System IS Rigged in Alabama
Special election Candidate “Fireman Joe” Lovvorn was installed into our Alabama House of Representatives without an election via Secretary of State John Merrill’s discretion last month. After hearing the news we (me and my eldest Godson Peter) went to the good Secretary’s office who kindly met without an appointment. Lovvorn avoided a Party primary runoff, exceeding the 50% threshold by 13 votes via another low turnout House District 79 poll result. A dismal 12% of voters participated in this taxpayer funded special election Party primary; three quarters of the 16% voter participation which re-installed Rep. Hubbard in 2014. Little surprise the big money candidate anointed by felon Hubbard, et al types wanting 'bidness as usual'...
to keep the graft churning in the former speaker’s hyper-gerrymandered district won as forecasted. Not enough non-machine driven voters bothered to show for the September 13th Party primary our State continues to subsidize (redistributing more dollars to duopoly party machine coffers) to put Mr. Toomer in a runoff with Lovvorn laden with money from BCA type minions.
So the wrongfully installed ‘bought and paid for politician’ replaces the old corrupt felon politician who impeded the general welfare of good folks in our State and county. If witnessing the same PACs (and other political prostitutes who purchased the services ‘Madam of the House’ Hubbard provided) supporting Lovvorn wasn’t enough; seeing ‘public servants’ like Bobby Lowder or appraisers used by government to wrongfully take properties and developers who get bonds released (to avoid paying costs they impose on our infrastructure) to proliferate our unsustainable growth, etc. were all the more revealing. Few were surprised by a primary result (with all the money, negativity and fear mongering tactics used against the non AEA/BCA supported threat Mr. Toomer provided) re-affirming felon Hubbard type results with only 6% of registered voters required to get the bought and paid for “Hubbard’s Love” outcome so easily. As for mental acumen and general understanding of the political economic realities required to be an effective State representative, the more honest evaluations I trust found Lovvorn the most inferior candidate - some say exactly what the BCA, et al types want.
I WAS surprised by the exchange with Secretary Merrill in his office - perhaps because I‘ve come to hold him in such high regard on how he’s improved the SoS office, ensuring the ability of active military abroad to participate in our elections and esp. how well he handled the driver’s license issuance potential impact on voter registration. In short, John Merrill impressed me as someone who genuinely held candidates’ and voters’ civil rights sacred; worthy of utmost respect. When I told him my thoughts on the wrongful elimination of the District 79 election our State IS obliged to provide (given the republican form of government guaranteed in our US Constitution) with only having a Party primary (taxpayers have no business subsidizing) Mr. Merrill said he wished I’d call him. Indeed flattering, but I really don’t think John wants me calling before every decision I think he’s going to make. For those who appreciate irony, he was in Russia at the time observing their elections - hopefully not learning more on eliminating elections from the Russians. Furthermore, Mr. Merrill is more prolific and intelligent than I - thus I’ll remain a lowly paid instructor of economics and prefer to leave matters of this to our Secretary paid to do this task.
In earnest, I think I caught Mr. Merrill off guard. Someone of his political pedigree knows a great deal of what’s transpired in our State, he simply had not put it into perspective what he’d done upon abusing his authority to eliminate an election under the circumstances. Later that (9/23) afternoon, John sent me text message with the record asserting Secretaries had eliminated elections 12 times since 2000. Not sure how to take that… reminded me of Director Jimmy Butts (now out of prison I suppose) telling me about 80% of landowners don’t fight when ALDoT takes their property. OK, so if folks don’t have the ability to fight - it is OK to abuse them? When a bureaucrat takes something which requires $1000 to replace/reproduce as the law says but only offers a third, is OK because victims know it is’nt worth the court cost, effort and time to litigate $667? I considered replying with something snippy about just because your predecessors were willing & able to engage in 12 eliminations doesn’t mean you have to follow in their wrongful footsteps. There are many other things prior Secretaries have done (esp. when it comes to citizens’ and voters’ civil rights) I pray Sect. Merrill will NEVER do again…
Still in great deference to how kind it was for Secretary Merrill to meet with us on a Friday morning - unannounced, without appointment -- it seemed to sincerely bother him someone was explaining his action as blocking candidates’ and voters’ rights to express themselves in a general election. I think Mr. Merrill could appreciate decent, rational individuals may consider this the end result of his elimination. Some folks, as we’re known to say in the Heart of Dixie - would rather ‘eat dirt and die’ than vote in a Party primary. No doubt John knows this history. Eliminating the election removed the ability of voters to express themselves at a ballot box - no matter what it is a voter wishes to express via this vehicle we’re supposed to provide citizens. Express they’d like have write-in campaign given our horrifically anti-competitive ballot access laws, express they don’t want to participate in such a corrupt process even though taxpayers are obliged to provide the opportunity (unlike the subsidized Party primaries they loathe) or perhaps express they’d like to write in their Party candidate who was outspent by AEA/BCA type thugs who don’t mind buying their desired results, etc.
