Guest Editorials, Opinion

Dems attempt to keep third-party names off ballot

Democrats have crafted a relentless narrative that Republicans are intent on preventing people from voting. It’s based on the ridiculous premise that even the most rudimentary election requirements and safeguards — voter ID, ballot deadlines — amount to insurmountable impediments for a significant swath of the electorate.

Never mind that voter turnout remains robust or on the rise even in states that leftist activists have ludicrously tarred as imposing “Jim Crow” election laws. In fact, much like the hard-to-find single mother of liberal lore supporting a family of four on the minimum wage, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to dig up actual victims of laws limiting mail-in voting or requiring identification to cast a ballot.

But it turns out that Democrats aren’t really all that interested in democracy when their hold on power might be threatened. Consider an op-ed this week in The Wall Street Journal by Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., the civil rights leader now involved with No Labels, a group that promotes bipartisanship and centrist politics. It is prepared to run “a unity ticket of common-sense candidates” in the 2024 election if Republicans nominate Donald Trump and Democrats stick with Joe Biden.

In response, Chavis notes, “some 40 leading Democratic officials, including President Biden’s former chief of staff, met in Washington to find ways to keep potential candidates endorsed by No Labels off 2024 presidential ballots in all 50 states.”

The effort to deny voters more choices is on full display in Arizona, where No Labels collected signatures to gain ballot access next year, Democrats “responded with fury,” Chavis writes, taking legal action to block the effort. In court papers, the party made the astonishing assertion that allowing No Labels on the ballot would “make it more difficult to elect Democratic Party candidates” and force Democrats to “expend and divert and staff time on voter education to accomplish its mission in Arizona.”

To be fair, an antipathy for third-party candidates is the purview of both major political parties — which is why ballot access laws in many states are a steep hill to climb for Libertarians, Greens and others. And consider the lengths to which both the Democratic and Republican establishments will go to keep third-party presidential hopefuls out of the debates.

But for Democrats to pass themselves off as caped defenders of democracy and the American Way while scheming to prevent voters from having additional choices is the height of hubristic hypocrisy. Progressives like to prattle on about voter “suppression.” What’s it called when you rig the game to make sure nobody else can get on the ballot?

This editorial first appeared in Las Vegas Review-Journal. This commentary should be considered another point of view and not necessarily the opinion or editorial policy of The Dominion Post.