Everybody suspected the Republican Party of intentionally trying to suppress voter turnout in the hopes of defeating President Barack Obama.
Now we have two former GOP insiders confirming as much.
Former Florida Governor Charlie Crist and former state party head Jim Greer confessed their party’s concerted efforts to the Palm Beach Post.
The bombshell was the talk on CNN’s “Outfront”, when host Erin Burnett and contributors Roland Martin and Noelle Nikpour mixed it up over the issue.
Not surprisingly, Martin came out swinging.
“For two years I’ve been blasting these efforts in Florida as outright voter suppression, and it is no shock that you’re actually hearing this,” he said. “In a country where you want more people voting, why would you take away a day when people would say, ‘Hey, no need for me to go the polls Tuesday, I can actually vote on that particular Sunday.’ Many of us believe they were targeting those churches that were voting in mass as well.
Nikpour, a Republican strategist, responded by assailing the messengers.
“These allegations that came up that we suppressed votes are coming from an ex-Governor who was a Republican, switched over Independent, is going to run as a Democrat against Rick Scott,” Nikpour said of Crist.
Next she turned her ire against Greer.
“And you’ve got a guy that’s a convicted felon stealing money that’s basically going to say anything,” she said. “There was nobody that sat in any meeting and said ‘We’re trying to suppress minorities and blacks from voting.’ They did this to save money, for the states, for Florida.”
Martin wasn’t buying the excuse, pointing out that Florida’s constant changing rationales for restricting voting days made no sense whatsoever.
The segment continued with Nikpour harking back to the old favorite Republican boogieman, ACORN, and once again defending Florida’s actions as saving money.
What Nikpour failed to explain was why Governor Rick Scott would wait for an election year to take action on restricting voting days and hours rather than doing so years before. It’s obvious that Republican operatives knew their party was fighting a huge demographic shift in favor of Democrats long before the Nov. 6 election results made that painstakingly clear.
But their efforts to take away minority votes actually enraged and emboldened them to come out even more, even enduring long lines to make sure their voices were heard.
That’s what true democracy is supposed to be about.