VOCES Action joins True the Vote to Oppose AG Holder's Attack on Election Reforms
Where voter registration fraud prevails, voter fraud likely prevails. Without the Texas ID bill, voter registration is the primary defense against fraud.
VOCES Action stands strongly in educating Hispanics on the conservative issues, and I know, as a matter of fact, that Hispanics understand that to have transparency and integrity in elections, a photo voter ID is necessary. On December 13th, I was invited to speak at a rally sponsored by True the Vote, headed by Catherine Engelbrecht, a wonderful patriot. True The Vote, is an initiative developed by citizens for citizens, meant to inspire and equip volunteers for involvement at every stage of our electoral process. The organization promotes ideas that actively protect the rights of legitimate voters, regardless of their political party affiliation. I encourage each one of you to go to their website and to get involved: www.truethevote.org.
During the last Texas legislative session, both chambers were tasked by Gov. Rick Perry to make voter ID legislation a priority. The legislation passed, and the bill would require Texans to show a valid photo ID - such as a drivers license or state-issued ID card, a military ID or a passport - to vote.
Attorney General Eric Holder came to Austin on the 13th to speak at the LBJ Library to denounce the Texas voter ID laws and claimed that simple voter ID laws were somehow discriminatory. Holder ominously claimed that he would use the power of his office to “enforce civil rights protections” during the upcoming 2012 elections. This is abuse of power. I have followed this bill very closely since two sessions ago, and this session, I was very glad it passed to the help of all our Republicans legislators. I felt very pleased that Rep. Jose Aliseda (R-Beeville) who, like myself is a naturalized U.S. citizen born in Mexico, defended the bill strongly.
Here is the video and transcript of my speech. As I frequently do, at the end of my speech, I spoke for two minutes in Spanish for the Spanish-speaking media.
Good afternoon. I am here standing as a proud American. And also as a Hispanic American. I know that most Hispanics are hard working people, people of honesty and integrity and we are glad to be in the United States, a country that offers freedoms and opportunities not found in other countries. However, the freedoms we enjoy are fragile. They can be lost if we do not take a stand to defend them. Our freedoms depend on the integrity of our government and the integrity of our government rests on the integrity of our elections. Where there is voter fraud, this integrity is lost and all Americans suffer from this assault on our foundational freedoms. Let me be clear: Voter fraud is not a partisan issue; it is not a Republican versus Democrat issue. Voter fraud is not an issue about ethnicity or race, its not a Hispanic, White or Black issue, Its not about social status! Whoever commits voter fraud is a criminal, whether a Democrat or Republican, white, black, Hispanic, rich or poor, and should be punished for their attack on this foundational freedom.
Some deny the reality of voter fraud, calling it a scare tactic. However, it is a fact and it should scare all Americans. In the last election, voter registration fraud happened on a large scale. In Pinellas County Florida, 803 people registered to vote whose address was the county jail or court house. In Wisconsin, 30,000 voter registrations were questioned after it was discovered felons were used as registration workers. In Pennsylvania 57,000 registrations were found to have falsification of information. And this is certainly happening in Texas. Dallas county had to stop using voter registration cards as a basis for calling jurors because the list of names on the voter registration lists contained too many people who were not US citizens. However, The full extent of voter registration fraud cannot be known - it is takes too much effort to investigate.
Where voter registration fraud prevails, voter fraud likely prevails. Without the Texas ID bill, voter registration is the primary defense against fraud. And it still is not a perfect defense. Unfortunately, is it very easy to get false voter registration cards. All you have to do is write down a bogus name and you get a registration card in the mail.
The Texas voter ID bill has one purpose: to limit voter fraud. It requires each person to show his or her identification with a photo and to match the name on the voter registration list. It is a simple and logical step to reduce voter fraud. So why has Attorney General Eric Holder come to Texas and voiced his opposition to this bill? He says that it discriminates against some voters. This is nonsense! It is the responsibility of the attorney general to uphold election laws that reduce fraud and corruption and voter ID is not an unreasonable burden on legal voters.
