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Some would rather eliminate than educate page 2

Date published: 3/1/2014


And let's set aside the 24th Amendment, which states that "the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax."

Let's focus instead on this elitist notion that some folks just don't deserve to vote.

The term "low-information voter" has been bandied about by Democrats and Republicans for years now. It's real: Too many people can tell you more about carefully crafted characters on "reality" TV shows than about carefully crafted candidates running for offices.

And some of those folks do vote.

The solution is to reach out to them. You know: Republicans tell their story, Democrats tell theirs.

But that's mutated into a different, quicker tactic: Let's make it harder for people to vote. Voter IDs. Long lines on Election Day. Curbing early voting.

Perkins isn't alone in thinking we need to rein in this voting thing.

Here's former Oklahoma congressman Ernest Istook, now a radio talk-show host: "Today's liberal campaigns focus on getting low-information people to start voting. They tend to be from big cities, to depend on government giveaways and to pick politicians they identify with, regardless of the big issues."

And there's Rush Limbaugh, who takes umbrage at any notion that he's talking specifically about minorities or the poor.

"Low-information voters are clearly people [who] don't have all the information available to make a voting choice. That's all they are," he explained last year. " And most of them do vote Democrat. Most of them did vote for Obama. It's not a comment on their intelligence. It's not that they're stupid or don't understand the issues. They just haven't had it all explained to them."

Ah. Much clearer now.

If only we could require them to pay taxes. Or more taxes. Or maybe take some sort of test to prove they've "had it all explained to them."

I don't know how many bubbles there are in a bar of soap--a question that black people in the South faced at voter registrars' offices in my lifetime--but I think it's healthy to ponder it once in a while.

It's also a good idea to keep an eye on the snobs, even if it causes them great suffering.

Daryl Lease is an editorial writer for The Virginian-Pilot.

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