How's this for dirty election tricks:

A leaflet distributed in black neighborhoods in Baltimore Maryland.

It reads:


Come out to vote on November 6th [sic]

Before you come to vote make sure you pay your

—parking tickets
—motor vehicle tickets
—overdue rent


If I were december, I would have titled the thread: “Are all Republicans evil crooks because this happened and no one knows who did it?”


From your link…

I don’t know why that assumption seems “safe”. Assumptions that seem equally “safe” to me are White Nationalists, stupid kids with a laser printer, or some bizarre fraternity hazing.

The joke about giving out the wrong date is a very old one. It’s too bad that Chatterbox thinks Blacks are that stupid. And it’s too bad that you failed to point out Chatterbox’s laughable logical fallacy.

Blacks aren’t stupid, people are stupid. Or at least a certain percentage of any given group: Hoosiers, Lithuanians, Catholics, stamp collectors, dog lovers, cat lovers, you name it.

Any attempt to dissuade persons of any particular group from voting that is based on the presumed stupidity of that group is going to work, at least to some degree. Hence, some black residents have been dissuaded from voting, probably Dem.

On the other hand, a lot of black people have “been there, had that done to them”, and aren’t that easy to con, so most likely the effect is pretty minimal. Doesn’t make the intent any less despicable.

Was it the Pubbies? Prolly not. They already have the key advantage, money. Why risk it? It may very well have been some bunch of goons of the extreme right persuasion, but that doesn’t make it the Pubbies.

It looks like a veiled threat, but fake threats are not unknown in politics. I know people who have issued dirt sheets on themselves to stir people up. It could be anyone.

As a non-American, could you tell me which (if any) of the things on the list might be a problem turning up vote?

As far as I know, none of them would present a problem. Voting places have a list of registered voters for their district, and match your identification against the list to determine if you are allowed to vote at that location. I don’t believe (though this is a guess) that they have any flags for people who have broken any laws, and there are certainly no “hasn’t paid rent” notations.

They don’t, but if people (i.e. new voters) believe that there are, their poverty and fear will keep them away from the polls altogether.

Fact: the less people who actually vote, the better the Republicans do in their elections.

I think that they will have flags for convicted felons (for non-Americans, a felony is a major crime) because of felony disenfranchisement laws. Misdemeanors, however, do not carry disenfranchisement laws and are thus not tracked by the people operating the polls.

But as far as tickets or unpaid bills, Denise is absolutely right. There are no restrictions or red flags other than felonies (“hey, says here he killed a guy in '72 - he can’t vote”) Shoot, you don’t even need a picture ID such as a drivers license. You can walk up with your power bill (unpaid) and say “I’m this guy”. As long as the address matches what they have on the voting registry they’ll let you vote.

The problem is that there are a lot of poor people who rarely vote, and as a result are unfamiliar with the process or their rights. The tactics described here would discourage such people who do have unpaid tickets, overdue rents, warrants, etc. from going to the polls to begin with.

While I doubt that the Republican Party actually had anything directly to do with spreading these leaflets, I can’t shake the feeling that there’s something very “Donald Segretti” about this.

BTW, for those of you too young to remember Watergate, this is who Donald Segretti was.

Where I vote all they have is a list of names and addresses of registered voters. I write down my full name and address on a piece of paper and they check to see if it is on the list. If it matches I vote. I don’t need ID or anything with my name and address printed on it other then the piece of paper I write it on.

I have never seen anyone arrested while voting. Hell, I haven’t even ever seen any police at the polls.

I doubt that most of the people who would be scared by that flier would bother to vote anyway. Still it is a shame that someone scared them. I doubt it was the Republicans. The cost would far out weigh the gains if they were caught. And, I think it was irresponsible of Slate to “assume” that it was them with out any evidence.

What Elucidator said.

(This is getting weird.)

My educated guess (and that’s all it could be, a guess) is that while one couldn’t rule out a leafleteer with some kind of Republican connection/orientation, the source is more likely to be a non-GOPer trying to stir up black people to vote.

“See, look at this dirty trick designed to keep blacks away from the polls! It’s worse than Florida in 2000! Are we going to let this plot keep us from voting? Turn out and show those #^(^$ we can’t be scared off !!”
People don’t like to be manipulated.

Yeah, just like the Mossad arranged to have those planes hijacked, and used to knock down the World Trade Center towers, just to get us all riled up against the A-rabs.

A bit too “tin-foil-hat” for me, thank you.

Lib, I hope this sometime is just a bad day, and not your true bearing.


—The joke about giving out the wrong date is a very old one. It’s too bad that Chatterbox thinks Blacks are that stupid. And it’s too bad that you failed to point out Chatterbox’s laughable logical fallacy.—

was downright nasty on your part, considering my stated and obvious antipathy to the idea that the Republicans are involved. Maybe that december reference was too obscure, but still.

Likewise, though Chatterbox is exactly as reliable as it sounds, your veiled insinuation of racism is likewise dispicable. Careful: you might make Jesse Ventura’s wife cry.

Wonder if these are dirty tricks, too?

According to Drudge:

From The Washington Post:

So, to recap, voters will simply be instructed not to pay attention to the big, not-even-subliminal word DEMOCRAT at the tops of their ballots. Much in the same way jurors should disregard that statement that was just said and is now in their heads.

Or this:

Let’s see … election deadlines no longer matter (Bush-Gore), primary elections no longer matter (Torricelli). Why doesn’t the Democratic Party simply file a block number of votes for itself, instead of going through the motions of walking people who don’t know how to vote for themselves, lifting their hand and putting it on the correct lever?

Seriously, what ever happened to making an X on a piece of paper? The way to make elections run smoother is to simplify them, not clutter them up with electronics (and I’m a technofile).


I didn’t (and still don’t) grasp the December reference, but I’ll take your word for it. Sorry for jumping, but I am glad you cleared it up.

Now, Milossarian, there’s no reason to be partisan about it. We don’t want to go into those overseas absentee ballots again, do we? No. There are plenty of election-stealing scum on either side of this nightmare.

In the spirit of reconcilliation on this day when Americans pretend they have some control over their country, here’s some good old bipartisan scummery:

Using soft money to fund recounts.

Giant individual donations, giant corporate donations, and “safe” candidates funding other candidates’ campaigns.

Yep, we’d toss 'em all out on their asses if there weren’t a second, third, and fourth string ready to take the field. So good luck to all of you and get to those polls!

Don’t believe everything you read, Milo. From a later story in the same paper about the Mass. election:

Good to know you’re still so utterly predictable, though.