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Also bungled printing 'Vote tit matters' flyers.


In the great state of Arizona, where long lines at crowded polling places, fake accusations of "voter fraud," and miscellaneous fuckery like the time a GOP consultant paid random street people to run on the Green ticket are the norm, not the exception, it shouldn't be the least bit surprising that today's special election to replace former congressman Trent Franks (R-Havin' My Baby) has a little glitch in the electoral works.

The race to replace Franks pits Republican state Senator Debbie Lesko against Democrat Hiral Tipirneni, an emergency room physician; since Maricopa County has a heavy Republican registration advantage, Lesko is the favorite but a strong showing -- or even a win! -- by Tipirneni might bode well for the general elections this fall. Unfortunately, thanks to Maricopa County's decision to hire a new printer, some 140,000 voter ID cards weren't sent to registered voters in time for the election. But be of good cheer! For once, it looks like this is more actual fuckup than fuckery, and nobody who's registered to vote should be turned away from the polls. Whether the people who didn't get their cards know they're eligible to vote without the card is another matter though. (YOU ARE. GO VOTE.)

Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes, a Democrat, was found in his office exclaiming, "It's not my fault!" as his wookiee co-pilot pounded ineffectually on an instrument panel and roared in frustration. Fontes explained the problem arose when the county's procurement office switched to a new printing company, Di-Mor Business Forms, in December. The Arizona Republic printsplains:

Printing voter IDs is a more complicated process than some printing jobs because there is no room for error and the cards are laminated and perforated so voters can pop them out and slide them into a wallet.

"There's always going to be some time lost transitioning from one printer to another," said Di-Mor owner Ernie Garcia. "We're doing our best. We're working long hours and weekends to finish up the remaining ones. We're doing everything we can in our power to get them caught up."

It took the Recorder's Office from mid-December to mid-February to get unused voter registration cards back from the old printer, which officials did not want to waste, and to confirm the new printer could handle them. Di-Mor worked with the Recorder's Office until early March to test the new process for accuracy.

As a result, new cards have only gone to 60,000 of the 200,000 voters who needed cards after the printing company switch. Also, dare we hope that Di-Mor will buy out a funeral home someday?

Once the newspaper contacted Fontes, he said he would send email notifications to all voters who included email addresses on their registration forms, which seems like the sort of thing that might have occurred to him earlier, you think?

Fontes told ThinkProgress he didn't believe turnout would be affected much by what he called a "little hiccup in printing":

“It’s not that big of an impact on voters because we have redundancies in our system,” said Fontes, a Democrat who took office in 2016 after he campaigned on a promise to fight voter suppression and expand the right to vote in a county notorious for voting issues. “Every voter already got either a ballot in the mail or they got a sample ballot in the mail.”

Even so, some troublemakers still think the lack of a card may lead at least some voters to assume they can't vote; Mesa resident Larry Smith, 66, alerted the Republic to the problem after he realized he hadn't received a card after he updated his registration in January:

It's another black eye for this Recorder's Office [...] You've got people registering to vote, some of them for the first time in their lives. It's the duty of the Recorder to send them a voter ID card.

Just to add to Adrian Fontes's terrible horrible no-good very bad day, the chair of the Arizona Republican Party, Jonathan Lines, sent out an election-eve email blast warning Republican voters to WATCH OUT for voter fraud, because Republicans are assholes that way. It's good old scare-the-Fox-viewers stuff:

“We have received alarming reports that the Democrat official who runs elections in Maricopa County has systematically failed to enforce the voter ID law in recent elections. As a result, your help is vital in making sure the upcoming election is free and fair.” The email told people to “keep your eyes peeled” and call the party “if you observe poll workers failing to check voters’ IDs.”

The email said constituents should not take matters into their own hands by approaching a fraudulent voter, photographing the polling place or staying at the polls after voting.

And what alarming reports were those? Probably someone noticed the Democratic candidate's name is Indian. Or maybe a Latino guy mailing an absentee ballot. Scary stuff, man.

Steven Slugocki, chair of the Maricopa County Democratic Party, scoffed at the panic email:

This is the same tired line that the Republican Party always uses to try to scare voters and undermine elections [...]

By the end of the day, they’ll be talking about ‘illegal aliens’ voting and things like that. They do that every time.

If you're in Arizona's Eighth district, be sure to get out and vote, and make sure you speak your absolute worst high school Spanish real loud outside the polling place. Especially if Spanish is your first language. That ought to freak the idiots out.

