Dismembering Democracy

Our lunatic president is still manically obsessed with the fact that he lost the popular vote to a woman, a woman, who, as we’ve known, was eminently more qualified to govern than he. That aside, back in January, the Orange Troll announced that he would form a commission to investigate the mythical voter fraud, headed by the even less qualified to govern vice president but got distracted. He finally got around to it today (he has had a really busy day, btw). This morning the pen came out and he scrawled his 9.0 Richter scale signature on another meaningless executive order that is clearly intended to suppress voting. The Yapping Yam also named Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach to co-chair this obvious tool to insure that GOP elections.

Kobach, who helped on the Trump transition team, is a lightning rod for critics who have accused him of extreme racism and having ties to white nationalists.

Kobach is almost single-handedly responsible for some of the nation’s strictest immigration laws in at least a half-dozen states — he not only writes the laws, but advocates for them and battles on their behalf in court. He is often cited as the chief architect of what Arizona’s SB 1070, which was passed in 2010 and led to protests and state boycotts for encouraging the profiling of Latinos and other minorities.

The Arizona law requires police to determine a person’s immigration status when there is “reasonable suspicion” that they are not legally in the US; it was partially upheld by the Supreme Court, but had other sections struck down by the court in 2011.

A senior administration official said Thursday they want the investigation to be a bipartisan effort, that will include current and former state election officials and some outside groups — though it’s unclear which ones.

During the daily White House briefing, deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced five additional members who will be added to a list of about a dozen: Connie Lawson, Indiana’s secretary of state; Bill Gardner, New Hampshire’s secretary of state; Matthew Dunlap, Maine’s secretary of state; Ken Blackwell, former secretary of state of Ohio; and Christy McCormick, who already serves on the US Election Assistance Commission.

Gardner is a Democrat, adding weight to their desire to make it a bipartisan group.

One Democrat does not a bipartisan commission make. As Charlie Pierce notes we now have a commission dedicated to validating the “president*’s megalomania” and he has “handed it over to one of the franchise’s primary arsonists, a guy who only this week got his thumbs screwed by a federal court.” From The Kansas City Star:

U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson on Wednesday upheld an earlier order from a federal magistrate judge requiring Kobach to hand over the documents to the American Civil Liberties Union as part of an ongoing voting rights lawsuit against his office. Robinson, who is based in Kansas City, Kan., was appointed by President George W. Bush. Kobach met with Trump in November and was photographed carrying a document labeled as a strategic plan for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The photograph revealed a reference to voting rolls. The ACLU has sought access to the documents, contending that if Kobach lobbied Trump on changes to federal voting law, it would be relevant to the case.

And Charlie sums it up like no one else can:

So the executive order is the culmination of an ongoing bag job that began at the same time that Camp Runamuck opened its gates in January. However, it has its basis in the fragile psyche of a very dangerous man who raves at his television set when there is no other audience available and who would howl at the wind if it disturbed his hair.

This is King Lear with a nuclear strike force.