The Corner

Suspending Congressional Elections: Vote Suppression at Its Worst

Matthew Boyle has an interesting story in the Daily Caller about North Carolina governor Bev Perdue’s remarks at a Rotary Club meeting. You know, the remarks where she called for suspending congressional elections for two years. Perdue’s press team said it was just a joke, but Boyle says the audio tape of the speech he reviewed contradicts that claim. Perdue’s tone in the audio is “matter-of-fact and her comments are part of a serious speech,” according to Boyle.

Besides being anti-democratic, Perdue’s proposal is also quite ironic. At the end of June, Perdue issued a press release trying to justify her veto of a voter-ID bill passed by the state legislature. In it, she said that the “right to choose our leaders is among the most precious freedoms we have — both as Americans and North Carolinians. North Carolinians who are eligible to vote have a constitutionally guaranteed right to cast their ballots, and no one should put up obstacles to citizens exercising that right.” She also erroneously claimed that the bill would “unnecessarily and unfairly disenfranchise many eligible and legitimate voters.”

Contrary to Perdue’s mistaken claim, voter-ID requirements have been proven — in the courtroom and the polling place — to pose no obstacles to voting. The same cannot be said of suspending elections in violation of the Constitution. Talk about your insurmountable obstacle to Americans being able to “choose our leaders” and “exercising that right” to vote. And it wouldn’t just disenfranchise “many” voters, it would disenfranchise all voters.

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