Monday, November 3, 2008

J.B. Van Hollen Decides Not To Appeal Tossed Lawsuit, Happy with Voter Faud Scare Effect

Since election day is here, guess what the Wisconsin AG did today? He dropped his threat of an appeal regarding voter registration that was tossed a few days ago. Surprised? Not really, when you consider the attention he drew to the mythical voter fraud threat to our democracy, and the possible effect of discouraging a few citizens from voting. The Wisconsin State Journal explains:

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen won't appeal a decision dismissing his voter registration lawsuit before Election Day. Justice Department officials said that day they planned to appeal, but spokesman Bill Cosh said Monday the agency realizes there's no chance of relief before the election.

According to John Nichols, wimp meister writer for the Nation and the Capital Times online:

After claiming for weeks that there was nothing partisan about his ambitious election season regimen of suing the Government Accountability Board and dispatching attorneys and special agents to polling places where high Democratic turnouts might reasonably be expected, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen comes out of the closet Tuesday night.
He's co-hosting the "Wisconsin GOP Election Night Party" -- where supporters of John McCain and Sarah Palin will toast their successes or drown their sorrows -- at a Waukesha hotel. Van Hollen, a McCain campaign co-chair, will be joined by other non-partisan good government activists like Republican congressmen Paul Ryan and Jim Sensenbrenner.

Not very, says top McCain aide Ronald Michaelson, the former executive director of the Illinois Board of Elections who serves as a key member of the McCain-Palin campaign's "Honest and Open Election Committee," was asked by ProPublica reporter Chisun Lee whether he could name a single instance in which fake voter registrations lead to phony votes. "Do we have a documented instance of voting fraud that resulted from a phony registration form?" asked Michaelson rhetorically. "No, I can't cite one chapter and verse."

He was also asked whether Republican campaigners -- and, presumably, officials such as Van Hollen -- have gone too far in stirring up fears about voter fraud. "Well, it doesn't help," admitted Michaelson. "It has captured the attention of a lot
of people. Maybe it's because there's nothing else to talk about."

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