Irony Alert: A Kennedy Laments A Stolen Election

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Ah, I kid the Kennedys because I love. Maybe. At any rate, Robert Kennedy Jr. has come out with a long-awaited, in the circles still agitated about such things, and long-winded Rolling Stone story that purports to prove in great detail that sinister Republican machinations caused a fake Bush victory in Ohio in 2004, and thus a fake Bush victory nationwide. It's the sort of breathlessly detailed story that, if it's all you knew about the topic, seems quite energetically damning and convincing on the surface.

The usual pro-Bush suspects have mostly ignored the article. Ron Chusid at Dembloggers laments Kennedy's piece as an "embarrassment which will likely do far more harm than good to the cause of election reform" and has a good discussion and link collection of chatter, almost all negative, about the article among people who might be expected to cheer Kennedy's conclusions. The general conclusion: certainly, some flaws and even possible chicanery in Ohio (as in many elections, in many places). But no smoking gun that amounts to an actual Kerry victory.

Salon–no bastion of pro-Bush sentiment or a gang you'd suspect of propping up his illegitimate regime–has the most thorough and professional debunking of Kennedy's claims. This topic has been in the past a wonderful argument starter and source of baroque theories (though it may well be thoroughly played out by now); feel free to relive those halcyon days of mysteriously long lines, wacky exit poll missteps, spoiled ballots, invalidated registrations, and Kenneth Blackwell's brief heyday as a household word in the comments thread.

NEXT: Cover of the Rolling Stone

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  1. There are two more quality debunkings of RFK Jr’s piece–this one by Myster Pollster (a democratic pollster) http://www.mysterypollster.com/main/2006/06/is_rfk_jr_right.html#more and this one by Ohio State University Law Professor Dan Tokaji http://moritzlaw.osu.edu/blogs/tokaji/2006/06/back-to-ohio-rolling-stone-piece.html

    Didn’t Rolling Stone bother to fact check this piece beforehand?

  2. The only memory I have of election day 2004 is watching Fox sometime around 6:30pm. Brit Hume, Kristol, and Barnes all looked like they needed to be put on suicide watch. It was hide the ties and shoelaces time. Must have seen some fun exit polls they were looking at.

    Ohio is one party state and I wouldn’t trust clowns like Blackwell to wash my car. On a good day they rise to the level of honesty and competence one might associate with the government in Haiti.

  3. embarrassment which will likely do far more harm than good to the cause of election reform”

    We’ve had corrupt elections since, well, colonial times. Election reform? It is a chimera.

  4. Didn’t Rolling Stone bother to fact check this piece beforehand?

    That’s rhetorical, right?

  5. TPG,

    Some of what is published in RS is quite good.* For example, I thought that the article a few months ago in RS about Scientology was quite good.

    *Note that I am neither defending or attacking this particular article; I know squat about what happened in Ohio and really don’t care to know.

  6. Fuck Ken Blackwell.

  7. Salon is a good website, although sometimes I can’t get into it through the free adverts.

    Anyway, couldn’t care less. World Cup in under 29 hours………

  8. A long winded RFK Jr. piece in RS that doesn’t involve evil corporations destroying the earth? I’ll take that as a relative victory. In the meantime, I’ll breathlessly await Jann Wenner’s inevitable endorsement of Ralph Nader in 2008, whether he’s running or not.

  9. I hear all the voters at Graceland Cemetery, here in Chicago, have really gotten behind the piece.

  10. Wait a minute, there are questions raised about the legitimacy of George Bush’s election, and somebody is pointing towards Chicago and saying, “Hey, look over there?”

    I’m stunned. Such a thing cannot possibly be happening.

  11. Actually, I was referring to the fact that Mayor Daley (the senior) had all the corpses in that particular cemetery vote for JFK. It’s the only reason he defeated Nixon.

  12. Okay, we have almost nothing but totally unproven innuendo on the recent presidential elections–close to zero facts supporting or even suggesting massive vote fraud. Dead people voting in Chicago, that’s got some meat behind it. The Democratic meme on the election(s) is both tiresome and irrational. I say that as someone who voted LP in both elections and couldn’t believe that Bush got in the White House in the first place. All elections have problems and likely the occasional instance of local fraud, but these allegations just don’t make any sense. Especially in Florida, where every single county in question was run by a Democratic Supervisor of Elections. The idea that the SOS or governor could somehow sway the election is absolutely ridiculous. The party that tried to “steal” the election was the one that was willing to make shit up to undermine people’s faith in the electoral process. Betcha the Dems would’ve won in 2004 if they hadn’t acted in such an obviously self-serving manner in 2000.

    Sorry, but this just gets increasingly annoying the longer it goes on. We didn’t land on the Moon, either.

  13. Especially in Florida, where every single county in question was run by a Democratic Supervisor of Elections.

    But this just proves what an evil genius Karl Rove is.

    Imagine getting the other party to steal the election for you.

    Evil genius, I say!

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