Not that, if they did, they intended to do that, mind you: they were probably just intending to scare their donors into giving them money (link via @MattCover) by screaming about how us awful, awful Republicans are so insistent that you should show have to show a picture ID when you vote. Well, they’re Democrats. Screaming about Republicans is what they do – besides, these days they don’t precisely have a plethora of other options that are what you’d call viable when it comes to winning elections.
But that’s not what interests me. No, what interests me is this sentence:
More than 5 million voters could be affected in states including Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Nevada, Virginia and California…
Hmm. Let’s look at those states. Assessments of each one is based on the latest Cook ratings for the Electoral College and the Senate.
- Ohio. Democratic-held. Sherrod Brown is popular, and normally favored to hold the seat; Ohio is increasingly hostile territory for Obama, and cannot be relied to stay Democratic in the Presidential election.
- Florida. Democratic-held. See Ohio, except that
Ben [Bill, sorry] Nelson is not as popular.
- Wisconsin. Democratic-held. Open seat: both the Senate and the Presidential election may flip.
- Nevada. Republican-held. Incumbent Dean Heller is one of only two GOP Senators who can be considered at this point to be at any real risk of losing his seat, and that’s only because he was appointed after the incumbent resigned. The state itself may flip in the Presidential election.
- Virginia. Democratic-held. Open seat: like Wisconsin, both the Senate and the Presidential election may flip.
- California. Democratic-held. …Generally considered a safe Democratic haven, on both the Senate and Presidential level.
Gee. One of these things is not like the other. You have six states, five of which are considered to be battleground states in 2012 (and all five were won by Obama in the first place); of those five states, four are held by Democrats, and all four are considered at least competitive. The five million number undoubtedly comes from this report by the Brennan Center for Justice, by the way. Please note that these ‘restrictions’ consist of: photo ID requirements (Wisconsin); reform of voter registration drives (Florida); reform of early voting (Ohio, Florida); reform of felon voting (Florida).
Please note that the DSCC just read the executive summary and not the full report; if they had, they would have noticed that Nevada and California have voter-related bills, not laws, in play. For that matter, if the DSCC had been thinking then they might have considered that there is not a chance in Hell that the Republicans could currently pass anything in California – and, in fact, what’s waiting for Brown’s signature right now is a bill that would make it easier for people to register to vote by taking the process online. I bring this up because, really, there’s no reason for California to be on that list: it’s not part of any sort of supposed nefarious Republican plot; it’s not particularly reforming its election fraud prevention process; and it’s not realistically a state in play on either the Senate or Presidential level.
Unless, of course, those rumors about Dianne Feinstein being in trouble and considering retirement are actually true. It turns out that her erstwhile treasurer may have stolen over four million dollars from Feinstein’s campaign fund (bringing down the Senators cash-on-hand from 5.2 million to 662 thousand); that’s a lot of money to lose at a critical moment, even in California and even for a powerful Senator like Feinstein. Which may be why the DSCC slipped California into the mix…
Moe Lane (crosspost)