If you haven’t been following the news lately, the big brouhaha in my neck of the woods was that the Pennsylvania Assembly pushed through a law requiring picture ID cards in order to vote, ostensibly to cut down on voter fraud. Yesterday, a Commonwealth Court Judge declared that the law was enacted too close to the 2012 election and could disenfranchise voters; in lieu of striking down the law, he simply ruled that it should not go into effect until the 2012 election.
But that’s not what’s bullshit here.
What’s bullshit here is the fact that not twenty minutes after I read the news story yesterday about the postponement of the new Pennsylvania voter ID law – a story that had broken several hours before I actually read it – I saw a commercial on television announcing that anyone who wants to vote in Pennsylvania next month needs to show valid picture ID. For some reason this made me almost irrationally angry, almost as if the Powers That Be that were behind the law were saying, “You know what? Fuck it. If we don’t acknowledge it, it won’t exist.”
I can understand the impetus behind such a law. Voter fraud can be a big problem, especially in a swing state like Pennsylvania. On the other hand, voter fraud is practically fucking nonexistent. In fact, the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law says that you’re more likely to get struck by lightning than there is to be an instance of voter fraud in any given election.
Let me reiterate this point. You will be struck by lightning before you hear about an instance of voter fraud.
Listen, I don’t care who you’re voting for this election. Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, Gary Johnson, Pee Wee Herman – hell I don’t care if you vote in the Green Lantern (unless if it’s Guy Gardner. No way I’m standing for a bowl haircut as President of the United States). What I do care about is whether or not you try to cook up cockamamie stories in order to ramrod a voter ID law through, just in time to make it difficult for a bunch of people to vote in a swing state. It’s the kind of bullshit that needs to be descended upon with a chapter of angry, chainsword-swinging Space Marines and stamped out as Heresy of the highest magnitude (right above Chaos worship and fully-grown adults without children watching My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic).
That, my friends, is bullshit of the highest caliber.