Professor Natelson Demagogues Same Day Voting (from Colorado)

Current Montana voter and Colorado resident Rob Natelson wrote today that we should end same-say voter registration because, well, it will prevent fraud that has never been proven or seen. He writes:

The bill is in part an anti-fraud measure.  Opponents have tried to counter the bill by arguing that there has been an absence of same-day-registration electoral fraud.  But this means little since voter fraud—at least of the magnitude that can swing an election—is notoriously hard to prove.  More importantly, however, HB 180 is needed to stem corruption of another kind.

This is the practice of demagogues trucking unregistered people to the polls, people who are essentially transient with no real stake in the community.  Such folk, whose real home is often elsewhere, are more likely to be uninformed about issues, particularly local issues, they will be voting on.  These often include long-term financial measures (such as bond issues) they will not have to pay for.

Natelson’s problem is not with same-day registration at all; it’s with young people voting. In his 18th century view of the world, it seems only the propertied elite should have a say in our elections. He references an earlier post, in which he described the horrifying scene of a mad rabble of college-age voters, as evidence of this horrifying trend of young people voting.

In case Professor Natelson has forgotten, the only proven voter fraud in this state in the past five years was done by Republicans, who tried to disenfranchise legal, registered voters.

It’s the same Republican narrative over and over again. Claim voter fraud that you can’t prove in order to put restrictions on voting that will weed out undesirable elements, like those who Professor Natelson claims “are heavily dependent on government bennies.” As for me, I think those serving in the military, the elderly, the disabled, and young should be able to vote in Montana.

I’m just not sure that someone who lives in Colorado should get to.

If you appreciate an independent voice holding Montana politicians accountable and informing voters, and you can throw a few dollars a month our way, we would certainly appreciate it.

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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba has been writing about Montana politics since 2005 and teaching high school English since 2000. He's a former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.
His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.
In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.


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