Here is a scenario to ponder in this general election season: Suppose it is about five weeks before the presidential voting, and the news breaks that the Democratic Party hired an organization to register voters in Florida and other swing states.
Nothing out of the ordinary so far, right? But then it is discovered that this organization is the successor to another which had such a controversial past that it changed its name to obscure that past.
Then comes still more news – that some elections supervisors in Florida start to question several voter registration forms that operatives of this organization filled out on behalf of the Democratic Party. In fact, concern starts to mount that many of these forms were bogus or fraudulent and prosecution is very likely.
The Democratic Party dumps the company, utters the usual mea culpa and, in a show of civic pride, files an election fraud complaint against the company it had hired.
And all ends well, right? Not.
If that scenario had been played out, the Democratic Party would have been skewered to the point that President Barack Obama’s re-election hopes would probably have been dashed.
Because, isn’t that what the Republican Party across several states has been giving as the reason for unconscionable new voter identification laws in states where the GOP controls the government? That Democrats instigate voter fraud, even though there is no evidence of any such fraud?
But the scenario described above is real, except with different players. The Republican Party of Florida paid a company called Strategic Allied Consulting more than $1.3 million to conduct the voter registration drive in the state.
The Republican National Committee paid the company to register voters also in Nevada, North Carolina and Virginia.
It is an astounding development. This is the party that has been flexing its muscle in all legislatures it controls to make it as difficult as possible for elderly, minority and poor voters – mainly Democrats – to be able to cast ballots, ostensibly in the name of electoral integrity, and now being caught committing what looks like voter registration fraud.
That is not the only astounding aspect of this sorry affair.
There is no major outcry, such as the one that accompanied the charge that led to the demise of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). The Republicans in Congress led the charge against ACORN, thought to be a Democratic-leaning organization.
But there is no such outcry in Congress against this Strategic Allied Consulting outfit and its paymasters, the GOP. Surprisingly, even the Democrats in Congress have not yet raised their voices in protest at this blatant effort to suborn the electoral process in states where the voting outcome could determine who will be our next president.