The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

23 March 2008

Liberals Fantasize About 'Voter Fraud' Charges Against Rush Limbaugh


Left's Latest Fantasy As Real As The Easter Bunny

Like an adult who still believes in the Easter Bunny, our lefty friends sure have vivid imaginations. How else can one explain their latest fantasy: that "Operation Chaos" will result in "voter fraud" charges brought against Rush Limbaugh.

Can you hear that bunny hopping along? Yes, there he is, with a basket full of eggs!

Sure, Limbaugh's intentional plan to destroy the Democrat Party by extending their nasty presidential primary battle for as long as possible may be mischievous, but against the law? Dream on.

Nonetheless, this idea is spreading across the Internet, even as Rush himself boldly begins to sell "Operation Chaos" merchandise through his website. From the "progressives" at Alternet:

Will Rush Limbaugh Be Indicted for Voter Fraud?

By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet

As the board of election in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, where Cleveland is located, launches an investigation into illegal crossover voting in the state's 2008 presidential primary, a big open question remains unanswered: Will county officials go after the ringleaders of apparently illegal electioneering where thousands of Republican voters swore -- under penalty of law -- allegiance to the Democratic Party in order to vote for Hillary Clinton?

In case you missed it, Rush Limbaugh, the nation's top-rated talk radio host, was urging Republicans in Texas and Ohio to skip their party's primary on March 4 and instead cast a vote for Hillary Clinton in order to prolong the fight between her and Barack Obama. And that Tuesday, as media in both states reported, thousands of Republicans did just what Limbaugh and others had suggested -- they changed parties to vote for Clinton.

"I want Hillary to stay in this, Laura," Limbaugh told Laura Ingraham on Feb. 29, near the start of his Hillary crusade. "This is too good a soap opera. We need Barack Obama bloodied up politically, and it's obvious that the Republicans are not going to do it and don't have the stomach for it, as you probably know."

And on Wednesday, the day after the Ohio primary, Fox News asked Clinton if she owed Limbaugh a thank you. "Be careful what you wish for, Rush," she replied. Later that day, Limbaugh played the Fox tape on his show and said, "How do you interpret this, folks? She could have said thank you. She could have said thank you! In fact, I was expecting in her victory speech last night to be thanked.

"I helped give Mrs. Clinton the biggest and happiest moment and night of the campaign season so far, maybe her life, and she tells me, "Be careful what you wish for, Rush"? Why, that sounds like a threat, does it not? I've got a Democrat presidential candidate threatening your host. Why, I am stunned! After all I did ..."

While this all makes for great talk radio and sounds like fun, there is one catch: What Limbaugh encouraged Republican voters to do in Ohio was a fifth-degree felony in that state, punishable with a $2,500 fine and six to 12 months in jail. That is because in order to change party affiliation in Ohio, voters have to fill out a form swearing allegiance to that party's principles "under penalty of election falsification."

On Thursday, March 20, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that the "Cuyahoga County Board of Election has launched an investigation that could lead to criminal charges against voters who maliciously switched parties for the March 4 presidential primary." According to the report, "One voter scribbled the following addendum to his pledge as a new Democrat: "For one day only."

At AOL's Political Machine, Dave quickly pours cold water on the concept:

To call this a stretch is a gross exaggeration. This is the longest of long shots. Any prosecution would have to delve into the state of Limbaughs mind and whether he thought that folks would actually do what he told them. And that without any power of coercion over them at all! Tough to convict.

Limbaugh won't be indicted. No prosecutor will touch it. All this is is one slow news day and a liberal wild fantasy.

And at Wired, Kim Zetter also believes this is going nowhere:

Dan Tokaji, a law professor at Ohio State University's Moritz College of Law who specializes in election law, says it's debatable whether Ohio's law is enforceable and says that even if it is enforceable the likelihood that anyone would be prosecuted under it is "infinitesimally small."

First of all, the law pertains only to a voter who was challenged by poll workers as to his sincerity and signed an affidavit swearing to that sincerity. The secretary of state's office told me that poll workers are supposed to have anyone who switches parties at the polls sign such a statement. The Cleveland Plain Dealer also reported that any voter who switches parties must sign an affidavit.

But Tokaji says it's not clear from the law that the poll worker has an obligation to challenge the voter and have them sign such a statement, and many poll workers did not do this.

But the mainstream media is increasingly picking up on the idea that Limbaugh may have done something wrong, with the The Observer in London grabbing onto the concept that this supposed "shock jock" influenced the outcome:

America's top right-wing 'shock jock' Rush Limbaugh has been leading the charge. 'We want all the disruption in that party possible. It is about us winning,' he told his listeners recently. Other shock jocks have followed suit, telling Republicans in states still to hold their primaries to jump in and vote for Clinton.

Limbaugh has admitted that it is a tough task to persuade his fans to vote for a candidate that he has built a whole political career around viciously attacking. 'I've got a big challenge here to try to get Republicans to change their minds on this and vote for Hillary to keep her in the race, to keep that party at war with itself,' he confessed.

The exact impact of the HillPublicans and the 'Limbaugh effect' is hard to define precisely in recent races and the contests still to come. They can only have an effect in elections that are 'open' - where Republicans can opt to go and vote in the Democratic race and eschew their vote in the Republican ballot. But in recent key Clinton victories in Ohio and Texas some Republican commentators have hailed the strategy as a success. In those states exit polls showed some 9 per cent of voters were Republicans.

That number is roughly twice as large as in most previous contests. They were also split almost evenly between Obama and Clinton, although Clinton has traditionally had a much more difficult time in appealing to such crossover voters than Obama. Therefore the 50-50 divide could easily show the Limbaugh effect in action. If so, the actions of the HillPublicans could have greatly helped Clinton. Her stunning comeback victories in Texas and Ohio saved her political life as her candidacy had seemingly been on the brink of political extinction.

At least the Easter Bunny brings baskets of chocolates and other treats, believing in "progressive" kookdom, however, brings only disappointment and defeat.

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  • Let's just ignore the fact that Democrats crossed over and did the same thing to Republicans. They went around voting for McCain in order to oust Romney and Huckabee.

    The thing is the Republicans admitted it. The Dems lie about it.

    By Blogger Big Mike Lewis, at 23 March, 2008 11:02  

  • It's not so much the Dems lied about it, the MSM just won't discuss it.

    By Blogger CowboyBebop, at 23 March, 2008 13:50  

  • There is one basic reason why an indictment of Rush Limbaugh is a legal impossibility: the law. You cannot indict someone under state law for something they did in another state. They don't have jurisdiction. Rush could break every law on the books of Ohio, but unless he's in Ohio when he does so, it's not a violation of Ohio law. Rush can't even be charged in Ohio, let alone brought to trial.

    By Anonymous johnny dollar, at 23 March, 2008 22:43  

  • "Big Mike", would this be your version of "calling it as you would have it, not as it is"?

    RAISE the voltage, dude.

    Before it's too late.

    By Anonymous hashfanatic, at 24 March, 2008 07:34  

  • This is foolish on all sides. Exit polls in Texas and Ohio showed that GOP voters in the Dem primary broke evenly for Obama and Clinton. In other words, Operator Chaos is Limbaugh self-promotion -- not anything with actual impact.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 24 March, 2008 15:53  

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