"GOP Consultant: Voter ID, Longer Lines Are Partisan Strategy"
On Monday, the Pew Center on the States hosted an election post-mortem conference to discuss voting issues. During one panel focused on the long lines and voting difficulties many Americans faced this election, Republican campaign consultant Scott Tranter laughed off the idea that bipartisan support for election reform could ever be achieved. Tranter noted that, as campaign staffers, “we want to do everything we can to help our sides,” even when that means longer lines or voter ID laws:
I don’t hold out any hope that there’s going to be any grand bipartisan agreement on voter ID laws, or you know, Internet voting or whatever it may be to alleviate some of these problems, because at the end of the day, a lot of us are campaign professionals and we want to do everything we can to help our sides. Sometimes we think that’s voter ID, sometimes we think that’s longer lines, whatever it may be.
Tranter, whose data consulting company was hired by Mitt Romney’s campaign, conceded that he believed elections officials needed to be better prepared to minimize problems, and suggested he supports more polling locations per precincts. Still, his unguarded remark revealed that GOP campaign staffers think of voter ID laws and longer lines as simply a component in campaign strategy.
Tranter’s comments fall in line with admissions made by other Republicans that their motives for pushing new election laws are less than pristine. Florida Republicans recently conceded that new changes to election laws, which led to 6-hour lines at the polls, were intended to suppress Democratic and minority votes. Even earlier in the election cycle, Pennsylvania House Leader Mike Turzai (R-PA) championed the state’s voter ID law because it was “gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.” The voter ID law was invalidated for the 2012 election, and Governor Romney did not win the state.
Watch the full clip at C-SPAN.