The Daily Show: Block the vote

From the August 23, 2012 edition

America’s demographics have changed dramatically over the past few decades, and there’s two ways a political party can react to that. You can expand your appeal to a new field of voters by making their issues your issues or, like Ohio and Pennsylvania, you can pass voter ID laws that disproportionally affect Democratic voters — minorities, the young, the old and the poor. The young, the old, the poor and minorities are the Four Horsemen of the Democalypse.

As you well known, in-person voter fraud is an enormous issue, with exactly 10 documented cases of it in the entire country alone since 2000. That’s .000000284 percent of all votes!

So you can see why Pennsylvania would want to enact a voter ID law that one study claims would disenfranchise more than 758,000 of Pennsylvania’s lawfully registered voters, or around nine percent of the state’s electorate. But that’s the price you pay to prevent something that doesn’t happen.

It’s like how peanut butter is made with huge amounts of hydrochloric acid to dissolve any potential dragon bones that may have gotten into it during the manufacturing process. Will you lose some who die by eating hydrochloric acid? Of course, but isn’t it worth knowing that your peanut butter is dragon bone free.

Of course this law created for specifically partisan purposes will be carried out in a non-partisan, evenhanded manner. Much in the way that Robosaurus, while created as an automobile-eating machine, will most likely valet park at your party with no foreseeable problems. Maybe I’m being too hard on Pennsylvania — as long as the voters are educated about the law in a nonpartisan way.

“The contract for the job of educating Pennsylvanians on the new voting restrictions was given to a man who has helped raise $30,000 for the Mitt Romney for President campaign. He’s also the former executive director of the state Republican Party,” Rachel Maddow reported on MSNBC.


As ridiculous as this voter ID business is, it’s not like somebody is going to do something crazy like give Republican counties more time to vote than Democratic counties.

“The latest twist on this is Republicans in Ohio restricting early voting hours on Democratic counties, but extending voting hours in the Republican ones,” MSNBC reported.

You might wonder how it’s even possible for Ohio to divide up voting hours by how districts vote. Well, Ohio’s county election boards each have two Republicans and two Democrats, and the guy who breaks the tie in establishing hours is Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, a Republican. Maybe Secretary Husted could explain how fewer people voting somehow enhances the democratic process.

“We try to make it easy, but we can’t — I say we’re not 7-Eleven — we can’t stay open 24/7 and let anybody vote by any rule that they want to,” Husted said.

Surely we can’t expect our constitutionally guaranteed voting rights to meet the same high standards as a combination gas station, convenient store. Let me remind you of their strict dress code — no shoes, no shirt, no service.