NSdemocrats claim to be concerned about attacks on the legitimacy of elections. They feign disgust for anyone who wants to investigate the integrity of elections. If they really believe this, they certainly have a funny way of showing it.
The most notable election of 2021 is the Virginia governor’s race. The Democratic nominee is Terry McAuliffe, former Democratic National Committee chairman, former governor and close ally of Bill and Hillary Clinton. McAuliffe spent the years of George W. Bush vociferously claiming that Bush stole his 2000 election. That’s no exaggeration: at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, McAuliffe . said roared to an exuberant crowd on national television: “We won the last presidential election, folks, they stole the last presidential election.” In his 2008 autobiography, he wrote, “I was angry after 2000 because they stole it from us and we let them do it.” In subsequent years, McAuliffe continued to claim that the 2000 election had been stolen. When offered the chance this month to waive that charge, he refused to back down, arguing (uncomfortably) that it was acceptable to call the Bush election “stolen” simply because a trial on the matter Supreme Court reached. To this day, McAuliffe will not admit that George W. Bush was lawfully elected President of the United States.
Worse, when pressed, McAuliffe tried to excuse his stolen election claims by pointing out that he was the party chairman at the time. In other words, he said Bush stole the election because that was his job; it didn’t matter whether he believed it or not. As an admiring John Kerry advisor told the New York Times in 2004: “Terry is a very valuable player. Terry will say anything.”
When left-wing conspiracy theorists claimed that Bush’s 2004 reelection was also stolen—think the Diebold voting machine panic—McAuliffe, as party chairman, knew very well that nothing was amiss. “I would have been willing to fight on for years if I had to — but Kerry’s Ohio people were sure of it,” he wrote in 2008. “We had lost and it was time to move on.”
But in 2004 did he tell the madmen in his party to move on? No, he ordered a “comprehensive inquiry into Ohio electoral practices” to “address the legitimate questions and concerns that have arisen in Ohio,” including “disparities in reported results compared to exit polls, historical data, and reported anomalies within counties and districts and whether the touchscreen machines and tabulation systems were functioning properly.”
“We owe it to voters,” McAuliffe said in December 2004, to “understand what happened” and “to conduct a thorough investigation into several electoral administration issues that arose in the 2004 Ohio state election.” occurred.” To that end, he pledged to “hire a political scientist who is an expert in quantitative analysis; an expert or experts in the design of computer hardware and software systems; an expert in voting systems and machines; an investigator with forensic expertise; and a pollster to survey voters who have cast preliminary ballots and to conduct other original survey research if necessary.” All this to “examine” a state that had George W. Bush by more than 118,000 votes.
McAuliffe left this investigation for the next six months under his successor, Howard Dean. It eventually produced a 200 page report who darkly warned of “Democracy at Risk” and accused that voting machines without a “proper chain of custody” were “a system vulnerable to tampering, covert manipulation and fraud.” But much like the Arizona Republicans’ audit in Maricopa County that ultimately confirmed Joe Biden’s victory, the report had to admit it “find no reliable evidence of actual fraud using these machines in Ohio in 2004.” But that was never the point; making a show of declaring the questions legitimate and investigating them was. In a 2019 appearance in Bill Maher’s HBO show that was resurfaced By the Washington Free BeaconMcAuliffe said he was “extremely concerned” about the integrity of the 2020 election, explaining that as governor he distanced himself from voting machines after investigations showed they were easy to hack. Does anyone doubt that if the party roles had been reversed in 2020, Terry McAuliffe would have pushed through the Maricopa County audit?
Refusing to accept the legitimacy of elections has been a tradition of the Democratic Party for the past 20 years, from Hillary Clinton to Stacey Abrams. Two decades of hearing this has convinced all too many Republicans that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, a sentiment Trump has exploited in his bizarre, ongoing war on the outcome of 2020.
While Trump is clearly in a class of his own, it is wrong for anyone to cynically question legitimate elections. There are many reasons why Terry McAuliffe shouldn’t be Virginia’s next governor. His election veracity is one of them.
Something to consider
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