Helpless, Wolf10

    If I live to be 100, I will never forget sweet Desiline.
    That instead we have all this discussion about Rubio & his stealing the scene routine that I'm not buying one bit!
    Horns, Pope Poland and that tongues...
    HURRAY SWEET DESILINE.
    SWEET! SWEET! SWEET! etc.
    I hope everybody on all blogs cheer
    HURRAY SWEET DESILINE.
    SWEET! SWEET! SWEET!...

  •  It will give us more ammo in the next election to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joe from Lowell, TRPChicago

    point out how un democratic the republicans are and how afraid of voters they are.

    Our money system is not what we have been led to believe. The creation of money has been "privatized," or taken over by private money lenders. Thomas Jefferson called them “bold and bankrupt adventurers just pretending to have money.” webofdebt

    by arealniceguy on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 05:45:26 PM PST

  •  Ginsberg, really? (7+ / 0-)

    THIS guy (The Nation):

    For over two decades, Ginsberg has been a top lawyer for the Republican Party—the same party, you may recall, that has led the effort to restrict voting rights of late. Ginsberg helped lead the 2000 recount effort for George W. Bush. He was forced to resign from the Bush campaign in 2004 after it was revealed that he was also advising the vile Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. In 2006, Ginsberg said, “Just like really with the Voting Rights Act, Republicans have some fundamental philosophical difficulties with the whole notion of Equal Protection.” And in 2012, he was counsel to the Romney campaign when it absurdly claimed that the Obama campaign was trying to suppress military voters by pushing for early voting for all Ohioans.
  •  I'm not counting on voting getting easier... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wolf10, irmaly, MikePhoenix, davidkc

    ...in any foreseeable election cycle. The Financial Elites who consistently fund voting suppression are going to continue to even if it proves to be a "poor return on investment" because (a) it's essentially couch cushion money to them and (b) they feel entitled to suppress the votes of us lesser mortals.

    When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 05:51:30 PM PST

  •  I Expect Him to Champion the Cause of Stricter (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Egalitare, Wolf10, davidkc

    voter ID laws. These goons aren't shy.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 05:51:51 PM PST

  •  Ben Ginsburg???!!!! What the fuck is wrong with (9+ / 0-)

    Obama?  This clearly shows Obama is simply doing this for show and is not serious about voting rights.  That is as close to appointing the devil as you can get.   Cheney is probably on Obama's short list for something.  I am literally sick to my stomach.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 05:53:18 PM PST

    •  Is Ginsberg worse than Ted Olson? (0+ / 0-)

      Do you also think David Boise shouldn't have worked with Olson to overturn Prop 8?

      •  Ginsburg is the bottom feeder slime ball of all (5+ / 0-)

        time.  Olson is, I believe, principled and intellectually honest.  Ginsburg is a political hack, Olson is a real lawyer.  It is beyond comprehension that Obama would appoint Ginsburg.  After this, anyone - ANYONE - Obama appoints is diminished.  This lowers the bar below sea level.

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:15:53 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Principled and intellectually honest (0+ / 0-)

          to argue that counting votes for Gore violated Bush's equal protection rights?

          Oh, puleeeeeze.

          •  He was representing a client - making a case. (0+ / 0-)

            He was being a lawyer.  Ginsburg has been a mouthpiece for the scum in the media and an operator/fundraiser for that crowd.  In contrast to Olson, I cannot imagine Ginsburg fighting for equal rights or anything decent.  

            The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

            by accumbens on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:48:50 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  At this point, Obama (6+ / 0-)

      is just playing us for laughs.

      No matter.  A decade hence he'll be a very rich man, and voting, for him, will be inconsequential.

      Be of good comfort, Master Ridley, and play the man; we shall this day light such a candle by God's grace in England as shall never be put out.

      by Bollox Ref on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:05:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  "WTF is wrong with Obama?" You mean besides (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      accumbens

      being to the right of Nixon?

      The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

      by Wolf10 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:08:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Then how do you explain the Holder DOJ? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tom Anderson

      The Department of Justice has been fantastic on defending voting rights since Holder was appointed.  It's tough to reconcile the demonstrable record of this administration with your claim that Obama "is not serious about voting rights."

