After Obama’s second inauguration the White House Insider warned us of the administration’s plans. One involved changing the filibuster rules; the second about accusing Republicans of having too much money in politics; and the third about an attempt to change election laws.
Eric Holder’s Justice Department has already demonstrated a disdain for enforcing laws that stop the antics of Black Panthers in intimidating voters. They have signaled that they will try to stop voter ID laws in states (certainly attempted here in Tennessee). Now Obama has given an executive order to establish a presidential commission on election administration.
Read it and weep. Then ask yourself why is he doing this? Because he cares about the integrity of our voting system? More likely he desperately needs to take control in 2014 so he can implement his final solution. He won’t run again (he says), but full power with both houses of Congress in Democrat hands would give him the final powers to “fundamentally transform the United States of America” as he said five days before the 2008 election.
Notice that he appoints the people. There is no congressional input in this at all. That means he can select and reward his cronies – as long as they will do what he wants them to do.
The order claims it is all about efficiency. Since when? Efficiency is just a way to wrap up what you are doing and do it quickly so it doesn’t get caught. Look how far down in the weeds he’s getting; he is talking about the very precinct where you vote. That has been the purview of the state, not the feds. Our state laws determine how we vote. From what this says, Obama wants to take charge of how absentee and provisional ballots are handled.
He also mentions natural disasters. Hurricane Sandy gave him this little extra. But what would determine a natural disaster? If you’re calling the shots, that could be just about anything. A rainy day? Highway access? Financial troubles? None of it sounds too far out to me.
Notice he mentions checking with technical advisers. Would this be his pals who helped him win in 2012? Guys in their basements working for Obama for America or Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg or Google pals could give him information that would help his causes. Plus, they could be rewarded.
The order also says the committee “shall be informed by, and shall strive to avoid duplicating, the efforts of other governmental entities.” You mean like Congress or legislatures who already are handling these matters? Obama wants to exclude them – and thereby you, the voter – from his panel. It also means he’ll need money for more staff. That’s all we need, another group of bureaucrats sucking off the federal teat even after they retire!
He is so focused as to even remember to ask for per diems for his people!
Congress and state legislatures better start thinking about how they can reign him in. Take a look yourself at the order:
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to promote the efficient administration of Federal elections and to improve the experience of all voters, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Establishment. There is established the Presidential Commission on Election Administration (Commission).
Sec. 2. Membership. (a) The Commission shall be composed of not more than nine members appointed by the President. The members shall be drawn from among distinguished individuals with knowledge about or experience in the administration of State or local elections, as well as representatives of successful customer service-oriented businesses, and any other individuals with knowledge or experience determined by the President to be of value to the Commission.
(b) The President shall designate two members of the Commission to serve as Co-Chairs.
Sec. 3. Mission. (a) The Commission shall identify best practices and otherwise make recommendations to promote the efficient administration of elections in order to ensure that all eligible voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots without undue delay, and to improve the experience of voters facing other obstacles in casting their ballots, such as members of the military, overseas voters, voters with disabilities, and voters with limited English proficiency.
In doing so, the Commission shall consider as appropriate:
(i) the number, location, management, operation, and design of polling places;
(ii) the training, recruitment, and number of poll workers;
(iii) voting accessibility for uniformed and overseas voters;
(iv) the efficient management of voter rolls and poll books;
(v) voting machine capacity and technology;
(vi) ballot simplicity and voter education;
(vii) voting accessibility for individuals with disabilities, limited English proficiency, and other special needs;
(viii) management of issuing and processing provisional ballots in the polling place on Election Day;
(ix) the issues presented by the administration of absentee ballot programs;
(x) the adequacy of contingency plans for natural disasters and other emergencies that may disrupt elections; and
(xi) other issues related to the efficient administration of elections that the Co-Chairs agree are necessary and appropriate to the Commission’s work.
(b) The Commission shall be advisory in nature and shall submit a final report to the President within 6 months of the date of the Commission’s first public meeting.
Sec. 4. Administration. (a) The Commission shall hold public meetings and engage with Federal, State, and local officials, technical advisors, and nongovernmental organizations, as necessary to carry out its mission.
(b) In carrying out its mission, the Commission shall be informed by, and shall strive to avoid duplicating, the efforts of other governmental entities.
(c) The Commission shall have a staff, which shall provide support for the functions of the Commission.
Sec. 5. Termination. The Commission shall terminate 30 days after it presents its final report to the President.
Sec. 6. General Provisions. (a) To the extent permitted by law, and subject to the availability of appropriations, the General Services Administration shall provide the Commission with such administrative services, funds, facilities, staff, equipment, and other support services as may be necessary to carry out its mission on a reimbursable basis.
(b) Insofar as the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.) (the “Act”), may apply to the Commission, any functions of the President under that Act, except for those in section 6 of the Act, shall be performed by the Administrator of General Services.
(c) Members of the Commission shall serve without any additional compensation for their work on the Commission, but shall be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, to the extent permitted by law for persons serving intermittently in the Government service (5 U.S.C. 5701-5707).
(d) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to a department, agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(e) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.