When I saw the headline Bevin Says He Lost Because Democrats ‘Harvested Votes In Urban Communities’ I knew I had to see what he actually said. Because surely, there must be more to the quote, right? Surely he was actually talking about voter fraud, not, well, voting.
Um. Nope. It’s actually worse.
Bevin lost to Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear last month by a little more than 5,000 votes.
During an interview on 55KRC in Cincinnati, Bevin said that the election was a “surprise” that defies logic.
“The left, those who think of a different ideological bent, they are getting so good at harvesting votes in the urban communities,” Bevin said.
“They were able to go into urban communities where people are densely populated on college campuses and public housing projects.”
Bevin has repeatedly questioned the outcome of the election, suggesting — without evidence — that voter fraud took place.
How dare people on college campuses or in public housing projects vote! How dare they!
What. The. Heck.
Now, we do need to talk about “vote harvesting,” because it’s an actual, very specific thing:
Vote harvesting refers to collecting absentee or mail-in ballots in order to sway an election. The practice is illegal in some states, but Kentucky is one of 27 states that allows absentee ballots to be returned by a designated agents.
I’m not happy with the term “vote harvesting.” It sounds sketchy. Look, I grew up in a state that allowed this, and all it meant was that people would go to nursing homes, etc., and drop off and collect absentee ballots to turn in. Not an issue. Not weird at all.
In theory, yes, someone could fill out a bunch of absentee ballots and submit them in other people’s names, but that’s not even what Bevin is alleging. That would mean doing things like forging people’s signatures, and that’s something that could be analyzed and identified. Bevin hasn’t asked for—or alleged—anything like this. He’s appears to be upset about “vote harvesting” period.
How dare anyone make it easier for college students and people living in public housing complexes to vote. Seriously, do Republicans even believe in voting anymore?
‘You can’t impeach the president now, it would deprive the people of the right to vote!’ they insist. ‘But don’t put voting stations on college campuses or let people take absentee ballots to public housing complexes!’ they go on. ‘And definitely don’t let the 10% of American citizens who don’t have a government-issued photo ID to vote, that would be a travesty!’ Say what now? Which is it?
Oh, but we’re not done with Bevin yet:
During the interview on 55KRC, Bevin said that he was encouraged by his supporters on Election Day, but that Democrats brought “more less-informed people” to the polls.
“Conservatives are going to have to find some counterpoint,” Bevin said. “The harvesting of votes in urban cores in particular that is done by the left overwhelmed even that. And that’s the difference, that’s the tipping point.”
“Less-informed people”? What, does he want to require people to take a civics exam in order to vote? Hmm, when have I heard of that before. Oh wait. That’s right. That’s how white people kept black people in the South from voting for nearly a century. Trumped up ridiculous literacy tests.
For the record, the U.S. Constitution does not say people have to be informed to vote. Also for the record, watching Fox News and listening to Rush Limbaugh does not make one “informed.”
Bevin says that “conservatives are going to have to find some counterpoint” to “the harvesting of votes in urban cores.” You know what? I have an idea. How about finding a way to make more people want to vote for you? Because that’s the point of voting, right? If your agenda and your record is turning people off, fix that. Maybe, I don’t know, stop attacking teachers.
I’m looking at you, Bevin.
This idea that the solution to losing at the polls isn’t to adopt policies that appeal to more voters or take actions that demonstrate that you are a good person, but rather to find ways to stop people who don’t like you from voting, flies in the face of the entire premise and purpose of our system.
The whole point is that people voters don’t like don’t get elected.
Also, stop talking about people in “urban cores” as though they’re some sort of different species, or somehow not human. That’s insulting. Who came up with this idea that only small-town and rural residents are True Americans? I live in a city, and my vote matters now just as much as it did when I lived in a town, and just as much as it did when I lived in an unincorporated area.
I didn’t change. I am still a human, a person, and a U.S. citizen. All that changed was my address. And somehow that means my vote should be discounted? God forbid people in cities vote!
I’m not convinced Republicans even believe in voting anymore. They sure don’t act like they do.
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