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On Fucked Caucuses Post

hobson's picture

I had tried to post this as a comment on Lambert's post about the Texas primary but it wouldn't post. I'm assuming I set off some spam filter so I'm making it an expanded post instead.

Please don't talk to me about the GOP legitimately complaining about vote fraud, in Texas or anywhere else. They have consistently maintained that vote fraud is widespread and is a democratic specialty. They have used it to try voter suppression all over the country.

You might want to look at this to see what Republicans do with vote fraud in Texas.

A years-long, high-profile campaign by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, a Republican, to prosecute elderly Democratic Party volunteers for voter fraud because they helped homebound seniors to vote by mailing their absentee ballots -- but not signing the backs of envelopes -- fell apart on federal court house steps in Texas on Wednesday.

If you want more fuel to throw on the fire, Michelle Malkin is with you on Obama and campaign fraud. She goes after ACORN and Obama's connection to them here. I'm sure all of you would agree with here when she says: But where there’s left-wing laundering smoke, there’s fire.

Let's not forget, from the Washington Post:

Nearly half the U.S. attorneys slated for removal by the administration last year were targets of Republican complaints that they were lax on voter fraud, including efforts by presidential adviser Karl Rove to encourage more prosecutions of election- law violations, according to new documents and interviews.

Read the The Republican War on Voting
over at the American Prospect. You'll find more on ACORN and their voter registration drives.

As for Texas, the following is from a Tx state representative's site on the Texas primary selection process. Could it be more convoluted?:

Texas Delegate Selection Process

Texas will send a total of 228 delegates to the Democratic National Convention. Texas delegates are determined as follows:

126 Pledged Senatorial District Level Delegates - (“Primary Selected Delegates”)
126 delegates will be assigned based on primary results in 31 State Senate Districts (Texas allocates delegates based on its Senate Districts, not Congressional Districts like many states). The number of delegates from each Senate district varies based on Democratic turnout in the last two general elections. The delegates from each Senate District are assigned to candidates proportionally based on the percentages they receive on primary day.

Quick Facts

* Senate District delegates are pledged delegates (They are pledged to vote for whom they are assigned)
* Senate District delegates are assigned proportionally based on primary election results in the Senate District on March 4th, 2008
* Senate Districts are allocated between 2 and 8 delegates based on Democratic voter turnout in the 2004and 2006 General Elections
* A candidate must win at least 15% of the vote in the Senate District to win a delegate

42 At-Large Pledged Delegates and 25 Pledged Party Leader Delegates -
(“Caucus Selected Delegates”)
These 67 delegates are assigned based on the presidential preference of the delegates who attend the State Convention on June 6th, a process that begins at Precinct Conventions(similar to a caucus) held on the night of the March 4th primary, followed by conventions held at the County or Senate District level March 29th.All 67 delegates are assigned to candidates based on delegate sign in at the State Convention.42 of the delegates will be elected as At-Large Delegates at the State Convention and 25 are chosen based on their position as a state/local elected official or Democratic Party official.

Quick Facts

* These 67 are all pledged delegates.

* The Caucus is held in 3 stages – the Precinct Convention, County or Senate District Convention and the State Convention.
* The number of delegates is based on the number of people who voted in the 2006 General Election.
* The percentage of delegates assigned to a candidate is based on the percentage of people who sign in (caucus) for a candidate at each step of the process, culminating with the presidential preference of delegates to the State Convention.
* A candidate must win 15% of the vote in the Senate District to win a delegate.

32 Super Delegates and 3 Unpledged Delegates - (“Super Delegates”)
Texas’ 32 Super Delegates are made up of Members of Congress, Members of the DNC, past House Speakers and former DNC Chairs. The 3 unpledged delegates (Add-Ons) are chosen by virtue of their extraordinary efforts on behalf of Democratic causes and the Texas Democratic Party. These delegates can vote for whomever they choose.

Hillary did take notice by the way. If you remember, her campaign wrote a letter to the TDK expressing concerns about the primary here.

I don't doubt the stories in this video, but that's what almost every thing in this video is, a story. I think only two, maybe three scenes actually presented figures and those were mostly extrapolations of what could be expected statewide if the same things happened all over the state. It's anecdotal evidence.

Maybe before presenting it as gospel evidence of evil, it would be a good idea to do as Lambert says above:

I wish I had a transcript to analyze. And a list of the sources. That professor sounded pretty authoritative…. (emphasis added)

That would seem to me to represent a more analytical approach in keeping with what you all want PB 2.0 to be about.

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Caro's picture
Submitted by Caro on

... thorough analysis on caucus fraud.
http://www.lynettelong.com/caucusfraud/

Most of us at Corrente are familiar with her work and that of Peniel Cronin
http://www.talkleft.com/tag/Peniel%20Cronin

and Paul Lukasiak.
http://www.correntewire.com/count_whose_...

http://www.correntewire.com/count_whose_...

http://www.correntewire.com/documentary_...

http://www.correntewire.com/rbc_violatio...

