Voting rights battle

The battle over who gets to vote and how they get to vote is turning nasty. In a recent invitation-only call to Republican state lawmakers, the Associated Press reports, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) urged them to resist Democratic efforts to pass H.R. 1 and expand voting rights “to illegal aliens and child molesters.”

“H.R. 1′s only objective is to ensure that Democrats can never again lose another election, that they will win and maintain control of the House of Representatives and the Senate and of the state legislatures for the next century,” Cruz is said to have told the group organized by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a corporate-backed, conservative group that provides model legislation to state legislators.

Republicans fear heavy voter turnout, it is said, because they have historically done better in low-turnout elections, while Democrats, according to the common wisdom, win when lots of people vote.

If this is true, if this is what Republicans think they have to do to win elections, then democracy is in trouble. What has happened to the idea of crafting policies and positions that will appeal to more people, encouraging them to vote for your side instead of denying people access to the ballot box?

As for characterizing unworthy voters as “child molesters,” Cruz has apparently been paying too much attention to the Q-Anon tropes claiming a massive Democratic child sex ring in the upper echelons of the government.

Free and fair elections should mean neither party is guaranteed a win. They should mean that both parties have a chance to appeal to the voters, and may the better party win. Do Republicans truly believe themselves to be at such a disadvantage in a free election?


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