If America were A True Democracy Trump Would Have Lost The Election In A Landslide

Had the election been free and fair Trump would have been pounded even in the Electoral College. While, however, Democrats have focused on an inclusive message meant to benefit all the people, a message that the vast majority of American are in agreement, Republicans have focused on gaming the system primarily via the twin tactics of gerrymandering and voter suppression. Of course Russian hacking and a bungled FBI investigation supported these tactics, but mostly it was rigging the voting system that has been carrying the day for Republicans in recent election cycles.

One of the most effective tactics over the years has been the gerrymandering of Congressional Districts. While more votes in resent times have been cast for Democrats for the House of Representatives, the House is nevertheless overwhelmingly in the hands of the Republicans because of gerrymandering. That is not democracy, it’s political gamesmanship.

But just as devastating in our recent presidential election has been voter suppression, a fact that seems to have gotten lost in all the hype over the personal characteristics of the two highly unpopular candidates. Hundreds of thousands of votes in generally blue and neutral states controlled by Republican governors simply never materialize. There were ID laws designed to favor Republican voters. There were Republican panels that skimmed off thousands of likely democratic voters on flimsy grounds.

But the greatest voter crime occurred in the large metropolitan areas where there was a dearth of polling places and early election days opportunities that made it impossible to accommodate millions of likely democratic voters who just gave up in frustration trying to vote. In many key battleground states it has been estimated that between a quarter of a million to half million Democratic votes were lost to such Republican voter suppression tactics.

Serving as a smokescreen for their undemocratic tactics, the Republicans have whipped up a false campaign of voter fraud against Democrats, something that year after year has been proven a hoax. Their main contention is that election rolls are filled with folks register in more that one state as well as lots of desisted folks. This is, indeed, a fact. So what? Under the current system it is nearly impossible to keep voter rolls up to date. But it is just as impractical for that fact to be turned into massive voter fraud.

To begin with people have a low opinion of how much their one vote really counts. So does anyone really think that someone who has, say, recently moved to and roistered to vote in Michigan from New Jersey is going to vote in Michigan and then rush back to vote again in New Jersey? Really? Or what about all those dead folks still on the rolls? Are thousands of zombies showing up around the country to vote?

I know, someone is putting together a long list of dead folks and then paying a bunch of people to impersonate them. That is easy — wrong. First off such an illegal operation would stick out like a sore thumb if attempted on a meaningful scale. Moreover the risk reward is way out of balance. No reputable political organization would risk such a flimsy undertaking. The same goes for trying to put together an army of noncitizen voters as the Donald is claiming. It is simply not practical in any remotely meaningful way.

But here is the important point. If President Trump is so dumb as to insist on investigating his hallucinations of massive voter fraud, then Democrats have got to turn the tables on him and his Republican allies and use it as an opening to publicize the fact that massive Republican voter suppression was the main reason for Trump’s narrow victory. I see a real opportunity here.

Jim Ridgway, Jr. military writer — author of the American Civil War classic, “Apprentice Killers: The War of Lincoln and Davis.” Christmas gift, yes!

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