Know When To Hold ‘Em

Minnesota is plagued with voter fraud.  The evidence – both empirical (200 convictions in Ramsey County – the only county that the Minnesota Majority was able to browbeat into taking actual evidence seriously) and anecdotal (yet again, the stories from the U of M and many precincts in the Fourth and Fifth CDs demand an investigation that will never come) is everywhere.

Most Minnesotans that pay attention and aren’t bobbleheaded Fraud Denialists – the people who’ve grown adept at plugging their ears and chanting “nya nya nya best system in the country la la la” – know this.

So why did the Voter ID Amendment fail?

Not because it wasn’t needed, or because a majority of Minnesotans who actually pay attention voted “no”.

Dan McGrath – who led the effort from the beginning – has a long, detailed take that oozes the exhaustion and disappointment he no doubt feels, over at True North.   Go read the whole thing; it’ll be easier than copying and pasting the whole thing here.

A few takeaways, both McGrath’s and mine.

  • The anti-Amendment crowd outspent the proponents by a daunting margin.  Which is odd, considering that in every poll up to the very end, the measure was passing by a bare minimum of 3:2.  Now, polls are obviously a mess, in this state more than most.  But what could possibly cause a movement to spend that much money to thwart a measure so overwhelmingly supported by so many people, even – initially – DFL-identified voters?   Pure, simple love of the status quo?
  • The pro-Amendment forces were not only too small and too underfunded – they were fatally fractured, to the point that some pro-Amendment groups actually fought each other.  Precious time and money was wasted.  There was too little of both under even the right circumstances.
  • The movement started out with massive bipartisan support – and then turned the issue into a partisan one.  That might have worked in a year when the conservative/GOP brand was a big winner.  It was clearly not, this year – but the lesson remains; it was a huge mistake to make it a GOP vs. DFL issue; that did the DFL’s framing for them.  This should have been a “Justice versus Fraud” issue, repeated relentlessly and at every opportunity.
  • That failure made it easy for the DFL to tie it to the Marriage Amendment, and kill them both with their “Vote No Twice” campaign; it was elegant, and simple enough to drive into the heads of all the low-information voters that dominated this past election.

My prediction:  The DFL is going to build “safeguards” to fraud into the system in the next two years that it’d take a decade of conservative rule to untangle.  Look for voters to not be required to give names at the polls by 2014; by 2016, people will be picking up ballots at WalMart.  By 2018, they’ll come pre-filled from the DFL.

Facetious?  We’ll see.

9 thoughts on “Know When To Hold ‘Em

  1. 2014: I fully agree
    2016: Maybe not Walmart, but definitely MNVotes.gov (or something similar, but *run by the government*)
    2018: If it’s that bad, Civil War II is a guarantee.

  2. I worked on Terry Jacobson’s campaign and after analyzing our polling before and after the election, I can state emphatically that voter fraud occurred. On Friday before the election, Terry was polling plus 7, yet she lost by 3. Keith Downey’s team saw similar results. We have pretty much identified where the fraud most likely occurred – in large apartment complexes in the districts. Unfortunately for all Minnesotans, Keith Downey will end his family legacy of excellent public service, as he is done with politics and will not run again. Now, the “cake eaters” in Edina will experience the big government that they voted for when air traffic gets routed over their hypocritical little town!

  3. I’d still love to see a James O’Keefe style undercover video showing how easy it is in MN to commit voter fraud. Of course the irony is that if someone actually did it, county prosecutors would be falling all over themselves to prosecute THAT voter fraud.

  4. Perhaps this is idealistic, but the voter ID amendment should have nothing to do with politics or political strategy. It is simple enough on its face that it did not need to be sold, promoted, or explained. Even the homosexual marriage amendment had valid points that could be argued, or that could lead a reasonably intelligent person to take an opposing (was that “yes” or “no”?) position.

    Offering identification to participate in an important process requires no moral, ethical, or logical debate. The premise is very simple. People are committing fraud.

    Even if you don’t believe that, the technology and circumstances that would facilitate it exist and continue to spread (illegal immigration, technological advances, political benefit). The fact that it passed is a very scary and sad comment on my fellow Minnesotans and causes me to question what I used to call logic.

    In a way, I’m hoping I’ll soon see the reasoning of the majority who felt that voter ID was not necessary. I’d rather see myself as wrong than as living among people I upon who I cannot rely to act reasonably or logically.

    So, no. Political strategy and low-information voters are not issues with voter ID. Something unexplainable happened. I’m still praying to hear my alarm clock at 6AM on 11/07/12. It worked for Dorothy …

  5. So, no. Political strategy and low-information voters are not issues with voter ID. Something unexplainable happened.

    This wasn’t a battle the DFL could lose, so they turned out everyone they could and voted as many times as they could get by with. The ad with Dayton and Arne Carlson was especially disgraceful, too — you had the sitting governor and a former governor appearing on television lying through their teeth and (as Dan McGrath has explained elsewhere) there was no response to it.

    The only solace is that now the DFL owns the results of what happens in this state for the next two years. And it won’t go well for them. You could see a 1978 scenario develop here in 2014, especially if Obama appoints AKlo to replace Holder as Attorney General.

  6. I’m surprised DG hasn’t popped in yet to “factually” refute the idea that even one single vote was fraudulently cast in the entire state of MN. It is her cause célèbre.

  7. I was almost certain “voter fraud” and “liberal media” would top the list of GOP excuses. Although using unions and deceptive political advertising probably makes it a wash.

    Where did the party of personal responsibility go?

  8. I would also like to add, that when your opponent is shocked that you won, that should say something right there. We heard that from the Rosenthal camp.

  9. If Minnesotans in general and Republicans in particular were more willing to extend freedom of choice to marriage issues as they are to fiscal issues, then I predict they would have had a far better chance of getting the voter ID amendment passed. Many small government, fiscal conservatives (including THIS one) are not willing to deprive our gay neighbors and relatives the opportunity to forge a legal and lasting relationship with the person they love.

    As a result, many voters were motivated to come out and vote against the sad amendment to enshrine a lack of choice in our constitution. I agree with those above who said that it was easy to tie the amendments together – even though in reality they had nothing to do with one another.

    Perhaps if we had only one amendment – the “aye’s” would have had it….

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