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For as much as Republicans run around screaming about the threat voter fraud poses to our elections, our rights, and our freedom, they sure seem to be caught doing it quite a bit. I'm not referring the pandemic of voter-ID laws spreading through the states like a virus, at least directly. That kind of legislation are solutions in search of an infinitesimally small problem -- which, judging by reports, seems to be only caused by Republican politicians.
There's no better symbol of this than Charlie White, Indiana's Secretary of State. White was, until recently, the man in charge of elections in the state, and the reason why he isn't anymore is because he actually committed voter fraud. From February:
A Hamilton County jury found White guilty of six of seven felony charges, including false registration, voting in another precinct, submitting a false ballot, theft and two counts of perjury. He was acquitted on one fraud charge.
Now, dude only got one year of home detention for this. And he wasn't alone -- most recently, a Republican candidate for a county supervisor seat in Arizona was accused of voter fraud. Yet, we're supposed to understand that what a sentencing judge treated, essentially, as a misdemeanor is worth upending the lives of millions -- most of whom are black and brown -- across this country to fix it? Well, that's if you view the "voter fraud problem" literally.
But as White's case shows, Republicans can't even legitimize their legislative crusade against voting rights by their own behavior.
So, today, Melissa will pull back the curtain of nonsense, and continue shining light on the voter suppression going on under the name of "protecting our rights." We'll also talk about the two guys Republicans are mainly doing this for, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, and the tumultuous week they've had since announcing Ryan as the running mate one week ago this morning. Ryan, the man who would end Medicare as we know it, will be speaking live this morning at a retirement community in Florida during our first hour, and we'll carry at least some of that live.
We'll also welcome in three young students -- Emma Axelrod, Elena Tsemberis, and Sammi Siegel -- whose Change.org petition helped get a woman moderator chosen for a presidential debate for the first time in 20 years. That, and much more, with our guests:
- Nicole Austin-Hillery, director and counsel of the Brennan Center's Washington, DC office.
- David Chalian, Washington bureau chief for Yahoo! News.
- Katon Dawson, former chair of the South Carolina GOP.
- Karen Finney, columnist for The Hill, former DNC communications director, and MSNBC contributor.
- Matt Miller, Washington Post columnist and MSNBC contributor.
- Rev. Tony Minor, director of advocacy for Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry and member of the African American Ministers Leadership Council.
- Ella Ward, Chesapeake. VA councilwoman currently running for Congress.
As always, folks -- be sure to interact with us during the show here in the comments of this post, on Facebook, and on Twitter, using the hashtag #nerdland. We look forward to having you join us at 10am ET on msnbc!