Gen. Colin Powell didn’t pull any punches on Face The Nation today, when he bluntly warned Republicans that their plan to suppress the vote through voter ID laws is going to backfire.
Video via CBS News:
Bob Schieffer asked Powell about the Supreme Court’s gutting of the Voting Rights Act, and the general dropped a fact bomb. Powell said:
The concern I have now is that many states are putting in place procedures and new legislation that in some ways makes it a little harder to vote. You need a photon ID, but you didn’t need a photo ID for decades before so is it really necessary now?
They claim that there’s wide spread abuse and voter fraud, but nothing documents, nothing substantiates that. There isn’t widespread abuse, and so these kinds of procedures that are being put in place to slow the process down, make it likely that fewer Hispanics and African Americans might vote. I think they’re going to backfire, because these people are going to come out do what they have to do in order to vote and I encourage that.
Gen. Powell reminded his fellow Republicans for the millionth time that the country is getting more diverse, and that the minority will be the majority within the next generation. He said that Republicans don’t just need a new message. They need new substance.
Most Republicans view Powell as a traitor to the party because he endorsed President Obama in 2008, but the GOP would be in a lot better shape if they would listen to him.
Powell was exactly right. The Republican efforts to suppress the vote will backfire. People aren’t stupid. They know that the Republican Party is trying to disenfranchise them.
The right’s best chance at making their massive plan to suppress the vote work was their attempt to surprise implement it before the 2012 election. Now that people have had time to plan, this effort will most definitely backfire.
Instead of discouraging voters, Republicans are encouraging them to get out there and do what they have to do in order to protect their vote. There are organizations all across this country that are committed to helping voters get the identification that they need. Attorney General Holder is still fighting to protect voting rights, and recently challenged Texas’s plan to suppress the vote. Democrats have made the right to vote a central issue, and fighting for all Americans nationwide.
Maybe after Republicans get routed again by the Democratic nominee in 2016, they will begin to understand that they can’t suppress their way to the White House.
I’m with Powell on this one. I think the GOP’s suppress the vote scheme is destined to backfire and fail in spectacular fashion.