Dallas Man Votes Despite Obvious I.D. Discrepancy!

Categories: Schutze

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Dallas Observer
It's like the Republicans went all law and order on Twinkies, which was unfair, because we Democrats were only stealing Ding-Dongs.
What a letdown. They allowed me to vote. Yesterday when I walked into the firehouse and plunked down my driver's license and voter registration card, I already had my mental dukes up, waiting for them to mess with me. I was hoping for a fight.

In fact that's why I went. I didn't care about anything that was on the ballot in my precinct yesterday. I'm not in the school trustee district where there was a special election, so all I had to vote for was constitutional amendments. I voted against all of them. I'm against amendments.

All this year the consistent narrative for the Texas voter photo I.D. law has been that photo I.D. is a Republican conspiracy to keep Democrats like me from voting. August personages of the political realm, like Dallas Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, have declared that vote fraud is nonexistent in Texas. They say the whole photo I.D. thing is aimed solely at vote suppression.

That's what I wanted them to do. Suppress me. I wanted to be suppressed so I could express my ire. My vote card has "Sr." after my name, and my driver's license does not. The stories on TV gave me the impression that even if there was only the tiniest discrepancy, double-breasted Republicans would come rushing out from behind the fire trucks and beat me with their putters. But all I got was a shrug and a thumb to the stack of ballots.

Before I went out into the rain to vote I did notice in the paper that Texas Secretary of State John Steen had been in town the day before to give a speech about photo I.D. and that powerful Democrats had barred him from appearing on county property. Quite properly. He was probably here just to shake his putter at me.

But the story said he was here to tell people they would all be allowed to vote, easy, and not to believe the hype. I figured that was probably part of the scam somehow. Fool us into a false sense of normalcy. That way people like me who were itching for a fight would be lulled into doing what we normally do in these off-year elections when it's raining -- not vote. He wasn't going to stop me.

On the other hand, I always get a little shiver when somebody like Eddie Bernice Johnson says there's no such thing as vote fraud in Texas. I seem to remember writing a lot of stories myself about vote fraud in Dallas in the past, mostly in the part of town that falls within Congresswoman Johnson's district. I have a very clear memory of people offering to sell entire boxes of signed but un-voted absentee ballots to candidates, of strangely similar signatures on requests for absentee ballots and large numbers of fishy ballots showing up at the county in the wee final hours of closely fought elections.

Laws were passed after all that, however, and most of that kind of fraud would be hard to pull off now. Had the photo I.D. requirements been in effect back then, they would not have touched the kind of fraud I saw, all of which involved mail-in ballots rather than voters showing up at the polls to vote. In that sense, the congresswoman is right in arguing that photo I.D. is a law without a crime. But does that make it a law without any legitimate reason for being?

The fact is that there was lots of vote fraud in our county a decade ago. I never heard of any of it happening in Republican precincts. I always heard of it in Democratic precincts. If the Republicans got the idea there were some Democrats out there stealing votes, I guess I should plead guilty to helping give them that impression.

So now what? The Republicans have passed a law against stealing Twinkies, and our defense is going to be that we were only stealing Ding-Dongs?

Sanctity of the ballot works two ways, it seems to me. The right to exercise the franchise is sacred, and we ought to do everything we can to enable and encourage people to do it. But if the vote is sacred, then it also seems fair to say it shouldn't be fake. I don't believe there can be fake sacred votes. So is it not also important to do what we can to give everybody a certain comfort level where the legitimacy of the vote is concerned?

Maybe I'm just getting tired of the demonizing that we've all been doing to each other over the last decade. Demons? Really? If nothing else, it's unlikely any of us are really quite that interesting. We've all got our reasons for our reasons. Yesterday I had to show an I.D. in order to vote. Today I still seem to be alive.

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31 comments
terpsez11
terpsez11

this guy ought to be jailed for personal pronoun abuse 

Obummer
Obummer

Yo Bless Your Heart.

observist
observist topcommenter

The new law didn't prevent one politically-aware, well-educated, upper-middle-class, white liberal in East Dallas from voting?  I guess that proves it won't affect anyone at all!    Now we can get back to work on the "literacy" requirement...

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

come on Jim, it was an election with only Constitutional Amendments on the ballot. those poll workers were so happy to have an actual voter at the precinct casting a ballot they would've let you vote even if you couldn't show your ID, much less if you showed the ID and there were discrepancies!

MaxNoDifference
MaxNoDifference

It looks like Twinkie is missing the bathrobe and the shotgun.

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

Jim, you have correctly split wholesale v retail fraud. The law attacks retail of which there is so little in the walkup scheme as to be negligible.

Catbird
Catbird

"Democrats like me from voting"....more than once for each election.

pak152
pak152

have to laugh at Liberal/progressives who were expecting the great apocalypse and the found only a tempest in a teapot. the greatest outcry about the voter id came from the political party that is most closely identified with voter fraud. wonder why?

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter


You proved Voter ID laws do not disenfranchise or suppress the Dem vote.  

Your side raises hell about a nonexistent problem.

John1073
John1073

If your name is substantially similar on your voter record compared to your ID, you can vote. Even if they aren't, you can sign the affidavit, which is what many people had to do. Schutze, you probably had them darn libruhls working your poll. How dare they allow Jim Schutze Sr. to vote when clearly he could have been Alejandro Sanchez!

unreadablecrap
unreadablecrap

Liberal "progressivism" is a reality-ignoring, fact-denying faith-based cult, just as much as the fundamentalist Christian right-wing republicans. I spit on you both.

jddallas
jddallas

feelin' your pain, bro. my voter id card shows my initials, not my momma given name. took my passaporte and license and was prepared for the cat fight. i didn't even get the shrug as i was waved through to exercise the franchise. just smiles and thanks for voting.

James_the_P3
James_the_P3

That is a lucid, intelligent, well thought-out objection.  Overruled.

doublecheese
doublecheese

This article seemed reasonable.  I may have to re-read it to make sure.

ruddski
ruddski

But Jim, you're not a housebound 90-year-old woman living 600 miles from the nearest state agency and has no transportation, mail service, friends or family. That is the voter Texas is disenfranchising, and her name is Emma

pak152
pak152

@ozonelarryb so what your saying is that we shouldn't do anything about the walkup fraud even though there is plenty of stories going around about how a certain political party is associated with election fraud?

I guess you leave your doors and windows open since you probably haven't been robbed

John1073
John1073

Speaking of nonexistent problems, did anyone try to vote without an ID?

James080
James080 topcommenter

@holmantx  

Well, they have to take a break from abortion sloganeering once and a while.....

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@James_the_P3 

great movie.  gwynne delivered that line perfectly. pesci and tomei were really good together.

pak152
pak152

@ruddski WOW! what part of the state does she live in? when you say state agency are you referring to the hq in Austin or a satellite office?


tdkisok
tdkisok

@ruddski 


If you were Emma you would be bitching and whining like a 12 year who didn't get Lady Gaga tickets.

ruddski
ruddski

Satellite office, waaaay out there.

ruddski
ruddski

I'd be whining like a democrat who was expecting a check in the mail but got a bill instead

dingo
dingo

@tdkisok well that didn't take long.

tdkisok
tdkisok

@ruddski 


You would still bitch about the bill and blame it on a negro.

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