Thursday, September 22, 2011

Oh Charlie, the only fraud here is you!

I'm not sure if you've all gotten the memo yet, but voter fraud is rampant in Maine.   It's most prevalent on college campuses.  Those darn kids are always messing things up.  We just want to make sure informed people vote, why do those silly kids always think they know everything?  See, it was different when I was in college, I knew about all the issues, and was able to vote because I fit into all the required criteria.  Not like today, when kids just play Playstation and watch Family Guy.  They have no idea what is going on around them.  It's simply awful that we still allow them to disenfranchise the local townspeople by voting.  I mean, that's what Charlie Webster, head of the Maine Republican Party says, so it must be correct, right?

Actually, voter fraud is anything but rampant in Maine.  This whole game that Mr. Webster has been playing this summer has been a farce, and we all knew it.  Heck, even those that supported Webster knew, deep down, that he was full of crap.  As I'm sure you remember, Charlie came out earlier this summer with his list of 206 names of out of state college students that he felt committed fraud (here's a link to the press conference if you haven't seen it).  He handed his list of "offenders" off to the Maine Secretary of State, Charlie Summers, and just yesterday, Summers came back with the results of his research.  After two months, and much digging and prodding, it turns out, not a single one of the students on the list had committed any type of fraud.  See, the problem for Webster, and the Republicans that believe there is massive amounts of fraud going on here, is that college students aren't the problem.  In fact, there isn't a problem at all.  The elimination of Same Day Registration by the Maine Legislature was a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. 

See, college students were the targets of Webster's attack.  They have every right, by law, to vote where they go to school.  They voted once, in the town that they live in, just as college students have done for years, and will continue to do for years to come.  The real issue, as far as I can tell, is that Webster, and I'm sure others too, don't like that college students have the ability to possibly sway an election, and the perception is that college students tend to lean to the left.  It's pretty clear to me that this scares our friend Charlie Webster.  So, instead of engaging college students in a positive manner, he accuses them of cheating.  I'm not sure that will go very far to convincing them to support the Republican's agenda.  In fact, I wouldn't be surprised to see college students come out, in droves, to vote this November, especially for Question 1, which looks to reinstate same day voter registration. 

In the end, I'm glad Secretary of State Summers looked into potential fraud.  It proves that there was no funny business going on, and that our town officials are doing their jobs.  It proves that our system works, despite the cries of many on the right.  It also should put an end to this nonsense about college students and voting.  We want to encourage everyone to vote, to be involved in their community, and to be a part of something bigger than themselves.  We especially want college students to feel that way, as we want them to stay after graduation and contribute to Maine's economy by living, working and playing here.  I am proud that Maine has one of the highest voter turnouts in the country, and hope to see that continue.  I want to thank all of our town officials for all the hard work they do, and I want to encourage everyone to get out and vote on Question 1 on November 8 to reinstate same day voter registration.  I'm just saying...