Jens 'n' Frens
Idle thoughts of a relatively libertarian Republican in Cambridge, MA, and whomever he invites. Mostly political.
"A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures." -- Daniel Webster
Monday, January 09, 2012 :::
I wonder whether there would be a way to combine a VoterID case with a campaign finance case. It would be interesting to hear people directly assert that Voter ID laws making it more nearly as hard to vote as to buy drain cleaner are a greater curtailment of Constitutional rights than preventing people from getting together to produce political advertising, or that the interest of democracy in preventing "the appearance of corruption" is more important than protecting people's faith in their votes from actual vote fraud.
I don't know whether these people could be compelled to offer evidence that any actual cases of corruption are linked to the guilty officials supporters' being able to provide the public with information about their opponents; perhaps there are one or two such instances out there, but of course we're focused on "the appearance of corruption", rather than actual corruption; connection to reality is not required to trump the first amendment. This does make one wonder how this "appearance" is established. Do I actually need evidence that allowing the New York Times to write editorials creates an appearance of corruption, or is asserting it enough?
A few weeks ago, the left side of the blogosphere was abuzz over a report that very few people in Wisconsin are convicted of voting while knowing that it it illegal because of their felony status. This was supposed to favor the theory that there isn't a lot of voter fraud over the theory that voter fraud is hard to catch. It wasn't clear to me why it isn't pretty consistent with either theory.