May 4, 2014

Wisconsin Republicans: Oh, We Want to Diversify Our Party

Stop voting and quit trying to pass your
selves off as real Americans, says GOP.
Get the message.
Justice Anthony Kennedy remarked in orals of Shelby that “it’s not clear to me that there’s that much difference” between Section 2 and Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act

"Conscious of the challenges their overwhelmingly white party faces in an increasingly multiracial country and state, at its party convention Saturday, Republican leaders emphasized the importance of reaching out to minority communities," writes Jack Craver of the Capital Times, reporting from the Wisconsin GOP convention this weekend.

Republicans are funny, known for their sense of irony.

The Republican electoral strategy remains disenfranchising African-Americans and Latinos—efforts thwarted by the Wisconsin Constitution, the United States Constitution, and Voting Rights Act— and as always using white resentment of minorities, as a piece in today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel by Craig Gilbert demonstrates anew that the artifacts and reality of white flight and housing discrimination remain staggering in the metropolitan Milwaukee area.

Meanwhile Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-White People) continues his push for the Voting Rights Act Amendment (HR 3899), an attempt to codify unconstitutional state voter obstruction laws, and creating a new voter obstruction formula to replace the 2006 formula protecting voters from racist states and municipalities, that was decimated by Shelby County v. Holder.

This is because Republicans want equality and not discrimination, Justice Roberts assures us.

Sensenbrenner who like Roberts deceitfully pretends to champion voter rights and equality—even calling Wisconsin's restrictive Voter ID law "common sense"—co-authors HR 3899 offering states four free voter obstruction laws (as found by federal courts) before a political jurisdiction would be subject to a preclearance regime by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Sensenbrenner even let on at a public listening session that he's gaming HR 3899 so that a horribly restrictive voting bill in the Voting Rights Act Amendment, contrary to the VRA's very rationale, can be used as a wedge issue between President Obama and the civil rights community.

Even Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act remains in jeopardy as long as the five members of the Roberts bloc remain on the Court. At oral arguments, Justice Anthony Kennedy remarked in orals of Shelby that “it’s not clear to me that there’s that much difference” between Section 2 and Section 5.

The first thing that needs to happen is to kill HR 3899.

But the civil rights community and House Democrats are so desperate to appear to do something about Shelby that they'll settle for passing voter obstruction.

This is what years in Washington will do, when the civil rights community atrophies: GroupThink and StupidThink in Washington take over.

Do Democrats and major civil rights groups really believe Republicans will allow a fix to the Voting Rights Act to pass?

Do they similarly believe Republicans will pass amended pro-voting rights legislation in light of the fact that the political right has spent so many years fighting voting rights?

Some call this magical thinking. I call it stupidity.

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