vote early and often

Destroying Democracy Thirty-Five Days Early: Ohio Voting Edition

dayton prideWho’s got two thumbs and voted yesterday? THIS GUY.

Ohio allows early voting (sort of maybe if the Secretary of State allows it?) thirty-five days before the election. Because I am a shameless political hack, I knew exactly who I was voting for when the 2012 presidential race began in 2009. (Mitt Romney, obviously.)

I voted in Dayton, which Lewis Black once called “Detroit’s little brother.” That is unfair, because Detroit is kind of awesome and has Miguel Cabrera, and Dayton is the birthplace of the Incredible Hulk. Well, Bruce Banner; the Hulk was borne out of Banner’s psychological trauma and exposure to a massive dose of gamma radiation, which kind of happened in multiple places but mainly New Mexico.

I did not vote in New Mexico. Yet.

The early voting process was incredibly smooth, and remarkably social. Mainly, this was because 80-90% of the people who showed up were black, with their Democratic Party sample ballots, so for the most part people just had to point out the motherfuckers they were voting against to friends and family.

Let me tell you something: elderly black women have the best reasons for hating Republicans. And white people generally. I could just listen to them for hours.

The main thing you overheard at the Board of Elections wasn’t necessarily excitement about voting. It was anger about perceived efforts to suppress the vote. Well, that and black people talking to each other in weird Obama-style black voices, like they all wanted to be in a Daily Caller exposé in five years. And they do.

There are some who would say that early voting damages democracy because it allows people to vote before all the information is in, which is a really, terribly stupid argument for people who choose to vote early. If you know the people for whom you are voting (and most people do at this point, because American elections take slightly longer than the entire evolution of mankind from a single-celled organism), and/or don’t care about the rest of the races – uncontested county coroner races demand contemplation! – then early voting is a way of administering a system that otherwise has the potential to get overloaded and is often inconvenient for voters otherwise. If you really don’t feel like you have the information or knowledge necessary to vote early, nobody’s holding a gun to anyone else’s head.

Well, except the New Black Panther Party. But it’s actually just a lighter they found at a thrift store. And it doesn’t work.

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143 comments

  1. vulpes82

    But weren't you DEATHLY AFRAID being around all of those UPPITY NEGROES?!??? Their JIVE TALK might have infected you!

    1. PsycWench

      Myself, I would have followed them to wherever they were eating. Give me collards over mayonnaise any day.

      1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

        But you can still use mayo on your pork chop sammitch to feel white amongst all the unfettered blackness. Funnily enough the best soul food I've ever had was in Cheyenne fucking Wyoming. I mean, I haven't been far enough South to get really good soulfood but this place being where it was shocked the shit out of our sales delegation. Not only was it soulfood, the proprietor himself was BLACK…in Cheyenne fucking Wyoming. One of our group a young black guy from Mississippi made a joke like "truck got stuck on the way to Lousianna and you just moved in, right?" the owner thought that was funny…I think. Anyway, wierdest location I've ever found good soulfood in my life.

    1. vulpes82

      Isn't someone supposed to jump in and babble something about us being a "Constitutional Republic," not a democracy here? Well, if so, here it is: WE'RE NOT A DEMOCRACY, WE'RE A CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC!!11!!

    2. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      Oligarchy, plutocracy, propagandacracy (I just coined that one in honor of Faux Nuuz), Dimocracy (for the teabaggers) and of course, Oilagarchy when Texans are in charge. It really chaps the asses of teabaggin' shitheels that we vote by mail here in Oregon…which is yet another reason why I wholeheartedly support the system. Makes election day a breeze…which is why it will NEVER exist in any swing state so long as Republicans are alive and kicking…

    1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      I know…and what's even more surprising is not a single person told the poll lady "get me ma mothafuckin' ballot, bitch" causing Bill O'Reilly to suffer a stroke from all the cognitive dissonance flooding his brain at once. It's okay though, Republicans have a contingency for such an emergency: they make Herman Caine and Allen West read the script for "Menace 2 Society"…snaps 'em right back into the correct stereotypes.

  2. Ruhe

    …"weird Obama-style black voices"… is there an app for that on the iPhone 5? That would be the tipping point for me.

  3. Chow Yun Flat

    Let me tell you something: elderly black women have the best reasons for hating Republicans. And white people generally.

    Or as Chris Rock said about Rev. Wright: Of course a 70 year old black man hates whites. Half his first grade class has been lynched.

