Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

What Was Said by Witnesses in Senate Hearing on Voter Laws?

             The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing today titled “Jim Crow 2021: The Latest Assault on the Right to Vote.” The Democrat majority titled the hearing, and the title itself caused some problems in the committee. Black and white lawmakers considered the title as “trivializing a violent and bigoted era of American history.      

            As most well-informed readers would assume, the focus of the hearing in the Senate was the new election integrity law recently passed in Georgia. As I have written previously about the law, it requires voters to identify themselves before submitting absentee ballots. However, the law itself suggests different types of identification that can be used. The law codifies ballot drop boxes and expands weekend voting. The law also reduces the number of days for early voting from 19 to 17 and gives an earlier deadline to mail absentee ballots.

            Nothing about the new law is racist, but Democrats are throwing a fit about it and wasting taxpayer funds in holding this hearing. Even the President of the United States and Democrat members of Congress call the law a modern “Jim Crow” measure. Fred Lucas at The Daily Signal found six key points in the hearing. 

1. “True Racism”

Rep. Burgess Owens, R-Utah, who is black, noted that he lived during the Jim Crow era, when state and local laws shut blacks out of elections as well as employment, housing, and education opportunities. Comparing the Georgia law to such measures is “absolutely outrageous,” Owens said. “True racism is this, the projection of the Democratic Party on my proud race. It’s called the soft bigotry of low expectations, “ Owens told the Senate panel….

“What I find extremely offensive is the narrative from the left that black people are not smart enough, not educated enough, not desirous enough of an education, to do what every other culture and race does in this country: Get an ID,” Owens said….

2. “Propagated Primarily by Democrats”

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, later educated his fellow senators on the legacy of Jim Crow, but Senate Judiciary Chairman Richard Durbin, D-Ill., didn’t want to hear it.

Lee noted that during post-Civil War Reconstruction, many black members of Congress – all Republicans – were elected in the South. But after federal troops withdrew from the South, Democrat-controlled state governments established Jim Crow laws to prevent blacks from voting and other activities.

“This was a system of laws designed to hold black Americans back, hold them back in part because white Democrats in the South didn’t want them to vote and didn’t like the fact that they were voting as and being elected as Republicans,” Lee said. “Let’s not compare a voter registration law – one that makes sure dead people can’t vote – to that. We can do better than that, and we should.”

But Durbin argued that both … political parties changed.

“I will concede the era of Jim Crow in the South was propagated primarily by Democrats – southern Democrats and segregationists,” the Illinois Democrat said. “Political alignment changed in America starting in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and Republicans became more dominant in those states for the most part. What we have today is the party of Lincoln is refusing to join us in expanding the Voting Rights Act.”

Lee responded to Durbin with more history.

“Republicans never ceased to be the party that believes the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments matter and that the inherent dignity of the immortal human soul is such that [it] should never be denigrated by subjecting someone, based on their race, to a lack of civil rights,” Lee said. “So, it’s not fair, it’s not accurate, to portray the two parties as having somehow crossed… Some Southern Democrats later became Republicans. That’s true. But it didn’t change the Republican Party’s alignment on this.”

Durbin came back to say, “The political alignment has changed. That’s obvious.” He argued that Republicans no longer back the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Lee responded: “It is not accurate to say the Democrats support the Voting Rights Act and Republicans do not. We are talking about a particular application of Section 5.”

Durbin: “I happen to disagree with that.”

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act was rejected by the Supreme Court in a 2013 ruling that determined state election laws did not have to be reviewed by the federal government.

3. “Unlike Anything We’ve Seen Since … Jim Crow”

Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., expressed strong disdain for the law passed in his state.

“This is a full-fledged assault on voting rights, unlike anything we’ve seen since the era of Jim Crow,” Warnock told the Senate committee….

Several Republicans on the committee objected to the hearing’s title.

After calling the Georgia law and other similar state proposals “Jim Crow” several times, Durbin later conceded that it was perhaps not exactly like Jim Crow.

“Jim Crow, at its worst, was more violent than what we have today,” Durbin said.

4. Abrams on Voter ID and a “Stolen” Election

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., noted that a report by the 2005 Carter-Baker Commission determined that voter fraud wasn’t widespread but did occur and could affect the outcome of close elections.

“Absentee ballots remain the largest source of voter fraud. That’s what the Carter-Baker Commission said, not me,” Graham said in prefacing his question. “The Carter-Baker report recommended prohibiting third-party organizations, candidates, and political party activists from handling absentee ballots. That’s related to ballot harvesting.”

“My questions for Ms. Abrams: Do you support voter identification laws?” Graham asked…. “Yes,” responded Abrams. … What I have objected to is restrictive identification.”

Graham then asked: “Do you support the idea that voting should be limited to American citizens?” “Yes,” Abrams responded.

Graham asked: “Do you support ballot harvesting? Are you familiar with that term?”

Abrams answered that perhaps at Native American reservations it is necessary for tribal elders to gather ballots.

When Graham asked about other circumstances, she said: “It depends on the situation.” …

5. Losing All-Star Game or “Losing Our Democracy”

Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., noted that Abrams spoke with Major League Baseball executives in the days leading up to their decision to pull the All-Star Game from Atlanta. She used the term “Jim Crow 2.0” to refer to the Georgia law 10 times, Cotton said.

[Under more questioning, Abrams declared that the boycott of Georgia was not her goal in this case.] …

But she added: “To me, one day of a game is not worth losing our democracy.”

6. “Why Should We Be Made to Be Like California?”

New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner, a Democrat, expressed concerns about congressional Democrats’ legislation, known as HR 1 and S 1, that would lead to nationalizing elections, eliminating state voter ID laws, and expanding the contentious practice of ballot harvesting, among other things.

“I don’t want Texas to have to be like New Hampshire or Arkansas or California,” Gardner … told the Senate committee. “But why should we be made to be like California in particular, or other states? We have a way of doing it that works for the people of New Hampshire. The turnout is proof that it works. And this kind of federal legislation is harmful for our way of voting.” …

New Hampshire, Gardner noted, doesn’t have early voting or no-excuse absentee voting. Still, he said, the state has among the nation’s highest voter participation rates….

He told senators that passing HR 1 and S 1 would undermine New Hampshire’s success.

“If you were to pass this, you’re completely taking away a process that has developed in New Hampshire for many, many years, works in the state. Why would you want to do it when the turnout is as high as it is?” he said.

            It appears from Lucas’s report that the Democrats do not want to listen to reasons for why the Georgia is not a Jim Crow law. They believe what they want to believe, and they will do what they think that they need to do to advance their agenda. They do not care about what the people in New Hampshire, Georgia, or any other state want.

The longer I listen to the so-called reasoning of Democrats, the more I understand a statement made by someone living in Europe. The statement goes something like this: The United States may survive a Joe Biden presidency, but it will never survive the people who voted for a president like him. Another statement that seems to apply here: You cannot fix stupid!

America will not survive unless her citizens wake up and look behind the curtains to see who is pulling Biden’s strings. America needs citizens who are well-read and intelligent, not just sheep following a donkey down the road.

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