In Mexico, there are a lot more poor people than in the US and yet they require every voter to have a voter identification card. Mexico did this to combat the high degree of voter fraud that marked its elections in the past. And guess what? The voter identification card has greatly reduced voter fraud in Mexico. If Mexico can implement voter ID, I think the United States certainly can implement voter ID as well. If you do not have photo ID with you right now please raise your hand. If you would like one you can get one for free at the Department of Public safety.
This is not an unreasonable burden on legal voters. When honesty takes a second place in our hearts, we pull down everything good and noble that once surrounded us. We are trying to find out who is illegally engaging in voter fraud, no matter what color or ethnicity. It applies to ALL people, not just blacks and Latinos. We all have to show ID when we cash checks, drive a car, collect food stamps or get on an airplane. So why cannot we do the same for our elections, the foundational freedom of our country. Voter ID is a common sense, nonpartisan solution to a real problem. So why does Attorney General Eric Holder oppose it? Is he trying to divert attention from the failures of his administration of the Department of Justice? Is he trying to remove the heat from the "Fast and Furious" scandal? Is he trying to campaign for President Obama? All these are an abuse of the public office to which he was elected. The Attorney General has the job to defend justice, not oppose it. If he cares about the integrity of our elections, he would support the Texas voter ID bill.
Now for those in the Spanish speaking community and media let me say:
Estimados ciudadanos de habla hispana. La comunidad de los Estados Unidos siempre habla de la honestidad y de la integridad como valores importante para su gente. Sin embargo a el Procurador General o Secretario de Justicia de los Estados Unidos Eric Holder eso le tiene sin cuidado. Será acaso para desviar la atención de sus malos manejos en situaciones como la de "Rápido y furioso"? Será que está haciendo campaña para el Presiente Obama? Ahora quiere intervenir en anular una legislación que es apropiada y buena para nuestro estado?
Por favor seamos honestos, ¿ quién de ustedes no tiene una identificación con foto? ¿Quién? Si usted no tiene una identificación con foto vaya al Departamento de Seguridad Publica y ahí le dan una sin costo alguno.
Quizá usted use la credencial para obtener una prescripción en la farmacia, para rentar una película, para obtener estampillas para alimentos, para comprar un arma, para viajar. ¿Porqué para votar no? ¿Porqué no?
El señor fiscal general está tratando de intimidar a las personas de las minorías con un mensaje mal fundado. El señor está haciendo uso de su posición de poder para hacer campaña para un presidente que no sabe cumplir sus promesas y que ha llevado a este país a la peor y más miserable situación económica que ha habido en muchísimo tiempo.
El fraude electoral no es algo agradable para nadie. Yo les animo a cuidadosamente a reflexionar en cuál es la razón que el fiscal general Eric Holder querría venir este aquí a Texas a criticar una legislación que fue aprobada en la casa de representes para que se ejerza el voto justo y tranparente.
And I will finish this speech by saying that I took an oath and this is my country and , THIS is my flag God bless America!
Rep. Jose Aliseda had defended the bill on the floor and here are some excerpts from his speech during the last session:
"According to 2008 statistics, in one county, Goliad County, they had more people registered to vote than persons eligible to vote. Under current law, the opportunity for fraud is there."
"In 2008, a high water mark for voter registration, Texas had an overall registration rate of 76 percent of eligible voters. "
"In McMullen County, in 2008, had a voter registration of 97.9 percent, 21.4 percent above the state average. The opportunity for fraud is probably there."
"In Jim Wells County, , in 2008, had an eligible voter registration of 90.44 percent or 14 percent above the state average. The opportunity for fraud is probably there."
"In 2004, in Bee County, we had a woman cast a ballot as if she were her deceased mother."
"In 2007, the Texas State Auditor’s Office found that Texas had 49,049 registered voters who may have been ineligible to vote. Of those, there were 23,500 voters on the rolls who may have been deceased. Would Voter ID possibly have stopped them if they had tried to vote? I think so.
There were 2,359 voters identified as having duplicate records. I believe Voter ID would have helped there also."