Mexico’s Deadly Elections


Mexico coppers patrolling neighborhoods at election time
Luis Antonio Rojas/Washington Post

Mexico is in the final days of one of its most violent electoral campaigns in modern times. Eighty-nine politicians have been killed since September, according to the security consulting firm Etellekt. Scores more have been wounded or threatened. The campaign has become a stark illustration of crime organizations’ quest to expand their control of Mexico’s territory, a rising threat to this young democracy…

Crime groups that once concentrated on exporting drugs to the United States have diversified into extortion, kidnapping and narcotics sales. A U.S.-backed effort to decapitate big cartels caused them to splinter into competing bands. Heroin producers sought additional routes, to respond to a growing American appetite for the drug and to evade federal authorities…

RTFA. The details make the days of Al Capone in Chicago seem like a summer festival.

Protect our elections against the pandemic

At least seven states have postponed their presidential primaries in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

That has raised concerns about the other states that have state elections and federal primary elections planned for later this summer – and of course the general election in November.

The main concern, in terms of the pandemic, is that elections cause people to congregate at the polling places on Election Day. If it’s not safe to be within six feet of someone outside your immediate family, it’s seems ill-advised to line up with all your neighbors to check in, or to visit a small voting booth someone else was just in, or to pick up the same pen or touch the same touchscreen they used just moments ago…

To hold elections without delays, the obvious solution is to let people vote elsewhere, at other times.

RTFA. Useful, easy to accomplish suggestions. The difficulty will be the fumble-fingers Congress.

Many of the pimps for Trump – no surprise – simply call for the presidential election to be canceled. Get round to it sometime that seems easier on the Fake President.

Down to 2 old white guys, again


Since 2010, 54 women came to power as prime ministers, presidents or chancellors…

Estonia, Singapore, Ethiopia and Finland – these are some of the 21 countries currently governed by a female president or prime minister…Yet a woman president of the U.S. still remains only a hypothetical.

The 2020 Democratic nomination contest originally featured six women candidates, a record number. But the most prominent female candidates for the Democratic nomination – Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar – have all dropped out, and the focus of the race has narrowed to two males.

[This] research examines what countries where women run the government have in common – and why the U.S. still lags behind.

Same as it ever was. Not even any new lies to supplant all the old rationales.

Austria election: far-Right populists crash-and-burn / Green Party triples their best result

❝ Support for Austria’s Freedom party (FPÖ) has plunged by more than a third as voters punished the far-right group in national elections for a corruption scandal that brought down the government.

❝ The former chancellor Sebastian Kurz, 33, looks certain to reclaim his position as the youngest leader in the world after his conservative People’s party (ÖVP) secured 37.1% of the vote – its best result since 2002.

The Green party was the other big winner on Sunday, achieving its best result at national elections with 14%. The centre-left Social Democratic party (SPÖ) plummeted to a historically low 21.7% but was still the second-biggest party.

Questions about coalitions are not terribly unique – once you get outside the United States. Though we’ve had decades of cornball [and effective] brainwashing about the so-called benefits of 2-party politics, I see no reason to make excuses for the one-size-fits-all approach to electoral politics.

Republican Hypocrisy illustrates the difference between lies and damned lies

Craptastic Congressional Republicans [and Democrats] never got too upset over illegal wiretaps by the FBI during Resistance to the VietNam War. Even my mom got a $1000 settlement in court. They tapped her phone just in case I phoned Hanoi when I stopped by for Sunday dinner.

Nowadays, the courts rollover and the GOP is pissed-off that their phoniest hero might be caught on tape.

Former DOJ officials file brief against Trump’s attempt to deny voting rights policy


You got what you thought you voted against — and worse!

❝ The Justice Department’s recent about-face on a voting rights case was such a betrayal of long-standing DOJ policy that a group of former political appointees and career lawyers filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court on Friday, citing more than two decades of consistent enforcement of the rule in question – until Trump.

In a possibly unprecedented move, the former Justice lawyers essentially made an argument on behalf of the Department as an institution, representing itself in opposition to its current leadership…

❝ At issue is an Ohio law that calls for purging voters from the registration rolls if they fail to vote during three election cycles then don’t respond to a mailing. The American Civil Liberties Union sued in April 2016 to prevent the state from purging potentially hundreds of thousands of registrations before the presidential election…

Historically, the Justice Department has explained to states that the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) very clearly prohibits them from removing people from the rolls simply for not voting. (There are, after all, a lot of reasons someone may choose not to vote.)

Not like we never face the situation where the only choices are between two mediocrities or worse. The Trump Republican presumption is that we should lose our right to vote if we reject “too many” opportunities.

I think they just don’t want to have folks around who recognize crap choices for what they are.