Before throwing stones, make sure you know what we know.

Carolyn Kay
MakeThemAccountable.com

hobson's picture
Submitted by hobson on

Caro,

I don't see my post as throwing stones. I was originally trying to post a reply comment to gqmatinez who said:

The entire Dem Party is in trouble. The GOP won’t let voter fraud go silently, nor should they. Yeah the GOP will be hypocrites, but if the fraud is real then it needs to get out, and it will get out.

I'm not questioning that there is a problem with caucuses and that there were probably irregularities in the Texas caucus.

On the links you provided, From the Talk Left post:

Ms. Cronin stresses that the report is not about Obama-bashing. It is clearly about the flaws of the caucus as a voting system, as distinguished from its value as a forum of debate and discussion.

From what I can gather, Paul's posts, which I had already read, are about the DNC's decision on the Florida and Michigan decision and on the relative strengths of Obama and Clinton in the primaries.

I think Lynette Long's material is problematic. She attacks ACORN and in fact uses material from Michelle Malkin as an example of Obama's connection to them as proof of fraudulent voter registration by Democrats. I'm ready to question anything by Michelle Malkin because I see her as a propagandist for right wing ideas, not as anyone concerned with injustice or truth. Rather than making this into a post on a different subject, you can read about the case against ACORN if you're not familiar.

Oddly, the first article Lynette Long quotes in the section on articles is from Lambert. Proof becomes a little self referential. As I said, I don't doubt the anecdotes or testimony or whatever Lambert wants to call it in the film. But an awful lot of it seems to be things like "an Obama supporter," a "guy with glasses" etc. I couldn't find the part that was evidence of an organized plot on the part of the Obama campaign to steal all the caucuses.

Maybe your last sentence should be on the masthead of all PB 2.0 sites. Are you saying you're so sure you know about caucus fraud that I shouldn't post if I don't agree that it is irrefutable fact?

Submitted by lambert on

I'm not clear why you think this would be odd.

The site is an aggregator, and this post was on the topic to be aggregated, and so it was aggregated. If this be oddly circular, then the entire web is oddly circular.

If you have issues with the linked-to post, then raise them; it's a matter, again, of doing your homework. Otherwise, I'm unsure what your point might be.

[ ] Very tepidly voting for Obama [ ] ?????. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

intranets's picture
Submitted by intranets on

Let's get it right and not play into the GOP playbook.

Voter fraud is what GOP claims is a huge problem, all these people voting as Mickey Mouse, or them "illegals".

Voting fraud is what is done by groups like the GOP who seek to purge thousands of legally registered voters. Voting fraud is when thousand of Diebold electronic votes go missing and they say, oops. Voting fraud is when elections officials never do any sanity checks or ballot reconciliation to find these "glitches" like in 2004 when 3,000+ votes just showed up in a precinct with a few hundred votes, or more recently when thousands of votes "glitched" and never transferred off the memory cards.

Caro's picture
Submitted by Caro on

... is also pretending to be for Hillary, to be elected a delegate, and then saying ha ha ha I'm really for Obama.

Voter fraud is also telling Hillary supporters to go home, they've already been counted, when they haven't.

Voter fraud is pretending that the process is about one person one vote, when that process gives a lot more weight for choosing delegates to caucus votes, rather than to better-attended primaries.

There's lots, lots, more, if you'd bother to read the material at the links I posted.

Oh, and goddess knows we don't want to play into the hands of the GOP, the way so many of the Obama supporters did in using right-wing hate and viciousness to attack Hillary Clinton.

Submitted by ohio on

if it's given by someone who it happened to, isn't it? That's not anecdotal. You can say there's no corroboration, unless there's witness after witenss giving eyewitness testimony. There's the corroboration. You can still contend that's not enough---there has to be objective, scientific facts, and that's certainly an argument to be made. An unfair argument, but an argument nonetheless.

OTOH, is it really good enough to point at an opposition party and say they're even worse? They suck big time? Is that really a defense?

Isn't any kind of coercion like this bad? Aren't we supposed to be against this kind of shit, regardless of who does it?

Submitted by ohio on

We're the good guys now. May the Flying Spaghetti Monster help us all.

So the good guys haven't all run away. We're here. And I personally am not running away. Nope. Not me. I'm trying to push the cats out of the way so I can hide under the bed.

Kidding. I can't fit under the bed.

FrenchDoc's picture
Submitted by FrenchDoc on

It's "under the bus"... which is where we all are now... it's good company though :-)

Go Global!

Submitted by ohio on

Too crowded under here and I keep spilling my drink.

