Maybe you missed it in all the excitement over Pope Francis visiting the United States, but earlier this week GOP Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee actually said he doesn’t want “stupid people”–and by that he means those who won’t cast their ballots for him–to vote at all.
But this is hardly the first instance of a member of the conservative movement in America has been caught saying that they would rather if some folks didn’t show up on election day. See, big turnout, especially in minority communities, is bad for the Republicans, as they found out in 2008 and 2012 when President Obama won by big margins.
Here’s 5 other times when the right wingers just came right out and admitted they’d prefer it if some of us sat home when the polls are open:
Weyrich, was a political operative and widely considered to be the “founding father of the conservative movement.” He had a hand in helping found the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority, the Council for National Policy, and other influential conservative groups.
In 1980, Weyrich said:
“I don’t want everybody to vote. Elections are not won by a majority of people. They never have been from the beginning of our country, and they are not now. As a matter of fact our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.”
This longtime far right cheerleader was delighted in 2013 when North Carolina passed a series of voter restrictions, including cutting back early voting, which let this shrill ideologue to proclaim:
“The reduction in the number of days allowed for early voting is particularly important because early voting plays a major role in Obama’s ground game. The Democrats carried most states that allow many days of early voting, and Obama’s national field director admitted, shortly before last year’s election, that ‘early voting is giving us a solid lead in the battleground states that will decide this election.’”
Franklin County, Ohio, GOP
Doug Preisse, the chairman of the Franklin County Republican Party (whose area includes the city of Columbus), told a local newspaper:
“I guess I really actually feel we shouldn’t contort the voting process to accommodate the urban — read African-American — voter turnout machine.”
Before the 2012 presidential election, Pennsylvania Republican House Leader Mike Turzai predicted that a new voter identification law would “allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.”
He was, of course, wrong, as President Obama carried the state.
In 2013, Abbott, who was the Texas Attorney General at the time, responded to the Justice Department’s accusation that redistricting had discriminated against minorities by calmly explaining that the goal of the new districts was meant to discriminate against Democrats and that “effects on minority voters” were merely “incidental”:
“DOJ’s accusations of racial discrimination are baseless. In 2011, both houses of the Texas Legislature were controlled by large Republican majorities, and their redistricting decisions were designed to increase the Republican Party’s electoral prospects at the expense of the Democrats. It is perfectly constitutional for a Republican-controlled legislature to make partisan districting decisions, even if there are incidental effects on minority voters who support Democratic candidates.”
So if we left it up to Republicans, the only people who would be allowed to vote are those that are virtually guaranteed to cast their ballots for them. Not very democratic, is it? The far right loves to talk about freedom, as long as that freedom only applies to them.
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org.