For some time there's been asimmering freakout on the right about how the Affordable Care Act did sex with the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 and now everyone who visits an ObamaKare Throat-Booting Center will be force-fed a voter registration form while Kathleen Sebelius tattoos DEMORAT COMMIE 4 LYFE on their necks. Sounds great, right? Well cool your jets, because Mother Jones is reporting that the Department of Health and Human Services is suddenly getting coy about enforcing the "motor voter" requirements at federally-run exchanges:

In August, Demos and Project Vote released a report stating that HHS was not planning to provide the voter registration services that the Motor Voter law requires. These services include training navigators, the people hired to help Americans sign up for coverage through the exchanges, to help applicants with voter registration. Demos noted in the report that HHS intended to merely provide a link in the insurance application to the federal voter registration mail-in form.

As recently as August, your POTUS was all like, "Hell yes we are respecting this hustle," so we are not sure what HHS is up to. Mother Jones speculates that it's just 11-dimensional chess:

It could be that HHS it is planning [sic] to enforce the Motor Voter law, but only after the exchanges are up and running and the political furor dies down, says Lawrence Jacobs, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota and author of "Health Care Reform and American Politics." The administration is trying to roll out the massive health care law "under the most adverse circumstances that we've probably ever seen in terms of social welfare reform," he says, and may want to sidestep another clash with the GOP.

Yeah... sidestep a clash with the GOP. Good luck with that.

Ultimately we expect that the physical touch points of Obamacare will be used to register voters just like state DMVs. It's too sweet to pass up. And while we know Republicans are not at all happy about this, don't expect a huge, high-profile crusade against registering people to vote. It looks bad, and why bother, when they've got such a good thing going with their "prevent registered voters from voting unless they have a concealed carry permit and a Kenny Chesney ticket stub because fraud" racket? There can't be any voter fraud if there aren't any voters, right? Check our math on that one.

[Crooks & Liars / Mother Jones]


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