This isn’t a dream . . .
What Republicans do versus what they say stranger than fiction

Seems the Republican National Committee and the White House were involved in a massive scheme in 2004 to get opposition voters off the rolls in five states, including New Mexico, according to PBS and Truthout.

RNC e-mails detail plans for "vote caging," an illegal dirty trick designed to suppress minority voting. Even for a New Mexican used to rough-and-tumble politics, when you put caging together with contempt of Congress, possible perjury by the nation's top cop and executive privilege used to run a stealth government, it seems like science fiction - as if a malign alien presence had infected the RNC.

How do you account for the president of a party that dreamed up "three strikes and you're out" laws - imprisoning people for life, even if they've stolen only DVDs and baseball cards - keeping convicted perjurer and White House friend Scooter Libby from serving a 30-month jail term because the sentence was too harsh? The sentence was imposed by a Republican judge, a hard-nosed guy for sure, but one who obviously isn't infected with the RNC disease.

How do you account for the president of a party devoted to the sanctity of private property issuing an executive order on July 17 that appears to allow the executive branch to steal anyone's property, all of it, without notification or judicial recourse, if it deems the person is undermining the stability of Iraq?

How do you account for the president's attorney general lying to Congress about an event witnessed by multiple people, and thinking he could get away with it? This is stranger than fiction. Why would Attorney General Alberto Gonzales deny that he and others went to the hospital room of then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to persuade him to sign off on a warrantless search policy, when the FBI chief was there taking notes?

Or how about a presidency that requires its former employees to refuse to respond to congressional subpoenas, putting themselves in contempt of Congress - as serious a charge for a public official as perjury or obstruction of justice?

White House stonewalling in the Bush administration uses executive privilege as a weapon keeping voters away from the truth. By refusing to comply with Congressional subpoenas, the White House is saying that a president, who won by barely half the popular vote, has more right to information than Congress, which represents the total voting population.

This is the action of a political party and its leaders who think democracy is bunkum, even though they say they are trying to export democratic ideals to the Middle East.

This president is not the president of all the people. He represents a wing of his party that's gone quite mad and that the best of its members are beginning to repudiate with disgust.

V.B. Price is an Albuquerque free-lance writer, author, editor and commentator.
August 3, 2007