These days close-fought down-to-the-wire


These days close-fought, down-to-the-wire elections are pretty much win-win propositions for Republicans. Either they win, in which case they’re rightly psyched. Or they lose, in which case they get yet another chance to whine about how they got cheated, feel sorry for themselves, and generally indulge that defining emotional characteristic of contemporary conservatism: self-pity.

In the current issue of National Review, Byron York has a cover story — unfortunately not available online — in which he alleges that Senator Tim Johnson won reelection through vote fraud. I’ve wanted to respond to this profoundly problematic story online for a few days. But I haven’t yet been able to make time. However, since Byron is going on Fox this evening to talk about the piece let me just flag one important fact. And I’ll try to put together a thorough run-down of the issue at some later point.

York’s piece is based on about fifty affidavits compiled by a bunch of ‘Republican lawyers’ in the state. One of them was John Lauck, whom TPM readers will remember from this earlier incident. South Dakota’s Republican Attorney General Mark Barnett, according to the Sioux Falls’ Argus Leader, “reviewed the documents for the first time last week [and] said there were no vote-changing revelations.”

If you want the real scoop on this issue, read the piece by David Kranz from Saturday.