Chains of apathy

LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 17) – Kentucky voters went to the polls today.

A few of them anyway.

Election officials say they expect less than 10 percent turnout. If activity at my precinct served as any indication, that might prove an optimistic projection.

I was alone with about 12 election workers. At least I enjoyed prompt and friendly service. The poll workers seemed pleased to have something to do, if only for a few minutes.

Kentucky Republicans voted to choose the candidate who will face incumbent Democrat Gov. Steve Beshear in the general election next fall.

A few of them anyway.

Republican Phil Moffett ran on a platform prominently featuring the Tenth Amendment. He talked about EPA nullification and a program for Kentucky farmers to grow industrial hemp. His primary opponent, Kentucky Senate President David Williams, enjoyed the support of the Republican establishment. The two candidates definitely offered a contrast in approaches and philosophy. Yet the race stirred little passion. Heck, most people hardly noticed.

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New Jersey, Bush’s Favorite Red State?

An announcement made May 11, 2011 by the State of New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission is one that should instantly be one of concern. The new driver’s licenses available in New Jersey will now be “materially compliant under REAL ID standards.” How did a state once described as “cobalt blue” in 2008 by the New York Times become such a willing participant in one of the most blatant violations of our civil liberties by the Bush administration and the Republican-dominated 109th Congress?

The REAL ID Act, introduced in 2005, was presented as a tool against both terrorism and illegal immigration, but has been criticized by groups at the federal and state levels. Like the Tenth Amendment Center, DownsizeDC, a civil libertarian organization whose goals also transcend party lines, has been quick to point out the flaws of REAL ID, and has reiterated calls for repeal on the sixth anniversary of this tyrannical foot in the door legislation. Alongside DownsizeDC’s calls for repeal at the federal level, the Tenth Amendment Center has been instrumental in getting Nullification legislation and/or anti-REAL ID resolutions passed in no fewer than 25 states, delaying the implementation of REAL ID multiple times.

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