Last minute bombshells and why we need to end early voting

The title of a Business Insider piece quoting Clinton spokesperson Jennifer Palmieri really says it all: If ‘whopper’ email is published by WikiLeaks in next 2 days, ‘it’s probably a fake’. We shouldn’t read this to mean that they know something huge is coming, but they’re definitely worried about it.

A spokesperson for Hillary Clinton’s campaign said Sunday that if Wikileaks were to publish a bombshell email in the final two days of the election, it would likely not be authentic.

“Friends, please remember that if you see a whopper of a Wikileaks in next two days – it’s probably a fake,” tweeted Jennifer Palmieri, the communications director for the Clinton campaign.

Well, Julian Assange and his crew dumped another 8,200 emails last night, but if there’s a bombshell in there it hasn’t detonated yet. The best anyone seems to have come up with was Clinton’s State Department “disregarding ethics” on some venture in 2010. But what did or didn’t turn out to be in this batch of leaked documents isn’t really the point here. It’s that there could have been something else of importance to the electorate.

The lesson we should be taking away from all the topsy-turvy, roller coaster maneuvers in the 2016 election is that it’s time to do away with most early voting. And while we’re at it, voting by mail where the ballots go out a month or more in advance needs to be dumped also. I realize that such statements will immediately draw gasps of horror from Democrats (who are almost uniformly the ones pushing to expand these schemes) followed by the inevitable charges of racism, sexism, antisemitism and whatever other isms they can nail to this particular cross on any given day. It’s all nonsense and the Democrats know it.

Early voting programs are tools employed by liberals to try to give them additional time to dredge up every last vote they can finagle in marginal states and districts. But in places where Democrats win handily you never seem to hear a peep about it. In New York, aside from absentee ballots, you have precisely fourteen hours to vote on election day and that’s it. In California they have some early voting, but you need to go to county election offices to do it. They don’t actually have the polling places open until tomorrow. Why don’t Democrats complain about the “unfairness” of the system in these states and the burden that it places on this or that demographic group? Because they win those states reliably, so why upset the apple cart.

The argument in favor of abandoning these practices should be obvious by this point. Our national elections can and do turn on a dime. There’s always new information coming out and we’re not just talking about October surprises launched by the campaigns’ opposition research teams. We live in a digital era of leaks and sudden explosions of formerly “private” moments coming into the sunlight. Look how much this presidential race has shifted and buckled just since September. Do you suppose that any of the millions of people out there who have already voted might be having second thoughts? Yes, it’s technically possible to retrieve and change your vote in a handful of states if you’re willing to go through all the effort, but how many people would really do it?

Voting is a privilege of law abiding United States citizens (and the occasional corpse or illegal alien) as well as a right. Those votes should be cast with the most up to date information available to the voter. If the idea of the polls being open on only one business day or during one work shift puts you off your feed, I would suggest a more compact schedule which encompasses a weekend and runs well into the evenings. We could vote from Saturday morning until Tuesday night with the polls open for fourteen hours each day. Then there is no religion or job description which would be shut out from the opportunity and the voters would be making their choice based on the actual state of the race today rather than how it looked in the dog days of summer.

Julian Assange

Jazz Shaw Jul 06, 2022 9:01 AM ET