    1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      Hah yeah no shit, right? I mean the guy is 70…he probably has all sorts of colorful stories about being treated like a second class citizen (he once again was indulged in such a treatment in 2008 by Faux Nuuz, the very network that defended Jerry Falwell's "blame liberals for 9/11" thing) and watching the permanent cycle of poverty, lack of opportunity, deliberately failing education and crime that permeates so many "black" neighborhoods. I mean this is a meritocracy after all, so long as you have the merits of being born white and wealthy you're good to go.

    1. docterry6973

      No such think as early voting in PA. And if your boss won't let you vote during the day, you are SOL because the polls open late and close early. Can't make it easy for wage earners to vote, you know. For them it is a privilege, not a right.

    1. eggsacklywright

      Best teacher I ever had, Miss Shaw in jr high. Her signature line was, "very good, very good."

      1. JaceWyatt

        I bet her name was Mamie Jenkins. She lived across town and took two buses and walked three miles to get to your house. You'd come home from your Prep school feeling sad cause a Mitt Romney-esque fellow ruffled your hair cause your fey manners and with no one else in your life to tell you they love you, Mamie would bring you into her sweet smelling bosom and say "der, der Momma loves her some DCBloom."

        1. DCBloom

          Ha! I wish.. we were poor, no prep school for us. It wasn't at all like that. Our babysitter lived nearby….no buses or long walks. Although, mom wasn't particularly maternal, so I guess you hit one cliche right. She did know how to lavish some love on us kids.

  4. BaldarTFlagass

    So, is the Republican "Late Voting" campaign in heavy Dem areas having any effect on turnout?

  5. Crank_Tango

    Good job voting! Keep it up!

    I can't wait until I get all my ballots in the mail…I figure I will go Barry Barry Barry, Gary Johnson, Barry, Barry, Barry, Gary, and then a Mitt one but I will smear that one with feces.

    1. BaldarTFlagass

      "a Mitt one but I will smear that one with feces."

      It will probably be that way when it arrives.

    2. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      You don't want to do that…it'll somehow get validated. Remember, this is the party of teabaggers, Chuck Norris, Kirk Cameron, Donald Trump, that douchecanoe Dave Mustaine and of course, Kiss. They'll just mistake your ballet for one cast by shit smearer Ted Nugent and give you credit. No the best way to do it is to fold a page from "the Origin of Species" in with the ballot, or quote n' cite in one of the write-in spaces…they'll know for sure you're just a jokey libtard because wingnuts would literally melt in the places where skin came into contact with Darwin.

  6. Come here a minute

    As Gore Vidal said, "Fifty percent of people won't vote, and fifty percent don't read newspapers. I hope it's the same fifty percent." Only now probably more like ninety percent read neither newspapers nor their web facsimiles. At least there's TV! But how could you vote without hearing the ZINGERS tonight?

  7. hagajim

    Yeah voting early damages Democracy…you mean like unlimited expenditures by corporations doesn't? I vote early – and often (not really Tucker) – so I can just ignore all the stupid bullshit, which BTW, doesn't actually provide you with any education, just miseducation.

    1. eggsacklywright

      And look at all the money those corporations are having to spend to purchase the election. They should get a tax deduction for that.

    1. herecomedajudge

      if the Hulk were white, silver haired, wore glasses, and in a walker or a laz-e-boy in front of the teevee, THEN, I could see the resemblance.

    1. ufr980

      Which reminds me of the joke:

      Why did the Wright Brothers invent the airplane?

      So they could get the fuck out of Dayton.

  8. freakishlywrong

    There are some who would say that early voting damages democracy
    There are also some who would say that voter suppression/manipulation damages democracy as well..

    1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      Give credit where credit is due….Boss Tweed coined the phrase "vote early and often" (I think). Daley was a fuckin' amatuer compared to that giant pile of Democracy and graft. There was also Nookie Johnson who did TWO stints for corruption but only lost his power after the 2nd time.

  9. memzilla

    I took my 2008 Democracy in to the mechanic, because it was running rough. I thought that early voting might have been the cause. Turns out it was just some wingnuts got loose and were choking off the fuel supply.

  10. Gorillionaire

    When I early voted in 2008, I had Stevie Wonder's "Signed Sealed Delivered" cued up on the truck CD player and played it over and over in the parking lot for about ten minutes and it was like a party. Some of those old folks have some damn fine dance moves and are not at all ashamed to show them off in a rec center parking lot.