      Has Holder gone rogue?

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:21:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  What I'm saying is this commission is of little (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MikePhoenix

        real interest to Obama.  If he were serious about it, there is no way he would appoint a hack like Ginsburg.  This is a bone, publicly tossed to the base with theater using a 102 year old woman as a prop.  The choice diminishes rather than elevates.  It's pathetic.

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:37:52 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  You know, Richard Daley has a bad role in that (0+ / 0-)

      story as well, though nowhere near as bad as Ginsburg's.

      Obama is hanging out with the wrong people. Of course, on the up side, Daley is gone now. On the down side, Ginsburg is front and center...

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Feb 14, 2013 at 09:20:40 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Commission obviously won't solve the problem, but (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joe from Lowell, Possiamo

    it could do good if it investigates the suppression efforts in various states and calls them out, obviously we need more but i'm not going to slam the commission before it ever even meets.

    •  Maybe the CIA turned him (Ginsberg) (0+ / 0-)

      with some enhanced interrogation.  Except those spook types are probably mostly Republican.

      Even Democrats can be asses. Look at Rahm Emanuel.

      by Helpless on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:10:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Would be the Justice Dept/FBI (0+ / 0-)

        and I wish they had turned him (though not with enhanced interrogation). Wish I could think so. Actually, that's the most optimistic thing I've heard so far. I feel a bit better now. If they had turned him, who better to head the commission than someone who knew all the ins and outs of the original conspiracy to essentially appoint George W. Bush to the Presidency?

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Feb 14, 2013 at 09:25:57 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I don't think Ginsberg is likely to investigate... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WheninRome

      ...what he himself has been engaged in.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:38:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kind of like (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wolf10

    hiring an ex-con bne guy to do home security checks.  Is he making you more secure or casing your home at your request?  What could go wrong?

  •  I don't see what can possibly be gained (6+ / 0-)

    by asking a person who actively supports greater restrictions on voting to be on a panel concerned with widening access to voting. It's like asking Gov. Wallace to chair the NAACP. Of course, Gov. Wallace changed his tune. So I suppose there is some slim hope for humanity.

    Voter suppression has traditionally been the technique of bigots and racists. Asking bigots and racists to help reform themselves is like asking...well, you get the picture.

    Note to the voter suppression proponents: there are more than two amendments to the Constitution, folks.

    What is truth? -- Pontius Pilate

    by commonmass on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:00:24 PM PST

  •  Obama is more interested in process than (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wolf10, Not A Bot, MikePhoenix, davidkc

    results.  It sounds bipartisan and conciliatory.  That's good enough.  

    Oregon: Sure...it's cold. But it's a damp cold.

    by Keith930 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:01:33 PM PST

    •  Not exactly (5+ / 0-)

      He's more interested in the OPTICS of process than in process OR results. He wants to be seen as progressive advocate for the people, as opposed to actually being one. He's given a bunch of impressive progressive speeches over the past year--Osawatomie, convention, inaugural, SOTO. But until he actually backs it up with effective action, it's just words, pretty, pretty words.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:20:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  He's governing as you would expect (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kovie

        a perfesser to do.  He enjoys studying things rather than doing things, and he dislikes splashing water on others, and he wants other people to like him; hence all the GOP nominees.  The result is, with the exception of healthcare, which was more Congress than it was White House anyway, Obama is proving to be G-d's gift to the center right.

        The wisdom of my forebears ... Two wise people will never agree. Man begins in dust and ends in dust — meanwhile it's good to drink some vodka. A man studies until he's seventy and dies a fool.

        by Not A Bot on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:49:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Another Wilson, then? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Not A Bot

          High-minded but practically less effective? Perhaps, but my understanding is that Wilson really wanted progressive reform but wasn't a good enough politician to make it happen the way he wanted, whereas Obama strikes me as wanting to seem to want progressive reform but not actually wanting it, and certainly not wanting to do what it would take to make it happen. Perhaps the first truly modern president in this era of hype over substance.

          Btw, you're violating the kos rule. :-)

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:07:00 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Uh-oh (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kovie

            Which rule did I break THIS time?  I'm always in trouble.

