This is a busy time for political nerds. Because the state legislature is in session, we want to know immediately when bills are filed, when language is replaced, and who will be cosponsoring. It’s in our blood. For everyone else, it’s just flu season, unless you’re one of the four people in the state who supports the New England Patriots or the Philadelphia Eagles, and then you’re probably all in on sports news. Oh, and Chipper’s in the Hall of Fame. I cared about baseball again yesterday for an hour, and then… nothing again. Recent iterations of the Braves (more so the management) ruined it for me.
Of course, who none of us are paying attention to are the poor, neglected candidates for governor. Why must everyone be focused on legislative issues? What are they to do with all of this downtime with the spotlight focused elsewhere?
If you’re Brian Kemp, naturally, you call up Tamar Hallerman, Greg Bluestein, and Jim Galloway to try to ruffle the feathers of a fellow candidate and at the same time insult several members of the state legislature, and by extension, many unelected citizens of Georgia.
For the uninitiated, I’ll catch you up.
Our voting machines are 16 years old. They are no longer secure. This happens with outdated technology. Voter rolls have been breached more than once in the past three years. This happens with lackadaisical care toward sensitive data. It’s the way of the world.
Old technology must be replaced. Security must be a priority. New methods will develop that will prove things we once believed to be “unhackable” are now as unsinkable as the Titanic. These must be addressed. I’ve written about it. Nathan has written about it. LaDawn has written about it. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has written exhaustively about it. Other outlets in the state and throughout the country have written about it. It’s to the point where only someone who took it as a personal affront would be unable to admit that it was time to learn from mistakes, update the system, and move on. That man is embarrassingly our current Secretary of State, Brian Kemp.
In response to the introduction of the bipartisan H.B. 641, which would require the state to purchase machines that include paper ballots, Kemp has said of supporters (specifically, but not limited to, his opponent in the race for governor, Casey Cagle) that they are “sid(ing) with the radical left to tear down Georgia and our institutions,” and that they are “misinformed,” “craven,” and “conspiracy theorists.”
In other words, we’re anti-Georgian, anti-American, and probably anti-Christian. Because, you know, we think a paper ballot trail is a good idea.
Seventy percent of all localities in the United States have paper trails because it’s a check for accuracy. But, never mind that. Kemp wants you to believe those of us who support this check are part of the lunatic fringe. He doesn’t offer a reason as to why voters shouldn’t want this check, which ultimately says more than all of the wacky things he did say.
Also, if wanting a paper trail makes Kemp see me as a pinko commie, well, fine. I see it as being a proponent of accuracy and accountability in our governmental institutions. Your mileage may vary.