Go vote, and then you may OPEN THREAD.

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[Arizona Republic / ThinkProgress / Newsweek]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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Republicans are devouring each other's carcasses, and we are here for it! Especially when one of those Republicans is King Kris of the Kansas Votefucker Klan ... errr, Clan! It's been a week since Kansans cast their votes in the gubernatorial primary, and the GOP looks to be rolling up its sleeves for a slugfest.

As we type, Kobach leads by 298 votes out of more than 314,000 cast -- a whopping 0.00095 percent, if you round up! The Kansas GOP begged Donald Trump to stay out of the race and leave the field clear for sitting governor Jeff Colyer, who took over when Sam Brownback wandered off to bring Jesus to the Hottentots on behalf of the US government. Safe bet that Colyer would be gearing up for the general election now if President Twitterthumbs hadn't flapped his yap. So thanks for that, Donny!

No, really, THANKS!

Remember the hanging chad debacle in Florida? Now picture it in a landlocked state with more cows than people. It's like fantasy island for Devin Nunes, ALLEGEDLY.

Oh, but we are to kid!

After first insisting he wasn't going to recuse from the counting, Secretary of State Kris Kobach (one and the same!) wrote Colyer a fabulously bitchy letter agreeing to hand off the tabulation to his deputy, Eric Rucker. Colyer had made the shocking suggestion that Kobach delegate responsibility to the Kansas attorney general, rather than his own political appointee, and Kobach was stretched out on the settee with a fit of the vapors at the gross impropriety of it all!

I will not breach the public trust and arbitrarily assign my responsibilities to another office that is not granted such authority by the laws of Kansas.

After several anguished paragraphs, Kobach closed by remonstrating that Colyer was betraying his office by destroying the faith of Kansans in the sacred integrity of their electoral process.

As governor of Kansas, your unrestrained rhetoric has the potential to undermine the public's confidence in the election process. May I suggest that you trust the people of Kansas have made the right decision at the polls and that our election officials will properly determine the result as they do in every election.

Said the guy whose entire adult life has been dedicated to whipping up panic about millions of imaginary illegal alien voters.

So now these two princes can kick the crap out of each other WITH VOTES, specifically, provisional ballots cast by unaffiliated voters under the supervision of poorly trained poll workers. Kansas holds closed primaries, meaning only registered Republicans can vote to select the GOP candidate, BUT an unaffiliated voter can cast a vote by checking a box identifying as a Democrat or a Republican at the polling place. This was news to some poll workers, who mistakenly directed over one thousand unaffiliated voters to use provisional ballots without checking the box indicating party preference. Whoops!

So, will those provisional ballots be counted based on voter intent? Or tossed based on strict interpretation of the statute? And does Kansas law mandate tossing mail-in ballots that arrive without a postmark on Wednesday, since there's no forensic proof that they were mailed before midnight on Tuesday? And how disgusted will the Kansas electorate be when one of these assholes emerges from the melée holding the other one's scalp? And how many millions of dollars are going to be spent on litigating the Republican primary while this nice lady Laura Kelly, the Democratic minority whip of the Kansas Senate, is out campaigning for November?

Even before this debacle, Kobach looked significantly weaker against Kelly than Colyer, with self-funded Libertarian Jeff Orman threatening to throw a wrench in the works. The Wichita Eagle reports on a Remington Research Poll conducted in July:

In a Kelly-Orman-Kobach race, the poll puts Kelly and Kobach effectively in a dead heat — 36 percent for Kelly and 35 percent for Kobach, with Kelly's lead within the margin of error. Orman has 12 percent.

Colyer leads in a three-way race with Kelly and Orman, according to the poll. In that scenario, Colyer receives 38 percent of the vote, while Kelly gets 28 percent and Orman receives 10 percent.

Which is ONE POLL, in a deeply red state, but ... Kobach is a crap candidate who's likely to emerge from this fight with two black eyes and a pissed off base. If there's anyone who can blow this election, it's Kris Kobach.

Keep fighting, Kris! You can do it! (And now we need a shower.)

And YOU need an OPEN THREAD!

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Money us, PLEASE! Throw a tip in the jar, or click here to keep your Wonkette snarking forever.

[Kobach letter / Wichita Eagle / Mother Jones / Kansas City Star]

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While most people spent this weekend telling Nazi punks to fuck off, a couple 11-year-olds were in Las Vegas hacking into voting machines. Why? BECAUSE IT'S FUN!

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