Tim Dunkin: The suffering suffrage of Illinois

Renew America Every once in a while, you read something in the news which leaves you seething. We live in a world full of both corruption and stupidity — two things which often seem to work synergistically. A couple of days ago, I came across something which had that unique blend of the two, a news story that was like a freshly-brewed cup of tick-me-off in the morning.

The story in question comes out of Illinois, via Andrew Breitbart's Big Government website. Short and to the point, Breitbart's article notes that election officials in The Most Corrupt County in the Most Corrupt State in the Union â„¢ are making sure that every last inmate in the Cook County jail receives a ballot so that they can vote in the upcoming election. Shoot, they're even bringing registration forms along to make sure every murderer, rapist, and child molester in the Cook County prison system is signed up to vote. At the same time, well nigh 35 counties in the state were so slack and lackadaisical that they missed the deadline for mailing out ballots to military personnel from Illinois who are serving overseas, which most likely will result in thousands of our servicemen being unable to participate in this year's election.

What an inversion! Election officials in Illinois (one guess as to which Party the vast majority of them belong to) are scrupulously ensuring that people who should not even be voting, and wouldn't be if we had any sort of a logical and moral system in place, get to cast a ballot. Meanwhile, the one group of people who have done more than just about anybody else to earn the privilege of exercising their suffrage are robbed of the chance by political hacks and lazy bureaucrats. And from what I've been hearing, Illinois isn't the only state where this has been happening.

I'll make no bones about it — people in jail should not be able to vote. In fact, those who have committed felonies should never be able to vote again. Those who have committed crimes against our social order — who have breached our system and thumbed their noses at the rule of law — should not be allowed to participate in elections that will help to determine how that same social order is governed, and what laws are in place to act as rules.

By the same standard, military personnel have more than earned the right to vote. While I certainly wouldn't advocate the sort of system found in Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers, I think that any reasonably intelligent person ought to be able to understand that those who put their lives — literally — on the line in the service of our nation are most deserving of having their ability to influence the direction of that nation be preserved.

But then again, the political system that produced Antoin "Fat Tony" Rezko, Milorad "Hot Rod" Blagojevich, and Barack "No Papers" Obama isn't exactly noted for its wisdom or for its fidelity to sound, moral government.

And if we approach the question strictly from the standpoint of cold, amoral, scrupleless political calculation, why should the Democrats be concerned about this?

Under the guise of "protecting the right to vote," the Democrats have for years sought to extend the franchise to those who have forfeited it by their inability to live by society's rules. One of the undercurrents found in left-wing activism is that of "voting rights restoration," allowing felons and criminals to regain the ability to cast a ballot, just the same as somebody who didn't kill, rape, or rob someone.

Why? Because Democrats know that criminals are going to be one of their most solid constituencies. If you're a crook, who would you vote for — the Party that prides itself on being tough on crime, or the Party that wants to reduce your sentence and give you probation, give you taxpayer-funded Viagra, and give you welfare checks after you get out of the clink? In return, the Democrats get to turn the nation's prison system into a vital, integral part of their electoral coalition, reliably turning out to vote (hey, what else have they got to do?) every two years.

On the other hand, Democrats don't much like it when military personnel vote. This is why they expend so much effort in trying to make sure that as many servicemen and women get cheated out of their votes as possible. This is an important part of Democrat efforts to win elections, especially in states such as North Carolina and Texas where there are lots of military bases, and lots of soldiers from those bases deployed overseas. Indeed, cheating our soldiers of their votes nearly won the Dems the Presidency in 2000. While there was much hullaballo about the thousands of butterfly ballots in West Palm Beach that somehow managed to befuddle scads of Jewish retirees into voting for Pat Buchanan, what we often forget is that Team Gore managed to get over thirty thousand military ballots from Florida tossed out on various technicalities — mostly stemming from issues related to the postmarking of when the ballots were returned, after they'd already been sent out to the soldiers late.

Democrats don't want our soldiers and sailors to vote because military personnel have this annoying tendency to vote Republican more often than not. The military is an institution which encourages its members, systematically, to rely upon both individual initiative, but also upon group cohesion. You have to obey rules. What you do affects others, and therefore the rule of law is enforced upon you. Everyone has to pull his or her weight. There are no welfare checks. Nobody gets to sit on the couch and watch Jerry Springer while other people support them by working hard, building wealth, and creating opportunity. In short, the military exemplifies and encourages the sort of behaviors, attitudes, and expectations that cause people to lean toward the Right side of the political spectrum.

And since, despite Dennis Kucinich's best efforts, the Democrats haven't been able to do away with the military yet, the next best thing is to do away with military votes.

This really burns me up, as it should any red-blooded American who loves our country and who believes in its founding principles. Can you imagine if some pencil-necked socialists had tried to cheat the men serving in the Continental Army of their privilege of voting? George Washington would have had them hung from a pin oak and used for musketry practice.

It is my studied conviction that, should the Republicans be able to weather the ongoing process of Democrat electoral chicanery, and capture back the Congress, electoral reforms need to be one of the first things on the agenda. Democrats thrive on election fraud. We need to starve that beast. No felons should vote. No illegal aliens should vote. No dead people should vote. Mickey Mouse shouldn't vote. Only living, breathing, non-incarcerated citizens with valid picture IDs should ever be able to even come with fifty feet of a ballot box.

Republicans — make it happen!

© Tim Dunkin