To the editor:
Gov. Rauner talks the talk about improving voter participation to enliven democracy in Illinois, but when it’s time to walk the walk, he falls limp. Dismissing huge bipartisan majorities on the House (86-30) and Senate (50-7) that passed automatic voter legislation in May, Rauner let it languish for two months before his veto, preventing it from taking effect in 2018, when he plans to run for re-election.
His first concern is utterly frivolous; the standard GOP canard of Democratic voter fraud, when the only voter fraud is relentless GOP efforts to restrict minority voting through photo ID, fewer polling places, restricted early voting, onerous eligibility requirements, among others. Rauner’s too slick to promote those tactics, relying on feigned voter fraud concerns without an iota of evidence to block automatic voter registration. His second concern regarding possible conflict with federal voting law is equally frivolous. Negotiations between bill supporters and Rauner that could have easily resolved that concern broke down when Rauner demanded no change be made till January 2019, when he assumes he’ll be starting his second term.
That’s not going to happen. When you discredit your reform pronouncements with contradictory action on virtually every important issue, the voters will show you just how easy term-limiting cynical, ineffective public servants can be. Rauner can veto motor voter [bill] in Illinois, but he can’t veto voters from motoring to the polls in 2018 to send him packing.