Republican legislators have long worked to restrict the nation's voting pool to religious zealots that promote theocracy and fiscal conservatives who lick the boots of our corporate overlords. Any position which nurtures progress (except for those laws benefiting the wealthy) is anathema to the Greedy Old Party (GOP). Take my home state of Texas. Please.
From Think Progress: Despite facing a $10-11 billion budget shortfall, Governor Rick Perry prioritized a voter ID bill as an "emergency item" last month — forcing the Texas legislature to act on the bill before dealing with the state's budget crisis. Since then the Senate has passed a voter ID law that would be the most restrictive in the nation and almost certainly depress turnout among low-income Texans. That shift could make all the difference in a state where in the past seven years, more than half a dozen state house races have been decided by less than fifty votes. The bill is now being considered by the Republican-controlled House and is widely expected to pass the lower chamber.
The Lone Star State isn't alone in this electoral perfidy. Brad Friedman writes on Brad Blog: What do GOP superstar Ann Coulter, the head of the GOP's California voter registration firm Mark Anthony Jacoby, and, as of yesterday, Indiana's newly elected GOP Secretary of State Charlie White all have in common? Unlike the four-decades old community organization ACORN, each of these Republicans appear to have committed voter fraud and/or voter registration fraud. Coulter's well-documented acts of voter fraud and voter registration fraud took place in 2005 in Palm Beach County, FL, and were preceded by likely acts of voter fraud in Connecticut in 2002 and 2004 as well. Jacoby's voter registration fraud in CA led to his 2008 arrest and subsequent guilty plea. And now White, the new chief election official in IN, the state with one of the most draconian voter suppression polling-place Photo ID restriction laws in the nation (along with Texas, where election day intimidation is as popular as harassing gays) has been charged with three counts of voter fraud as well as additional counts of perjury, financial institution fraud, and theft, just two months after being sworn in last January, for having lied about his address when he voted in last year's GOP primary.
Wisconsin, North and South Carolina, Kansas, Tennessee, Minnesota, Missouri, Colorado... the list goes on and on. GOP operatives understand that they're not always able to win campaigns fairly (George W. Bush being the perfect storm of stolen elections) - so they feel compelled to manipulate the system to their advantage. By appealing to the numerous conspiracy nuts among Tea Party "patriots," the avarice of so-called "gay conservatives," and the religious fervor of homophobic racial minorities, Republicans scrounge up votes from otherwise disenfranchised taxpayers - Americans who continue, stubbornly, to cast ballots against their own best interests. (Fear does that to normally sane individuals - and GOPers know a thing or two about spreading fear.) Unfortunately, these numbers aren't solid enough to carry the day - and with each passing year the duped disciples dwindle. This is why GOP lawmakers expend so much time and energy gerrymandering and placing obstacles between liberals and the voting booth.
Republican politicians tend to be hypocrites and cheaters - not to put too fine a point on it. With Holy Bibles stuffed in their coat pockets, they spout "family values" while cheating on their spouses; they deceive loyal constituents by passing legislation that damages the financial prospects of the middle-class; and of course they lie like rugs to the media. The single American institution that should be sacrosanct to us - our cherished right to vote - is being treated like a toilet by conservative stratagists. To GOPers, winning justifies any slight-of-hand means at their disposal.