            The wisdom of my forebears ... Two wise people will never agree. Man begins in dust and ends in dust — meanwhile it's good to drink some vodka. A man studies until he's seventy and dies a fool.

            by Not A Bot on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:11:41 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No double spaces (0+ / 0-)

              kos wrote a much-commented on diary about it the other day. Doesn't matter to me, though, at least in this informal setting.

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:17:15 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Duh. I forgot. Already responded to him here ... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                kovie

                http://www.dailykos.com/...

                Kovie, I look at it this way.  I'm a fairly conservative old fart, and I spend my time here mostly looking for points of agreement rather than points of contest -- a small mitzvah in this contentious society we call home -- a behavior that would probably do us all good, if more commonly practiced by both sides.

                So, if I'm willing to be a good old geezer and get along, Kos can at least give me my darned double space in return.  Besides, I doubt that Edison's medicine would be enough to remove the habit.  It's hardwired deep in the ROM.

                 

                The wisdom of my forebears ... Two wise people will never agree. Man begins in dust and ends in dust — meanwhile it's good to drink some vodka. A man studies until he's seventy and dies a fool.

                by Not A Bot on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:33:06 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  Obama ducks, swerves right. I'm shocked! eom (0+ / 0-)

    The frog jumped/ into the old pond/ plop! (Basho)

    by Wolf10 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:02:27 PM PST

  •  It's my sadly under-informed opinion that one of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    penguins4peace

    the issues that might be canvassed is the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendent.  I think Ginsberg has a partcular expertise in how the reasoning in Bush v. Gore could be applied to good advantage in other circumstances.  :)

    We must, indeed, all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. B. Franklin

    by Observerinvancouver on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:03:58 PM PST

  •  Ah, but our Scholar-President only picks EXPERTS, (5+ / 0-)

    like Timmy Geithner, and all those other people who understand Funny Munny and the art of Megacounterfeiting, and Petraeus and Panetta and so many others. EXPERTS, anyway, at doing WHAT to the rest of us again?

    How about that neat slip of the dagger labeled "Chained CPI" between the fifth and sixth dorsal ribs? THERE was an expert move, hidden by that magician's legerdemain of "no increase in retirement age under Social Security"?

    C'mon, time for the apologists for the Hero of Liberalism to step forward and tell us not to worry, grown.ups.are.in.charge,gov, there's really a Secret Plan that's just not apparent yet, and anyway there's always the next election cycle, right?

    "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

    by jm214 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:07:45 PM PST

    •  There ya go ... clouds lift (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wolf10, jm214, WheninRome

      and it starts raining.  Or are those tears?

      I think he enjoys radical/controversial moves to show how smart he is.  Certainly no one, neither Republicans nor Democrats, thought he would appoint Ginsberg.

      Unfortunately, like appointing Geithner, it appears to be a very dumb move.  And in Geithner's case, time has proven us right.

      Even Democrats can be asses. Look at Rahm Emanuel.

      by Helpless on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:18:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm not a fan of commissions (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joe from Lowell

    especially when it comes to voting rights.  To quote Fats Waller:  "One never knows, do one?"

    Who would have guessed Ted Olson of Bush v. Gore days would be a bold champion of LGBT rights along side his former opposing counsel, David Boies.

    I'll wait to see what happens in the near future but my instinct is that the DOJ Civil Rights Division should be front and center on this issue.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:12:24 PM PST

    •  The DOJ has been front and center on voting rights (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gchaucer2, Meteor Blades

      The Holder Justice Department has a very strong record on this issue, and I've seen nothing to suggest that that will change.

      So why this weak-tea Blue Ribbon Panel?  Good Cop-Bad Cop?

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:24:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  America (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joe from Lowell

        Just the President letting everyone know that he takes it seriously.  I don't mind a PR thingy as long as the DOJ is doing its job.  Bush destroyed the Civil Rights Division and it has taken awhile to get it back to credibility -- even though there are probably long timer assholes still there.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:27:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Holder's DOJ has been so aggressive on this front. (0+ / 0-)

    I'm having trouble reconciling that strong record with this weak-tea proposal to create a Blue Ribbon Commission.