Under the bed is closer to the liquor cabinet. I'm all about conservation of energy.

"Are you there, Vodka? It's me, Ohio."

FrenchDoc's picture
Submitted by FrenchDoc on

When Obama gets elected, the whole lot of us (with VL first in line) will be sent to reeducation camp, AKA Rick Warren Megachurch to be enlightened.

Go Global!

Submitted by ohio on

Because if you can spit through your front teeth, all you need is a lighter and a bottle of vodka and you can become a human flame thrower.

I swear, if anyone tries to send VL to be reeducated, I will teach them a whole new meaning of the word, "enlightened."

(I really do know how to do this---me and my rotten, misspent youth. Sigh. Good times.)

Me? Well, don't you have to be educated before you can be reeducated? I think so.

So not to worry all you educated people. Once you drag me kicking and screaming out from under the bed, I will flamethrow and pull hair in defense of you. Oh, and I'm a kicker, too.

hobson's picture
Submitted by hobson on

ohio,

It may be eyewitness testimony but most of it is as I said above, rather vague and general. It also seems to have been concentrated in certain areas. I understood that half the complaints came from the El Paso area. I am only contending that it is not irrefutable proof as presented that the Obama campaign conspired to steal the caucus which seems to be accepted on Corrente.

I am not saying what Republicans do is an excuse for what Dems do. But I don't accept this as a reason to validate what Republicans have been saying about the Dems for years and have been using to distort the electoral process.

It's interesting the way people keep extrapolating and attributing things that weren't said. I'm sure you all will have your opinions regardless of what I post. By all means, I would expect people to be against this kind of thing.

Submitted by lambert on

It's not "vague and general" at all -- which, you will notice, contradict Hobson's original claim that the movie was anecdotal, since anecdotes are, by definition, concrete. Oh well. Any stick to beat a dog.

Have you actually watched the movie? I have, several times. The strength of the movie is exactly in the concrete detail; ordinary people speaking up.

I'm glad, Hobson, that you expect people to be "against" election theft. What I'm a little unclear on is how you propose to bring it to light, other than allowing the whistleblowers to speak. Perhaps the perps will spontaneously confess?

UPDATE Cue the single example of a "not irrefutable" "story," as we laboriously set fire to yet another straw man. I am going to have to make a transcript of the fucking thing. Good thing I'll be able to bill for that. In the meantime, I challenge anyone to watch the movie, and come away with the same impressions Hobson did. Vague and general my sweet Aunt Fanny.

[ ] Very tepidly voting for Obama [ ] ?????. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Submitted by ohio on

They blew the whistle. Lots of them. You've decided to dismiss them and their claims because it is not in your interest to believe them.

The position you took in your original post was: But the Republicans are worse!

Not the point. Never the point. And not good enough.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

part of what is so shocking about what happened in Texas is that it was straight out of the GOP playbook. The voter intimidation is what the GOP does year after year, pretending that people aren't on the list, straight out of the GOP playbook. It just sickens me that this happened in the Democratic party, and even more that a man who is a member of the United Church of Christ could have perpetrated it. I am UCC, and this is not in keeping with the doctrine of extravagant welcome.

Submitted by lambert on

Republican election theft is not relevant to this post for four reasons, two that I see as tendentious, two serious:

1. Obama's platform calls on us to "abandon the politics of partisan division". Therefore, considering what Republicans do, versus what Democrats do is, for regular Democrats at least, at the very best divisive, something to be avoided at all costs.* Why the Democrats chose to go post-partisan and eliminate party as an axis for evaluation I don't know, but do it they did.

2. Obama has personally assured us that "turning up the heat" on Republicans won't bring "change." Therefore, attacking Republican practices, as this post does, is not only divisive, but ineffectual, and, in the worst case, could be seen to undermine Obama's leadership.

And not tendentiously:

3. In a world where the putative nominee of the Democratic Party can vote to gut the rule of law and the Constitution by giving retroactive immunity to the telcos with FISA [cough] reform, and a Republican like Bruce Fein -- who wrote Clinton's articles of impeachment, for pity's sake -- can defend the Constitution and the rule of law -- then, indeed, the difference between Republican and Democrat is not what we thought it was. Indeed, as it turns out, there can be honest and principled Republicans, and dishonest and unprincipled Democrats -- as, again, the FISA vote shows quite clearly.

4. And finally, surely election theft is "trans-partisan" (Paul Lukasiak's term for "party invariant"). That is, Democrats -- supposing there to be such an animal in our post partisan era -- shouldn't be engaging in election theft even if Republicans do. "Just because the other boiz do it doesn't make it right." Eh?

