A few days ago, I linked to a Rolling Stone article by Robert Kennedy Jr., in which he argued that Republicans successfully cheated in Ohio in 2004, throwing what should have been Kerry’s election to Bush.
At the time, I took a “maybe it was stolen, maybe it wasn’t” view. After reading this persuasive Salon trashing of the Rolling Stone article, I’m convinced the election was not stolen. Yes, Republicans (led by Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell) cheated and suppressed votes (especially Black votes), but even if they hadn’t Bush would have won Ohio.
Kung Fu Monkey has a sensible assessment:
You will notice, however, Salon lightly skipping over big chunks of Blackwell’s actions, whistling and waving over yonder. No mention of the paper-weight registration trick or the multiple judges who found that Blackwell was interfering, repeatedly, with the election. It is a sad day when Salon‘s rejoinder in defense of the republic is “Sure, Blackwell was plainly a partisan bastard who betrayed the public trust, broke the law, and stole votes. But did he actually steal enough votes to swing the election? If not, no foul.”
…Perhaps the title “Was the 2004 Election Stolen” can be argued either way — but a better question is “Was the 2004 Election Fair?” I believe even the Salon article cedes a definite “no.”
Thanks to “Alas” comment-writer Anono for pointing out the Salon article to me.
Cross-posted at Creative Destruction. If you don’t like the moderation here, give it a try over there.