    The idea that Obama wants to bury the cause doesn't make sense, because the administration's record to date shows just the opposite.

    Maybe he's trying to turn this into what it should be: a bipartisan issue that both sides can agree on.

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:18:16 PM PST

  •  Obama might as well have appointed (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wolf10, penguins4peace

    Ken Blackwell.  This is just as bad.  It is sickening.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:19:08 PM PST

  •  Gotta be the most passive-aggressive president (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MikePhoenix, Citizenpower

    in a very long time, saying something really impressive, then doing something to undermine it--if he does anything at all. It's like there are two Obamas. One, the fierce progressive speechmaker who promises major change. And two, the CW-spouting centrist appeaser determined to maintain the status quo.

    It's almost like he enjoys it, like he's punking us. President Ashton Obama.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:27:06 PM PST

  •  Btw, is that Mrs. John Roberts (0+ / 0-)

    to her right? Doesn't seem too pleased to be sitted next to The Help.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:28:13 PM PST

  •  Keep your friends close, your enemies closer? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MikePhoenix

    This "reaching across the aisle" shit is overrated.

    "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

    by GrumpyOldGeek on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 06:37:48 PM PST

  •  Hmmm. Let's See. (0+ / 0-)

    To get election reform we need to get rid of the Republicans in Congress. To get rid of the Republicans in Congress, we need election reform.

    Let's start with the media.

  •  This is such BS on Obama's part (0+ / 0-)

    It makes his grand talk about voting rights in his speech seem like so much hot air.

  •  The President seems confused about what he's... (0+ / 0-)

    calling for. Calls it a non-partisan commission in the speech and the white paper. But appointing two partisan lawyers indicates it is, instead, a bipartisan commission. Which is a completely different beast, given that each party has a well-defined role in this game.

    Republicans believe democratic participation is a privilege reserved for those who have the means and desire to exercise the franchise. Which is to say, they don't believe in democracy. So they work their asses off to make voting as hard as possible.

    Democrats, on the other hand, believe so deeply in our democracy that they don't want to raise the fact that its flaws are so widespread as to challenge its legitimacy. Requiring that they only attack the worst abuses as they arise, ignoring the general trend and choosing not to do any groundwork on the issue after November.

    "The Democratic Party is not our friend: it is the only party we can negotiate with."

    by 2020adam on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 08:46:32 PM PST

  •  I've always thought Ginsberg to be a (0+ / 0-)

    miserable nasty little man.

    "Commission" means to me: go away now and just forget about whatever we said previously............

    We could easily have a volunteer commission on the innertoobs. For free. We don't need Barrister Weaselberg.

  •  whats new (0+ / 0-)

    obama puts forth a suggestion that sounds good but is as shallow as a cup of coffee, the election is over america and obama has his and he cares little about ours.

  •  I wish Obama wouldn't do this. (0+ / 0-)

    If you don't want to make real progress or change on an issue, just leave it alone. Leave it alone. Don't talk about it. Don't form a commission about it. Just let it lie. There's plenty of people out here in the world who care enough about voting rights and they can fight the real fight.

    The worst thing he could do is to form a commission that will do nothing, with a severely tarnished man at its head. This Republican's resume is horrific.

    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Feb 14, 2013 at 09:15:49 PM PST

  •  You know, it's our problem (0+ / 0-)

    not his==yeah, I know he made an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, but aside from that, this issue doesn't affect Obama; he's never going to have to face election again.

    We should start our own damned Commission of citizens, including legal and electoral experts and investigative reporters (from our own ranks if necessary) and push forward with this ourselves. Like a parallel or shadow commission. And, in fact, I'd be willing to have it be nonpartisan in the sense that the citizens would be drawn as they are for jury duty.

    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Feb 14, 2013 at 09:36:49 PM PST

  •  Appointing Ginsberg to a voting rights commission (0+ / 0-)

    is like appointing Dracula to be the secure storage custodian at a blood bank.

    This crap has got to stop.

    Eradicate magical thinking

    by Zinman on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:54:28 PM PST

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