To the remaining substance of Hobson's remarks:

5. I'm at a loss to see what Malkin has to do with either the movie to which my post was linked, or to my post. Neither mentions Malkin. And even so, the issue isn't what Malkin writes about ACORN, but whether what she writes is true, a point that the post does not address. Or is the idea ("Malkin is with you") that if Malkin writes that A is true, we must believe that A is false? Surely that is to surrender all our critical faculties and devolve into "four legs good, two legs bad" mode; a strange existential stance for Democrats!

6. The TX caucus process is "convoluted." And your point would be?

7. "It’s anecdotal evidence." It may seem that way to you if you haven't done the homework to put the material in context. First, the caucus system is itself deeply flawed and open to abuse. Second, well documented and numerous abuses took place, as shown in the TX affidavits. Third, the movie has witnesses who confirm both points in vivid detail.

That's the context in which these "anecdotes" took place -- although personally, I would prefer that "witnessing" or possibly "testimony" be substituted for "anecdote," just to make the nature of the "stories" we're dealing with crystal clear.

In summary, I think you're shooting the messengers -- or rather, the whistleblowers who -- believers in the idea that such things can't happen in America -- showed great courage by agreeing to appear in this film.

Oh, the professor: Yes, that wording was a little care-free. Some of the names appear in the movie, others do not, and if the professor's did, I missed it. However, from exchanges, previous to my post, with people working in this area, I believe I have the name -- however, everyone I know in the field in transit to Denver and out of touch via email. When I have the name, I'll post it.

Now, the important point: I stickied this post and made this comment. If I'm wrong on the post, or wrong in this comment, I hope the PB 2.0-ers here will call that out. We have to start somewhere. I've given the reasons I don't think the post is truthy, but if others disagree, let's thrash it out.

NOTE * This is why the campaign has sunk to the level the houses discussion, and will (my prediction) rapidly devolve into thinly disguised hatred of the old. With party off the table, and policy to be decided after the election by those round the big table, the only remaining way to distinguish the two candidates is by personal characteristics.

UPDATE I forgot to address Hobson's initial premise:

Please don’t talk to me about the GOP legitimately complaining about vote fraud, in Texas or anywhere else.

Huh? What does any of this have to do with GOP complaints, legitimate or otherwise? If the argument is that the movie is a GOP operation, such things tend to be funded -- they don't run out of bandwidth!

[ ] Very tepidly voting for Obama [ ] ?????. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

hobson's picture
Submitted by hobson on

Since the first two arguments are tendentious and apparently not serious, I don't feel the need to answer them.

On #3 I can only say that if you can't see what Malkin or attacks on ACORN have to do with your post, I tendentiously refuse to recognize what the FISA vote has to do with mine.

#4 I didn't say "they do it too so it's ok" I said, in effect, don't use the Republicans as a club. They're not a good club to use to condemm Democrats for bad voting practices.

#5 Caro listed several links that were, I gathered supposed to be exhaustive examinations of the Texas caucuses. As far as I could see only the post linking to Lynette Long actually accused Obama and Co of stealing the Texas caucus (as well as all the others). I found it suspicious, as above that she used ACORN as an example of Obama's fraudulent practices and quoted Malkin on ACORN. The Repubs have been after them for a long time. It seemed to me more Republican clubs to beat him over the head. I find her own site's homepage rather objectionable, no linky goodness for one thing.

#6 My point would be that the Texas primary system is convoluted.

#7 I don't see that we have a dispute on #7. We have different contexts. I guess I was operating in the context that it seems to be accepted here that the case is proven beyond doubt that Obama systematically and illegaly stole the vote.

I have read all sorts of accounts of what happened at caucuses around the country. You could draw a lot of conclusions.

If this link is correct, the Clinton campaign did issue a press release about Texas here. I don't know if or why it wasn't pursued further.

No, I wasn't suggesting that this film had anything to do with the Republicans.

Truth Partisan's picture
Submitted by Truth Partisan on

make me nervous...if witness proof isn't allowable then isn't our whole court system shot? I know there are problems but it works on the premise that witnesses tell what they saw and the case is pieced from that. We don't know exactly what happened in these cases, and everyone is innocent until proven guilty.
If we were detectives, and there are two main rivals involved and a big repression of one of the rivals was made, wouldn't the other one be a reasonable suspect? Do you think that many of the caucus-running people just suddenly got incompetent in TX. in the same way in favor of one candidate? Some of these workers are people like some of us who have worked the caucus and polls for years. Remember also (in case you didn't see various discussions) that some of us (myself included) heard evidence or saw evidence of almost the exact same things done almost the same ways in our various states, again all in favor of one candidate. It was hinted to me by one of the Obama supporters that that was their training--if you are generous you could call it let Hillary people stand up for their own--and that now all that, just boyish enthusiasm for their candidate!--should be water under the bridge. Since the VP Biden pick, it's been a very interesting couple of days, here.
Anyway, always speak up please, and remind us of our blindnesses too.