File this one under “Republicans Who Don’t Understand Why They Lost The Election.” Virginia attorney general and 2013 gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli has a reliable track record of opposing President Obama and, like other Republicans, climate science. In a radio interview with WMAL’s “Mornings on the Mall,” Cuccinelli unequivocally agreed with guest host Cheri Jacobus’ assertion that Obama “can’t win in a state where photo ID is required. So clearly there’s something going on out there.”
Cuccinelli sympathized with Jacobus’ thinly veiled accusations, responding,”your tone suggests you’re a little upset with me. You’re preaching to the choir. I’m with you completely.”
That “something” that Jacobus alludes to is voter fraud, a Republican scare tactic that featured prominently in the 2012 election, designed to curb Democratic voters, which resulted in nationwide initiatives to implement voter ID laws. Ultimately, states like Texas and Pennsylvania struck them down, citing the suspect motivations of Republican legislators and the potential for disenfranchising thousands of eligible, largely Democratic voters. On Tuesday, several former GOP leaders in Florida admitted that voter suppression was the primary reason the new laws were created—not to combat voter fraud.
During the radio broadcast, Jacobus claimed Obama had lost in every state where photo ID was required to vote—an interesting factoid, but one entirely devoid of truth. In fact, Obama won Michigan, Florida, Hawaii and New Hampshire, four states that have implemented voter ID laws.
Here’s the Nov.20 broadcast:
After the interview, Cuccinelli political spokesman Noah Well stepped in to correct the media’s interpretation of the attorney general’s statements, saying it was “silly” to suggest Cuccinelli doubted the legitimacy of Obama’s re-election, according to The Virginian-Pilot.
“There is no question that President Obama legitimately won re-election,” Wall told the Pilot. “Ken was simply talking about the fact that there were problems on election day which need to be addressed.”
The 2016 election is still four long years away, but one thing is certain: if the GOP continues to claim voter fraud cost them the election, without addressing the structural problems that vex their party, there is little reason to imagine a Republican takeover of the White House.