God Bless the Congressional Black Caucus

In what is not meant to be, but will be nonetheless, a fitting tribute to one of their recently deceased founding members, the feisty Shirley Chisholm, the Congressional Black Caucus have planned to mount a challenge to the ’04 presidential election results. Consortium News reports:
John Kerry may have one more chance to “report for duty.” On Jan. 6, after the new Congress convenes, he could join with Reps. John Conyers, Maxine Waters and other members of the House of Representatives in supporting their expected motion for a full-scale investigation of Election 2004, particularly the widespread allegations of voting fraud in the pivotal state of Ohio.

For the House motion to have any standing, it must be signed by at least one U.S. senator. So far, no U.S. senator has stepped forward despite petition drives from rank-and-file Democrats demanding that Bush’s victory be contested.
Anyone who has seen Fahrenheit 9/11 will be able to imagine this scene. Except this time, instead of VP Al Gore presiding over his own fate, it will instead be VP Dick Cheney presiding over the fate of his boss. Chilling.

In ’00, the members of Congress who made the motion could not find a single senator to support them. I hope with every ounce of my being that it will not happen again. Surely John Kerry will not turn his back on his fellow Democrats – both those brave enough to submit the motion and those in every state of the union who are desperate to see their elected Dems mount a real challenge to the Bush Administration’s unchecked reign. The measure would be little more than a symbolic gesture; there is no real hope that even a motion for a full-scale investigation would deter Bush from assuming the presidency at his Jan. 20th inauguration. But the message would be clear – and let’s face it, the Dems are in desperate need of a clear message these days.

For many in the Democratic base, it may be Kerry’s last chance to show that he meant what he said when he challenged the Bush dirty tricksters to “bring it on.”
If Kerry keeps silent as part of an ’08 bid, he’s got it backwards. His only hope for an ’08 bid is to keep his focus on ’04 for the moment. Not supporting the motion because it is merely symbolic, or because he may be accused of sour grapes, would be foolish. Someone in the Democratic party needs to convey to rank-and-file Democrats that they care about clean elections – and more importantly, that there are still those in the Democratic Party with a fighting spirit.

And if there aren’t, well, the Green Party’s got a message for us:

If Senate Democrats allow George W. Bush's victory based on questionable numbers to stand, the Green Party will tell Democratic voters: you have wasted your votes and your campaign contributions on a party that will not defend your right to vote. Regardless of whether the recount effort or a challenge from Senate Democrats overturns Mr. Bush's 2004 election, Americans need to see that corrupt elections will not be tolerated. At the very least, a challenge will advance some sorely needed reforms: auditable paper records of all computer votes; equitable distribution of election equipment; assurance that legitimate votes aren't obstructed; removal of biased partisan officials from supervision of vote counts; clean election laws. This is what the Green Party stands for. Where do the Democrats stand?
Them fightin’ words care of Marc Sanson, co-chair of the United States Green Party. It’s like a siren song for disillusioned Democrats.

If our party can’t answer his question, they’d better not expect to remain our party for long.

Shakesville is run as a safe space. First-time commenters: Please read Shakesville's Commenting Policy and Feminism 101 Section before commenting. We also do lots of in-thread moderation, so we ask that everyone read the entirety of any thread before commenting, to ensure compliance with any in-thread moderation. Thank you.

blog comments powered by Disqus