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You might remember when Ohio voters went to the polls and rejected Governor John Kasich's SB5, the "bust public unions" bill. You might also remember the e-mail before the special election from Ohio Tea Party Executive, Tom Zawistowski, which unambiguously claimed that if Ohioans did not defeat the recall of SB5, then union monies could still help President Obama and Senator Sherrod Brown get re-elected.
It was an admission that SB5.....from it's inception....was meant as a political sledgehammer to crush union-funding of the Democratic Party as part of Mitch McConnell's number one priority of, "making Obama a one term president." Ohio Republicans insisted that SB5 was all about balancing the state budget. Ending collective bargaining rights for Ohio teachers, we were told, was only an honest attempt to be fiscally responsible stewards of the state's tax dollars. That was a lie. It was all about political warfare....and Zawistowski let the cat out of the bag.
Yesterday, another Republican let another cat out of yet another bag.
Here's Pennsylvania Statehouse Republican Mike Turzai untying the bag and dumping the cat out onto the street....
During a speech to the Republican State Committee's summer meeting in Hershey on Saturday, Rep. Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny, ticked off what he said were the GOP's achievements during its nearly two years in control of the General Assembly and the governor's office.
"Pro-Second Amendment? The Castle Doctrine. It's done," said Turzai, whose remarks were captured on video and posted to the video-sharing site YouTube. "First pro-life legislation — abortion facility regulations — in 22 years. Done. Voter ID, which is going to allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania. Done."
How can state Republicans help fulfill Mitch McConnell's top priority? In Ohio, Wisconsin and Michigan....it was by going after public sector unions under the ruse of balancing state budgets in the hopes of defunding the Democratic Party in those states.
In Pennsylvania, Rep. Mike Turzai bragged about the achievements the GOP-led government had made in the last two years, ticking them off one by one and finishing up with....
"Voter ID, which is going to allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania. Done."
Here I thought voter ID laws were about pre-empting voter fraud.....voter fraud, which has yet to be demonstrated to be a problem worthy of pre-emption.....anywhere. Though voter fraud.....people purposely trying to vote twice or vote under someone else's name or "stuff the ballot box"......actually does not exist as a problem anywhere in the nation, Republican-led states just had to pass ID laws as quickly as possible in order to stop the hordes who were lined up to commit voter fraud.....any day now. In other words.....voter ID, like busting collective bargaining rights of public sector unions, has been deceitfully sold to voters as something other than what it was intended for.
Ask yourself.....how could passing voter ID laws "allow Gov. Romney to win Pennsylvania?" What does one have to do with the other?
The only interpretation which makes any sense in light of Rep. Turzai's claim is that the INTENTION of voter ID laws was to give Mitt Romney, as well as other Republicans, some advantage over Democrats in Pennsylvania. And I agree. Voter ID laws are a POLITICAL tool to shave Democratic votes just enough to allow Republicans to win in close elections. Rep. Turzai understands that entirely and that's why he casually included voter ID in a list of things Pennsylvania Republicans had accomplished.
Voter ID laws....and this has been proven in studies....unfairly targets poor, young and minority voters who, on average, tend to vote Democratic. Poor, young and minority voters are more likely to not have driver's licenses, so targeting that demographic with a new requirement to obtain a state-approved photo ID before being permitted to vote, becomes a GOP tool to shave votes from the Democratic ledger.....perhaps just enough to win in close elections.
Politicians lie....some more than others. However, what we've been seeing from Republicans of late is more than just politicians promising stuff they can't deliver on. What we're seeing is a concerted, pre-meditated effort by Republicans to lie and deceive voters about the need for legislation. While Republicans concoct faux-justifications for busting unions and implementing voter ID laws.....with a wink and a nod.....what they are really trying to do is gain a slight edge on their political opponents.
Occasionally....like with Ohio Tea Party Executive, Tom Zawistowski, or Pennsylvania GOP Statehouse Representative, Mike Turzai....the unadulterated truth slips out.