Sunday, March 27, 2016

Did vote suppression in Illinois swing the Democratic primary to Hillary?

Wow.

I have to say that this just doesn't look good. If the implications of this story by Tom Cahill at UsUncut.com, are even remotely true, then I am about to find my local Hillary office, sign up as a new volunteer, and then take a piss in the storage closet . . . I am that outraged by it.

New Details Reveal Possible Voter Suppression in Illinois Primary

Tom Cahill | March 25, 2016

Thousands of Illinois primary voters turned away from polling places due to lack of ballots have been denied their vote after a recent court ruling.

In six counties across Illinois — Adams, Champaign, Effingham, Madison, Sangamon, and St. Clair — polling places ran out of ballots amid higher-than-expected voter turnout, meaning thousands of voters were sent home after waiting in line. On March 17, Adams County state attorney Jon Barnard went before Adams County circuit judge Chet Vahle to ask for an injunction that would grant those voters the ability to vote late due to ballot issues.

The next day, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, an ardent Hillary Clinton supporter who has introduced her at campaign rallies, filed an appeal in Illinois 4th District Appellate Court to prevent late voting. On March 23, the appellate court issued a stay on Judge Vahle’s injunction, meaning those voters won’t get a chance to cast ballots in this primary. Hillary Clinton won Illinois by roughly 35,000 votes, or a slim 1.8 percent margin, effectively splitting delegates with Sanders.

Maybe there's some kind of less-damning explanation for this, than Lisa Madigan making a decision to "'shut 'em down' since they're Sanders voters." But the proverbial money shot in this particular version of the story, is that in four of the counties where peoples' vote are being denied - like Champaign County, for example, where the University of Illinois is located - SANDERS WON. Another under-represented county in Illinois is Effingham - a very demographically white, working class area of the sort that has been friendly to Bernie in the polls. In a couple of these not-entirely enfranchised counties, Sanders won by A LOT.

Now I know that rural, western, Quincy, Illinois, is a notorious redoubt of far left conspiracy paranoia. But since Hillary just barely eked out a victory here in Illinois, by 1.8%, at least someone has suggested that the under-enfranchised counties may have changed the outcome of the Illinois primary. That person is Adams County State’s Attorney Jon Barnard, who filed a motion to have those counties' voting process extended, so that those denied the ballot due to shortages, could participate.

So, the question is, just who the fuck are these people that are willing to go to the mat for Team "You Shouldn't Be Allowed to Vote Because We Conveniently Ran of out Ballots So Sorry Better Luck Next Time in the General" - anyway? Who are the folks ready to lead the charge against folks' getting the ballot? Oh right, my Attorney General in the great state of Illinois. You can put me in the tinfoil hat brigade if that suits your world view, but the implications of this story are clear: that well-known Hillary surrogate, and probable future Governor of Illinois, Attorney General Lisa Madigan - whose last names sounds like a loud, wet fart to anyone with an Illinois address - may have used her position to fight against those denied the ballot . . . like, literally . . . from actually getting one. The further implication . . . you don't need to be a frickin' Einstein-level genius to connect these proverbial dots . . . I mean it's a pretty basic little string-pattern collage on the lighted wall at the end of the Conspiracy Parlor . . . is that she did this so her buddy Hillary Clinton could barely eke out her very small win in the state of Illinois.

I'm not too familiar with USUncut.com, so I suppose this story could and should be taken with a grain of salt - it's pretty clearly a partisan site. But the flaming radicals at the Quincy, Illinois-based "Herald-Whig" newspaper were covering the story, and Adams County's State's Attorney Jon Dunbar doesn't exactly have that Alex Jones-y, paranoid conspiracy aura about him. The implications of this story are extremely troubling, and if true, need to be publicized in a big huge way, hopefully before the election is certified on the 29th - that's just two days from now. It would certainly be a long shot to prevent that from happening, as Barnard's lawsuit has already been successfully challenged by Madigan's people, and he's not pursuing it further. It would take titanium gonads for someone to take on the Madigan machine in this state, as almost anyone who is politically aware knows.

I've seen some treatment of this story on the Democratic mega-site DailyKos.com, but it didn't get a lot of traction

If this story turns out to be true, whether it "has legs" in the media, or not, a part of the something that makes me want to go to bat for Team Hillary in November, should she be the nominee, has died . . . painfully.

For my part, I only want to say this: you don't fuck with the ballot in the Land of Lincoln. This matter needs to be fully investigated, and explained, to the citizens of this state. They cannot be allowed to get away with this, if their efforts against Illinoisans' right to vote, did indeed swing the primary to Team Hillary. If there can't be a price to pay in terms of delegates, which would of course be small anyway, the price of Madigan's political career SHOULD BE. You don't get to be Governor, if you use your influence to deny Illinois citizens the right to vote, so your friend can be president. Hell, the fuck, no.

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