by Max Brantley
KARK's Melissa Simas aired an extensive report on the 6 p.m. newscast examining Republican congressional candidate Tim Griffin's involvement in Republican Party efforts to strip Florida voter rolls of people inclined to vote Democratic (race being a key determinant.) It's remarkably detailed. I can't find a link currently, but one is to be posted soon on the website.
Griffin offers his customary defense. Wasn't me. Wasn't wrong. Nobody asked me about it. And so on. Unfortunately for him, a federal report quoted by Channel 4 offers all the information you need to know about Griffin's involvement in the U.S. attorney firing scandal, his smelly interim appointment to replace Bud Cummins (whom Griffin slandered) and the reason he couldn't stand sworn congressional committee scrutiny.
But Griffin also offered up to Channel 4 what I believe to be a lie. He alibied that Republicans were only looking for bogus registrations in Florida (not merely finding legitimate voters to challenge who didn't reply to GOP mail because, say, they happened to be serving in Iraq). He claims false registrations such as Mickey Mouse or similar were found in his "caging" work. I ask that he produce evidence of this. We know paid voter registration drives have occasionally turned in bogus voter names for bounties, but I've never yet heard of a successful registration of a Mickey Mouse, much less a vote of a Mickey Mouse or similar. Griffin would have you believe that's what was afoot in Florida in challenges to bona fide voters. It wasn't. It was the typical Republican tactic of attempting to suppress minority vote. It's an effort of decades-long standing that has, as Channel 4 noted, produced court orders limiting Republican activities at polling places because of their threatening nature.