THE SPINE FEBRUARY 4, 2008
Can you believe it? James Baker, of all people, has enlisted in a campaign to get the Supreme Court to approve as precedent both state and federal laws that guarantee both "ballot security and full access to voting." In this effort, he is joined by Jimmy Carter who spends much of his time certifying that elections in select third world countries are fair, honest and democratic -- even when they are not.In 2005, Baker and Carter led a bi-partisan Commission on Federal Election Reform that did tackle the problem and proposed a uniform voter photo ID. I have no quarrel with the idea.But it's still strange that Baker should put himself forward as a fair elections proponent. Here are some crucial sentences from an article by Carter and Baker on the Sunday Opinion page of the Times:
The Supreme Court faces a difficult and important decision. If the justices divide along partisan lines, as lower courts have, they would add to the political polarization in the country. We hope that they will find a non-partisan path that combines both legitimate concerns...and underscores the importance of applying these laws in a fair...way.
The fact is that Baker doesn't care a fig about fair elections. Remember that he was the man behind Bush v. Gore in the year 2000, the year of the great partisan theft.