John Lewis Shames Paul Braun, The Congressional Representative Of The John Birch Society To Withdraw A Voter Suppression Amendment
The Republican Party is in the throes of a full scale counterrevolution. They're at war with the revolution conservatives lost in 1781. They're at war with the Constitution that they despised so much, especially the intimation that all men are created equal. Conservatives fought on the side of the British during the Revolution. Those who didn't flee to Canada and the Old Country after they lost-- as well as other conservatives who had remained "neutral" during the war for independence-- insisted that the Constitution preserve the privileges of wealthy white males. The ideals of a new world that had inspired so many of the patriots was trampled on by conservatives-- many from backward Southern states that were as backward then as they are today-- who held the very idea of a united nation hostage to their right-wing ideology. They threatened to tear the new country apart, not just over slavery, but over the franchise as well. No women, no young people, no poor people would be allowed to vote-- or they would walk. Only older white male property owners. The history of conservatism in this country is the history of opposing every extension of the franchise that has come down the pike.
Ironically, now that they own their own political party, well-funded by a greed-obsessed and dangerously powerful plutocracy, many of the very people who they would bar from the franchise are their keenest followers. Low-info voters, especially, though not exclusively, in the Old Confederacy can buy into a zeitgeist manufactured by right-wing wealth. They have Fox and Hate Talk Radio validating their basest instincts and stoking and manipulating manufactured fears and prejudices. Objective reality and science are now just a he-said/she-said proposition as the vilest aspects of the Republican lizard brain seem perfectly respectable to large segments of the population.
The states that the GOP controls-- and not just southern throwbacks like Alabama, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida-- but normal places that have fallen into their clutches as well-- Wisconsin being the most obvious example-- have been passing laws to suppress voter participation. They are no longer content in opposing extending the franchise, now they have deranged billionaires like the Koch brothers will to fund efforts to prevent people from voting. And how hard was it to dig up some far right congressmen to bring these efforts to the federal level. Yesterday John Birch Society Rep., Paul Broun (R-GA), tried defunding Department of Justice programs that safeguard voter participation-- particularly in the racist South. In the video above he is confronted directly by another Georgia congressman, John Lewis from Atlanta. It's a short and very powerful clip-- powerful enough to have forced Broun (and actual neo-fascist in our Congress-- to smile for the cameras and back down, withdrawing his virulently anti-democratic measure.