  11. BaldarTFlagass

    I "get" to go to Darkest Ohio/Dayton/Wright Patterson AFB every three months or so. I know why Bruce Banner got so pissed about being there. They've got a Mad River there; I guess it's pissed because it has to go to Dayton. The Wright Bros invented the airplane in order to get the hell out of Dayton. Cadillac Jack's in Huber Heights is my favorite bar. I hope the people you voted for all win, Jesse, to make up a little bit for your having to live in Dayton..

  12. freakishlywrong

    You know what chaps my ass the most though? These fucking wingnuts have already tainted the election, regardless of outcome. All this talk of "fraud", (by Republicans) and changing the rules and bullshit, no one is going to think who ever wins is clean. Republicans will cheat, or we'll be cheated on and accused of fraud. Fuckers.

    1. Biel_ze_Bubba

      All this talk of "fraud", (by Republicans) and changing the rules and bullshit, no one is going to think who ever wins is clean.

      fify

    2. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      Republicans will already automatically reject Barry winning because of ACORN and black people. If Mitt Romney cheats (by somehow stopping 70 million votes from being counted) they'll call it the "least corrupt" and "most transparent" election ever…everyone else either knows they are fucking lying imbeciles or doesn't give a fuck about their whinning, anyway.

  13. Estproph

    There are also some who say that voting by non-republicans damages democracy. They are republicans.

  14. KeepFnThatChicken

    I am just ready for the 2016 Republican Presidential campaign to begin on November 7th. Because, as we have seen after Barack's election in 2008, that's what they started working on immediately.

  15. FlownOver

    Good thing I saw the article in the Dacron Republican-Democrat about an election coming up. I mean, why don't they ever say anything about elections on my teevee shows? Surely that nice Mr. Sajak knows about it.

  16. SorosBot

    But, if they make voting too convenient, then more people will vote, and that's a bad thing because – actually I have yet to hear a wingnut argument that even came close to hiding that they really think it's because it makes it easier for poor black people to vote.

      1. SorosBot

        Yes, and that is such a huge difference it's very important to note and not at all just something smug dumb Randroids like to say to make themselves sound smart.

  17. Mumbletypeg

    The musculature on that green man, while overexaggerated for artistry's sake, has me wishing I lived in Connecticut so I could vote for this lady. Except I think I would like her when she's angry — this kind of comedy-of-the-absurd hasn't had the same toss around the ring like it used to.

    1. walterhwhite

      I'm just happy that Chris Shays (R) lost the primary. He's a relative of mine by marriage and I will never forgive him for telling Eric Prince (Blackwater) that his organization had done a "perfect" job, just after they murdered 17 Iraqi civilians. What a douche.

  18. Generation[redacted]

    There are some who would say that early voting damages democracy because it allows people to vote before all the information is in

    Perhaps they could address this danger to democracy by administering a civics test at the polling booth (for example "Name the three branches of government" (for whites) or "Name twelve founding fathers and their birthdays" (for blahs)), and those who didn't pass the test would be asked to go home and study the issues before voting.

    1. BerkeleyBear

      You made the white question way too hard – it has to be multiple choice and open cheat sheet or a huge number will fail. Although based on historical uses, your minority test question is just about right.

  19. mrblifil

    Today I am instituting my "Vote Early, Vote Nude" PSA splash. I think it's going to ramp up enthusiasm in a way that's not yet been tried.

  20. SayItWithWookies

    I voted early in 2008 and realized why it's such a necessity — because I think every hundred-year-old black person in the city was there and waiting in line, and if they only had one day to vote I doubt half of them would've been able to. Most of them thought they'd never see the day, either — it still gets me slightly weepy when I think about it.

    1. ThundercatHo

      In 2008 we lived in Hanover county and had to go up to the courthouse and lie to some frazzled clerk about why we needed to vote early. Do they still have that policy?

      1. SayItWithWookies

        I think we had to check some form that had various reasons for voting early on it — but one of the election workers just told everybody to check the box that said they were going to be out of town. As far as they were concerned, the reason was just a formality. But that was Richmond and every locality does it differently as far as I can tell.

  21. Callyson

    Can't wait until I get my ballot in the mail (though I've got a couple of initiatives I'm still undecided on.) That way, I can spend Election Day driving some of those elderly black women to the polls…

  22. Texan_Bulldog

    I'm going to early vote but it's hard to get excited about it since I know the ballot box will end up in the trunk of some oldster's (since they are the poll volunteers) Buick only to be found after they have died & the kids are trying to sell the car. And, plus, TX votes don't count unless they are in the R column.

