Ken Cuccinelli, former Virginia attorney general and former acting deputy secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, ripped into Democrats during a Committee on House Administration hearing on Wednesday, naming names as he accused the “radical left” of lying about election security laws.
Cuccinelli, who now leads the Election Transparency Initiative, claimed that Democrats are putting forth a false claim that voting is being suppressed.
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“Today it is easier to register and vote than ever before in our history, regardless of where you live, what color you are, or what party you vote for,” Cuccinelli said in his opening remarks. “We should be celebrating this as a great accomplishment, while always looking to improve.”
He went on to say that “the lying demagoguery coming from much of the radical left … represents a large-scale attempt to knowingly convince the American people of a false narrative.” That narrative, he said, is that ever since the 2013 Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder that found Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act to be unconstitutional, “America has been suffering from a rash of voter suppression.”
Data, he claimed, shows that this is “blatantly false.”
Cuccinelli specifically called out several political figures by name, blaming them for the dishonest discourse on the left related to voting laws.
“It starts at the top, with President Biden,” he said, pointing to Biden’s mischaracterization of Georgia’s new election law, in which he falsely said it ended voting hours early.
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Cuccinelli then accused Vice President Kamala Harris, House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf of changing their positions on voter identification requirements.
“Of course, no list of lying left-wing race-baiters would be complete without Stacey Abrams,” he continued, referring to the former Georgia gubernatorial candidate who is now a voting rights activist. Cuccinelli said Abrams “both flip-flopped on her ‘voter I.D. is racist’ position and denied ever holding such a position.”
Focusing on the shifting rhetoric from the left on voter ID laws, Cuccinelli argued that the changes are due both to how the issue has been polling, with most Americans being in favor of them, as well as a result of Democrats not wanting to risk alienating Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., who suggested a voting reform compromise that included an ID requirement.
Democrats claim that election security is merely a pretext for tighter voting laws, and that Republicans are really looking to suppress voting.
“Across the country, restrictive state laws – advanced in almost an entirely partisan fashion by Republican legislators and fueled by dark special interest money – are seeking to limit the franchise under the guise of rooting out fraud and promoting election integrity,” Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., said during his opening statement.
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As many states try to increase election security measures with new laws, Democrats in Congress are trying to pass sweeping federal election reforms that would strip states’ abilities to have rules that require identification beyond the last four digits of one’s Social Security number, or forbid third parties from collecting and submitting other people’s ballots.
That bill, known as the For the People Act, has failed to get off the ground as it lacks the support of all Democrats. Manchin’s proposal includes requiring voter IDs, but Republicans have opposed it due to other aspects, such as leaving congressional districting up to computer models, as opposed to state officials.