Indiana’s Secretary of State is being removed from office on charges that he was not eligible for the office he was elected to. From Political Animal:
It hasn’t been a good month for the GOP and election fraud. Two weeks ago, a Maryland jury convicted a Republican official who oversaw illegal voter-suppression tactics in the 2010 election. This week, a state judge found that Indiana’s Secretary of State, Republican Charlie White, not only committed voter fraud in 2010, but wasn’t even eligible to seek the office to which he was elected.
PoliticsUSA frames the sad revelation in terms of Voter ID irony, calling Indiana the “flagship” of the GOP’s war on voting:
Well, yesterday, in the flagship state for Republican Voter ID laws, Indiana’s Republican Sec. of State and chief election officer Charlie White was ordered to be removed from office after an Indiana judge ruled that he was ineligible for the office. White is also being charged in a separate matter with seven criminal felony charges, including three counts of “voter fraud” and charges of theft and perjury.
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, representing the Recount Commission, says White will stay in office (because voting laws are for the other people?). The Indy Star noted wryly that “His criminal trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 30. Felons are ineligible to serve as Secretary of State.”
It is true that almost zero cases of actual voter fraud (by voters…in elections…) are identifiable, an argument used most frequently by progressives in their attempt to beat back the Right-Wing groundswell of voter suppression. Yesterday, in a crushing defeat, South Carolina’s Voter ID law was blocked by the Justice Department:
Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez said the law didn’t meet the burden under the Voting Rights Act and tens of thousands of minorities in South Carolina might not be unable to cast ballots under the law.
Perez said non-whites comprise about one-third of South Carolina’s registered voters. Minorities also are one-third of the registered voters who don’t have the right ID to vote.
Much has been made of the ridiculousness of many of these laws, including Texas’ new law which allows gun permits as valid for voting but not student IDs. Attorney General Eric Holder has made it clear that his office will take a close look at Voter IDs in the months leading up to the 2012. Conservatives have predictably rushed to discredit Holder as politically motivated.
Read all about nationwide voter suppression efforts in one of our most popular posts of 2011: With Voter Suppression, the Right Wing Rolls Out a Dubious, Nationwide Attack on Americans