We’ve become just as big a laughing stock voting for whatever Elephant excrement is on the ballot today as decades ago we reveled in Donkey excrement which ‘fertilized’ Alabama corruption just as effectively. From big government Democrat Senator Shelby decades ago to Senator Dial’s recent party change to aid & abet the Riley Republican corruption machine -- nothing has changed for the productive citizen hosting these parasites. I made it clear to Sect. Merrill he holds an important position at an extraordinary time - the window is closing in the vacuum between changing from big govt. (modern) Democrats to letting the (traditional) big govt. Republicans back into power in our State. Alabama will NOT let other parties be competitive in our State; made painfully clear when blocking black parties after removing most of the despicable progressive era barriers blocking voters’ ability to express themselves at ballot boxes. It is difficult to move forward out the mess we ‘progressed’ into (started under Republican Party hegemony) unless good men like John Merrill make better decisions to improve us out of the modern Democrat/traditional Republican result. I applaud the effective yeoman’s work Sect. Merrill has accomplished toward increasing voter registration in Alabama these past years; the applause rings hollow if he eliminates elections and provides further impediments to ballot access and competition in political outcomes.
I pressed the Secretary, perhaps a little too hard, on reversing his wrongful (the recent federal court decision affirms) elimination of this election and mentioned candidates (specifically Messrs. Fenwick and Toomer, along with another rumoured to be considering a campaign) who’s right to this election was usurped. His reply was he didn’t know anyone was thinking about doing so… First, it doesn’t matter if anyone was or not - if we’re going to waste taxpayer money on Party primaries we’re not obliged to provide, our State STILL must provide the general election we ARE obliged (under the Constitution) to have for citizen voters and any potential candidate(s). Installation with 4.2% of eligible voters determining the candidate without a general election is a joke - eliminate the special election facade. Let AEA/BCA type money simply pay-off a governor directly appointing Lovvorn type results. Second, the SoS office has contact numbers for the campaigns… couldn’t his office contact candidates to see if they are interested in the general election the State is suppose to provide? I contacted Fenwick and Toomer to discover they were both considering it before Mr. Merrill’s wrongful (as much as anyone cares about federal court rulings from a judge with such reckless disregard for our civil rights in past rulings) elimination.
Mr. Merrill has a quick and sound mind. He understood exactly what I was arguing about and knew he couldn’t easily reverse himself. I didn’t know that Friday morning Judge Myron Thompson (again no champion of candidates’ and voter’s civil rights) would affirm Alabama’s ballot access laws impeding candidates like Mr. Fenwick are unreasonable/ unconstitutional. Most have argued it this ‘epiphany’ has more to do with a biased jurist like Thompson thinking his ruling will harm Republicans more than Democrats given his past opining on access to ballots, debates, etc. Much like the Amendment vote on the Nov. 8th ballot wanting us to clean up the mess created from years of not following the law, I suspect Sect. Merrill will not correct his wrongful elimination installing Lovvorn as the Dist. 79 Rep. The just thing to do is rescind his installation of Lovvorn and have the Nov. 29th election as scheduled or better still, because of the mess he’s created use the February date as if there’d been a Lovvorn/Toomer run-off to allow time for campaigning. Sad so few are appalled by this result - at least I’ll be on the record with respect to any legislation which passes by only one Lovvorn ‘yea’ vote in the House can be contested in the federal court now that Mr. Merrill has thumbed his nose at Judge Thompson’s decision. NO, I don’t think, nor do I wish JIC or some other non-elected body to discipline John on this. I prefer y’all pray he’ll do right on this and future decisions he’s clearly got the knowledge and wisdom to address better than past Secretaries - it does take a great deal of courage to face and correct mistakes. Like misprinting ballots - OK it has not been a banner month for John, but I’m unwilling to write him off… I must say I’ve despised some of the clearly inflated number (even if done by graftmasters) bantered about on how much it would be to reprint them - says a lot about those who’ll kick someone (who’s not deserved it) when they’re down. I asked John to tell me the amount on re-printing expenses to hopefully print it in before the Alabama Gazette goes to press - maybe next month.
In closing, I again ask readers (some I thought well of) to stop bombing my e-mail with how crazy I am to not vote for the Republocrat you want to win because it transfers wealth in the manner you desire. First, this is ALABAMA - does anyone seriously think her 9 electoral votes are NOT going to Trump. “If these shadows go unaltered,” as Dickens penned, it is difficult to forecast Mr. Trump earning more than 220 or so electoral votes. I still do not see how different this election cycle has been - I find the same media bias covering and shepherding the biggest champion of govt. on the Republican side (as it did with Dole, McCain, Romney) to ‘clear the field’ for the biggest champion of govt. on the Democratic Party side. Good to hear more folks than usual talking about the two former Republican Governors (Johnson-Weld ticket) who managed to overcome the duopoly impediments to get on all 50 State ballots - still don’t see how that will make for a different result when folks keep wasting their votes on duopoly choices. It is a little different to hear so many saying they’ll write-in Castle, De LaFuente, LaRiva, McMullen, Soltysik or Stein in States which wouldn’t allow them on the ballot. When enough voters do this to EXCEED the margin of victory - then one of the duopoly losers may care as these voters can be the key to future victories. If so, we may see participation of eligible voters exceed the usual 48% or so this cycle. If not, 2016 will look much like past presidential election results; an outcome which won’t matter to productive citizens who host our political parasites, but will matter to the specific parasite if it the blue tic or red tic is getting the blood from the host.
Postscript: Lee County Candidate Busby continues to serve the people of Lee County moving forward with his campaign as a write-in to protest the ‘English’ put on ballot access. As usual with no competition in ANY of the Commission races, some are going to write-in Busby in all Districts up this cycle instead of the no vote results our politburo desires. I hope his video on how the write-in process works will make more comfortable in exercising this important civil right. Busby still goes door to door handing out pocket Constitutions - hope the irony of not allowing a Constitution Party candidate on a ballot this veteran fought so well to secure doesn’t escape those aware of the ‘English’ being put on outcomes of this sort Lee County.