|A Mississippi black church firebombed with "Vote Trump" spray-painted.|
A black church burned in Mississippi would seem an isolated incident in this political season if it weren't incontrovertibly tied to a white nationalist surge across the country.
Very disconcerting are the efforts to suppress African-American and minority votes in so many red states. In a Tweet, Slate political writer Jamelle Bouie laments:
It shouldn't be, but it's still striking to me that even so-called "reasonable" conservatives won't condemn GOP for attacks on black voting.— Jamelle Bouie (@jbouie) November 1, 2016
The evidence is everywhere.
- Efforts to purge voter rolls in North Carolina counties runs counter to federal law but is proceeding anyway, targeting mainly minority voters.
- Texas passed voter-ID laws that courts later overturned but have been slow to correct what appears to be a coordinated misinformation campaign, leading to mass confusion among minority voters.
- Wisconsin passed -- then the courts overturned -- voter-ID laws but have slow-rolled the corrective actions to be undertaken at state DMV offices. A GOP congressman admits why.
- In Florida, Governor Rick Scott refused to extend voter registration despite massive disruption from Hurricane Matthew, but a judge stops him.
- Governor Scott also got nailed for illegally purging the voter rolls, targeting mostly minorities. Some 201,000 may have been affected.
- Voter suppression efforts have been chronicled across the nation, either in red states or by GOP-dominated legislatures.
Politico reports that a motley crew of alt-right and militia groups, Ku Klux Klan members, and Neo-Nazis are all planning to come out in droves on November 8 to suppress the minority vote and “monitor” the democratic process. “The possibility of violence on or around Election Day is very real,” Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center told Politico. “Donald Trump has been telling his supporters for weeks and weeks and weeks now that they are about to have the election stolen from them by evil forces on behalf of the elites.” Politico reports that the list of organizations plotting Election Day efforts includes—but is not limited to—the American Freedom Party, a white-nationalist group; various factions of the K.K.K.; the National Socialist Movement; and the vigilante militia group, the Oath Keepers.This is not happening in a vacuum. Sure, Republican efforts have ramped up in recent years as minority voters become major demographic threats to GOP chances. But the all-out nature of the struggle to "make America white again" has been a major undercurrent of the Trump ascendancy. When this election cycle is over and the Republican Party undergoes a reckoning -- similar to what they underwent after 2012 -- it will have to wonder what's left of the party and wither it will go in the future, if it even has a future.