Never a dull moment with the Justice Department of Eric Holder, aka “the right man at the right time to protect our citizens in the critical years ahead.”
In fact, it would be more accurate to say he’s the right man at the right time to protect our non-citizens in the critical years ahead. Unbelievably (or, perhaps, entirely too believably), Holder has told Georgia that it may no longer verify identification in order to ensure that voting is done only by citizens eligible to vote. The AP reports:
ATLANTA — The Justice Department has rejected Georgia’s system of using Social Security numbers and driver’s license data to check whether prospective voters are citizens, a process that was a subject of a federal lawsuit in the weeks leading up to November’s election.
In a letter released on Monday, the Justice Department said the state’s voter verification program is frequently inaccurate and has a “discriminatory effect” on minority voters. The decision means Georgia must halt the citizenship checks, although the state can still ask the Justice Department to reconsider, according to the letter and to the Georgia secretary of state’s office.
“This flawed system frequently subjects a disproportionate number of African-American, Asian and/or Hispanic voters to additional, and more importantly, erroneous burdens on the right to register to vote,” Loretta King, acting assistant attorney general of the Justice Department’s civil rights division, said. King’s letter was sent to Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker on Friday.
Georgia is required to seek DOJ approval before implementing voting protocols because of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (see George Will here and Roger Clegg here). Quite apart from the fact that the VRA is an anachronism in modern America, is there not something perverse about cancelling out the votes of eligible citizens — the inevitable result of permitting ineligible citizens and non-citizens to vote, as DOJ is effectively forcing Georgia to do here — under the auspices of something called the “Voting Rights Act”?
The decision by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to deny preclearance of Georgia’s already implemented citizenship verification process shows a shocking disregard for the integrity of our elections. With this decision, DOJ has now barred Georgia from continuing the citizenship verification program that DOJ lawyers helped to craft. DOJ’s decision also nullifies the orders of two federal courts directing Georgia to implement the procedure for the 2008 general election. The decision comes seven months after Georgia requested an expedited review of the preclearance submission.
“DOJ has thrown open the door for activist organizations such as ACORN to register non-citizens to vote in Georgia’s elections, and the state has no ability to verify an applicant’s citizenship status or whether the individual even exists. DOJ completely disregarded Georgia’s obvious and direct interest in preventing non-citizens from voting, instead siding with the ACLU and MALDEF. Clearly, politics took priority over common sense and good public policy.
Handel’s letter demonstrates the absurdity of the claims by DOJ’s Civil Rights Division of undue burdens simple verification — i.e., the process airport security personnel put you through if you want to get on an airplane and Amtrak randomly puts you through to get on a train — imposes on minority voters:
It is important to underscore that not a single person has come forward to say he or she could not vote because of the verification process. Further, while DOJ argues that the process is somehow discriminatory, the historic voter turnout among Hispanic and African-American voters in the 2008 general elections clearly says otherwise.
This outrage does not happen in a vacuum. It comes on the heels of the Civil Rights Division’s astounding dismissal of the slam-dunk voter intimidation case against members of the New Black Panther Party in Philadelphia (a case in which the Justice Department surrendered after it had already won), and Justice’s blatant undermining of a federal law that commands states to purge their voter registration lists of ineligible voters (e.g., citizens who have died or moved out of state) in order to minimize opportunities for fraud. (See Hans von Spakovsky’s incisive work on these issues, here and here). At the same time the Justice Department is busy preserving the infrastructure of fraud, congressional Democrats are filling the overflowing coffers of the notorious voter-fraud practitioners at ACORN — longtime allies of President Obama.
No need to wait another 18 months: We are losing the 2010 election right now.