  23. StealthMuslin

    "Remember citizens: The earlier you cast your ballots the more time the Ohio Secretary of State has to misplace them!"
    Oops. Did we say that out loud?
    fuck…

  24. calliecallie

    "…American elections take slightly longer than the entire evolution of mankind from a single-celled organism…"

    I say we start limiting the campaign season to 9 months. It really should not take the electorate longer to review the candidates, nominate some, and then pick a president than its takes a woman to gestate and birth a child.

    1. BaldarTFlagass

      Hey, there wouldn't be any rock and roll hoochie-koo, or any Sloopy to hang on to, if it weren't for Rick Derringer.

  25. BigSkullF*ckingDog

    I think we should let the supreme court name out president again. Look how well that worked the last time!

  26. BaldarTFlagass

    How come the Hulk's shirt always shreds and disappears when Banner transforms, but his pants stretch out to accomodate his increased bulk? I have wondered about this since about 1967.

    1. SorosBot

      Unstable molecules.

      No really, they're also why Mr. Fantastic's suit stretches with him, and the Human Torch doesn't burn himself naked every time he flames on.

  27. ElPinche

    Dayton is the reason not to nuke Ohio from orbit (I'm from Texass so there's a nuke queue for us).

    1. ThundercatHo

      Only cuz Jesse is there, plus when they start nuking Ohio cities they'll (hopefully) start with Toledo.

  28. Biel_ze_Bubba

    The Rethugs are behind in the polls, ergo early voting is a bad thing. Pretty straightforward thinking, IMO.

  29. ElPinche

    Let me tell ya, I have an "inner elderly black woman" named "Aunt Regina." I have overwhelming fantasies of smashing Tucker Carlson into a bag of shattered bones like the Hulk did to Loki.

  30. Chet Kincaid_

    "Let me tell you something: elderly black women have the best reasons for hating Republicans. And white people generally. I could just listen to them for hours."

    For example, my Mother, born in Georgia in 1918 and raised Down South, was taught at an early age that a negro woman should do everything she can to avoid ending up alone in a room with a white man.

    1. An_Outhouse

      If you're a candidate with houses in more than one state then you have to divide your total number of votes by the number of states, too. Also.

  31. Peckerwood_Pete

    Who in their right mind would be excited about voting, given the 2 choices we have?

    Talking points aside, if you were basing your voting decision on their record alone, you wouldn't have a clue who the Democrat was, and who the Republican was, if they didn't have a "D" or "R" next to their name.

    1. meepmeep09

      A very good way to introduce Jesse – particularly within the context of this post – would be to include a link to his Pandagon post that was inspired by the murder of Trayvon Martin, "A Young Black Man, Being Late": http://pandagon.net/index.php/site/comments/a-you

      That account will reach a lot of folks – those who are reachable, at least – who are blessed with membership in the melanin-deficient Lucky Pigmentation Club. It certainly made an impression on this former Dayton boy.

  32. anniegetyerfun

    The main thing you overheard at the Board of Elections wasn’t necessarily excitement about voting. It was anger about perceived efforts to suppress the vote. Well, that and black people talking to each other in weird Obama-style black voices, like they all wanted to be in a Daily Caller exposé in five years. And they do.

    Ten bucks says that this paragraph turns up on dead Breitbart's website in five years as proof that liberals are the real racists.

  33. ThundercatHo

    Jesse, we're having an Obama debate watch party tonight. C'mon up, it's not that far. Our very cute, enthusiastic and young campaign intern actually managed to find other democrats in my area. Who knew?

  34. SpeedoFart

    Seriously, fuck NY. I could have been one of the cool kids voting a month ahead of time when the weather is still nice and I'm still childless, but nooooooooooo. Come November, I'm gonna have to trudge through 8 feet of snow with an infant strapped to my chest to fill in little Scan-Tron dots in the stuffy rec room of the closest church.

    Fuckers.

  35. ttommyunger

    Sheeeeet! I hand-delivered my Absentee Ballot today. Considering I live in the Reddest County in one of the Reddest States, I may as well have saved myself the trouble; but at least I know my ballot was marked and cast, which is more than I could say if I'd used the Magic Diebold Box.

  36. Negropolis

    I do't know. I've always seen Dayton as Flint's big brother.

    BTW, we don't have early voting here in Michigan; in fact, we don't even have no-reason absentee, yet. Despite being a fairly blue state at the national level, we haven't had a Dem SoS since the 90's. In fact, the current SoS is being sued in federal court for trying to keep a citizenship checkbox on the ballot, even though the effing Republican governor vetoed some recent voter suppression laws that included the the checkbox. It really just shows how sucky our local Dem Party is that we have the hardest time winning SoS and AG and the Supreme Court.

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