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Palast writes: "'Why would somebody say a crazy statement like that?' Bernie had his arms spread like gull wings, fingers scribbling facts in the air. 'Why' was not really a question."

President Trump and Kris Kobach, the head of the 
so-called 'Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.' (photo: Carolyn Kaster/AP)
President Trump and Kris Kobach, the head of the so-called 'Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.' (photo: Carolyn Kaster/AP)

Sanders and Jackson Join Hands to Take On Trump's Vote Thief-in-Chief

By Greg Palast,

19 July 17


hy would somebody say a crazy statement like that?” Bernie had his arms spread like gull wings, fingers scribbling facts in the air.

“Why” was not really a question.

Watch this five-minute video of Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rev. Jesse Jackson and their alliance to take on Kris Kobach, the Dr. Moriarty of vote suppression.

In Jesse Jackson’s private ministry office, the Reverend and I had just laid out President Trump’s claim that 3 million Americans were voting twice—a massive crime wave of Black, Brown and Asian-Americans stealing the vote.

To Sanders, ‘crazy' is Trump’s cover. Bernie was worked up. He was talking about Trump’s claims of millions of people illegally voting twice. “To my mind it was fairly obvious. What he was doing was sending a signal to every Republican governor in the country: you go do voter suppression. So that is the signal. So then he follows up with this so-called ‘Commission.’”

Jackson has declared war—and drafted Bernie Sanders for the front-line assault. Their target: Donald Trump’s so-called “Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity”—and its chief, Kris Kobach, Sec. of State of Kansas.

It was Sunday. The choir was rocking the sanctuary upstairs.  This was the annual convention of Operation Rainbow/PUSH. 

Rev. Jackson had just announced that he’d asked the nation’s premier voting rights attorney, Barbara Arnwine, to chair a commission of real experts to counter Trump’s and Kobach’s commission of zealots and whack-jobs Trump assigned to rewrite the nation’s laws to make voting an effectively whites-only affair. (Trump appointees include “Prof.” Hans von Spakovsky who peddles the completely Loony-Tunes claim that over one million aliens voted in the last election.)

Jackson had called me down to his sanctum to explain Kobach’s secretive “Crosscheck” vote purging program and enlist Sanders’ help in stopping Kobach from forcing this ethnic voter cleansing system on all fifty states.

Today, Wednesday, Kobach (and the nominal Commission Chairman, Vice-President Mike Pence), will hold the first meeting of what Trump calls his “Vote Fraud Commission.”

Weirdly, Kobach will have a formal swearing-in ceremony—for a commission without any congressional authority.  Authorized or not, this commission can create big trouble for the remnants of our democracy.

They Gave Kobach their Files – then Lied About It.

Last week, there was a big brouhaha over Kobach asking every state to turn over their voter files, including the last four digits of citizens’ social security numbers.

In response to a public outcry, one GOP Secretary of State after another loudly proclaimed they would not turn over their voter rolls to Kobach and his Commission. 

They lied.

It’s absolutely true that the GOP officials of Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi did not hand over their files to Kobach in Washington.  However, they failed to mention that they’d already turned over their files, including those social security numbers, to Kobach’s office in Kansas.

In all, 28 states, almost all GOP-controlled, turned over a total of 98,263,382 voter files to Kobach.

And that’s far more dangerous than sending voter files to DC.  The files sent to Kansas churned through Kobach’s “Crosscheck” computer program—which spit out the names of 7.2 million “potential double-registered” voters who, Kobach claims, could vote in two states in a single election.  And for this “potential” crime, hundreds of thousands will lose their right to vote.

Here, by the way, is the complete list of states that turned over their voter files to Kobach, the number of files given to him and the number of suspected voters in each state.

While the Palast team, working for Al Jazeera and Rolling Stone, obtained the confidential lists of millions of names on the Crosscheck suspect list, this document was hidden in plain sight… right there on the website of the Kansas Secretary of State!

No wonder the US media missed it. 

But, as the journalist Yogi Berra once said, “It’s amazing what you can see if you look.”

So, enjoy the 5-minute flick, then watch the movie of the full investigation of Kobach and billionaires behind him: The Best Democracy Money Can Buy—A Tale of Billionaires & Ballot Bandits. your social media marketing partner


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+12 # Femihumanist 2017-07-19 13:24
Was everyone named Jared Kushner not allowed to vote because the same one (not just the same name) were registered in two states?
+27 # elizabethblock 2017-07-19 14:07
Nancy MacLean, in "Democracy In Chains," points out that the economic liberty that the Trumpistas want is incompatible with democracy. That is, when the voters figure out what it is, they will reject it. They're already doing that with Trumpcare.

So what do you do? You stop them from voting!
-12 # maggetybrick 2017-07-19 14:17
This movie should be provided as a public service. I have no intention of paying to watch it, no matter how good the cause.

Nor am I going to donate the $50 "minimum"!

Talk about outrageous!!!!
+16 # SusanT136 2017-07-20 08:07
Greg Palast has bills to pay too. If you think it's important (which it is) you should be proud to donate whatever you can afford. Without Greg Palast investigating, these lists would still be secret. He has already done a major public service.

Being an investigative journalist is not a big bucks job. Palast tackles investigations when he has the money to fund them - travel expenses, camera operator, research etc. if you would take the time to find out more about him you would realize he's a national treasure. Check out his investigation of vulture capitalists.

Personally I'm super grateful to see prominent figures like Jesse Jackson and Bernie bringing this issue front and center .
+7 # margpark 2017-07-19 15:46
I don't think being registered in two states makes a good argument for voting twice. After all many retired people live in two places. Also the people of color they want to get off the voting lists often have trouble getting to the polls once.
+8 # lfeuille 2017-07-19 19:28
Not only that, state's are notoriously poor at deleting old records when someone moves. It took my brothers several years to get off the DC rolls after he moved to Vermont and then to Maine.

But Crosscheck is worse. It just looks at names. If there is a John Smith in Oregon and a John K. Smith in California they will be flagged as double voters and deleted.
+6 # SusanT136 2017-07-20 08:10
Quoting margpark:
I don't think being registered in two states makes a good argument for voting twice. After all many retired people live in two places. Also the people of color they want to get off the voting lists often have trouble getting to the polls once.

People register to vote in one state only, even if they live in 2 states. The issue here is people who have only similar names (first and last name the same) and no other information in common - like middle name, age, Social Security number - are being flagged and denied the right to vote
+4 # futhark 2017-07-20 02:42
In light of Mr. Trump's recent assertions that 60 lb. sacks of drugs are being flung over the border from Mexico, his wall will have to be transparent so people on the United State side can dodge the projectiles, the question arises concerning the qualifications of the delusional and certifiably insane to vote.
+16 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2017-07-20 05:59
This is good to see. The disenfranchisem ent of African Americans has been one very important way republicans have been able to win so many elections. Jackson knows this better than anyone.

More power to Sanders and his linking up with people like Jesse Jackson. I really don't see the Clinton faction of the democratic party making these alliances. The key to democratic success in 2018 nd 2020 is to get the votes of the people Hillary called "deplorables." They won't be treated well by Trump and they may vote for a good democratic candidate.
+1 # Robbee 2017-07-20 09:26
Sanders and Jackson Join Hands to Take On Trump's Vote Thief-in-Chief
By Greg Palast,
19 July 17

- when pollsters conduct exit polls must they first ask voters what their names are? then discount the vote of anyone with a spanish name?

rump founds a billionaires' commission to suppress legal votes!

if only bernie, jackson and palast would found a people's commission to establish the right to vote? hold virtual meetings? issue press releases? update status of judicial reviews? and issue reports?

it is regrettable that the dem party does not take on crosscheck in each and every state court where repukes cheat registered voters out of their votes? dem party activists? where are your hearts? - the sole purpose of every party is to win elections, period? how can you run a party without protecting dem voters' right to vote?

crosscheck is a racket! a criminal conspiracy to deprive 1.1 million citizens of their right to vote that, by its nature, crosses state lines

there must be federal voting rights litigation brought in behalf of blacks and latinos against secretaries of state of all states that use crosscheck

the naacp, aclu, dems, common cause, center for democracy and helpful others must fund the litigation
+1 # Robbee 2017-07-20 10:02
continued …

the litigation must be aggressively lawyered, so that, by 2018, 1.1 million legitimate voters can vote - in other words, secretaries of state must have a chance to prove that in 2016 blacks and latinos criminally tried to vote in more than one state and crosscheck stopped them - from the fact that crosscheck is a fraud that prevents 1.1 million legitimate voters from voting, a federal judge will have the basis, by 2018, to issue an order prohibiting any state from using crosscheck
-3 # Old School Conservative 2017-07-22 06:12
Crosscheck is being completely misrepresented. People who show up on crosscheck are not struck from the voter roles, it is just a means of flagging potential double registrations. This information goes to the participating States to do with it what they please. When the States get the information it is further crosschecked with things like birth dates, last 4 of social security number, etc. to identify false positives. Furthermore most States notify those who are considered for removal so they have a change to correct the information. If all these safeguards fail and someone is illegitimately removed from the voter list they can still vote on a provisional ballot. I don't see the problem here. I would like to see evidence of anyone who was refused the right to vote based on the actions of crosscheck.
+1 # SusanT136 2017-07-22 09:28
You are very poorly informed. Here is a chance to remedy that situation.

Here's a paragraph from Greg Palast's article in Rolling Stone
"The Virginia list was a revelation. In all, 342,556 names were listed as apparently registered to vote in both Virginia and another state as of January 2014. Thirteen percent of the people on the Crosscheck list, already flagged as inactive voters, were almost immediately removed, meaning a stunning 41,637 names were "canceled" from voter rolls, most of them just before Election Day."

And here's a link to more articles by Palast

Watch his movie. You'll be shocked and disturbed. He interviews a data expert who explains how easy it would be to make a program like Crosscheck be very accurate, and eliminate the errors i.e. matching people with different middle names etc. That's not the goal here. The goal is to disenfranchise likely Democratic voters. That's why people of color are disproportionat ely targeted.
0 # Old School Conservative 2017-07-23 05:52
Palast's reporting is biased and designed to create a reaction for his own agenda. Like I said, this information goes to the States to help clean up the voter roles which is their job to do, regardless if they are using crosscheck or not. States have their own rules regarding inactive voters independent of crosscheck, and regularly purge voter roles of people who miss 2 or 3 consecutive major elections.
0 # NAVYVET 2017-07-22 19:49
In case you missed it, that's what Bernie and Rev Jackson's team plans to do!

Crosscheck is a fraud. I grew up as a white Southerner and I have never met any people of any color, gender, creed or origin, who are MORE CROOKED than the hordes of white self-proclaimed "Christian" Southern men!

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