Poorly Managed Toddlers Are Running Elections


I know something about toddlers. I have raised five of them. Fortunately, they all went on to become full-fledged, self-accountable adults. There may be a reason for that. I made them suffer the natural consequences of their poor choices with unwavering consistency. They were not poorly managed. So what does managing toddlers have to do with elections, you ask? Everything. 

It seems poorly managed toddlers are in charge of everything after decades of heading down this path. You name it, they rule the roost, whether it is our libraries, K-12, our universities, medicine, our government, or our elections. To date, very little in our elections has been fixed because almost no one holds boards of elections, secretaries of state, or county clerks accountable for bad behavior. In the rare cases when someone does make an effort to hold them accountable, the laws and rules are ignored. Courts won't weigh in. And thus, bad behavior continues because no one pays a steep enough price.

Our elections continue to be a mess because there is no will to correct one's behavior in an environment without painful consequences for doing something wrong. Little changes because we have become used to expecting easy answers and quick fixes. The long-lasting fixes require all hands on deck, but too many are too busy, weak, or distracted to apply the consistent pressure needed to correct the behavior. The fixes also require a media that is willing to tell the truth. Sadly, most of the time, the media are the toddlers who run interference and create more chaos, making it harder for the few adults in the room to make headway or entertain solutions.

There are those, like grassroots activists Kevin Moncla and Joe Rossi, who are actually adults. If you know anything about their work, it is constructive and well-conceived. He and Rossi do their homework. They understand the data. They show the evidence and punch hard when election officials fail to respond appropriately. They are consistent and persistent. They never give up. They are the parents these toddlers need. They are the opposites of what most of our culture looks like.

Moving on to the reasons for writing this article, the above observations and, frankly, UncoverDC's detailed reporting on the 2020 and 2022 elections in Georgia oriented my attention to two paragraphs at the end of a letter sent to the Fulton County Board of Elections from Georgia's State Election Board (SEB). If I weren't firmly grounded in the absurd reality of where our culture is, I seriously would have thought the SEB was joking. 

Kevin Moncla recently posted a February 22 letter to the Fulton County Election Board on X. The subject of the letter referred to a complaint filed in 2022 by Moncla and Joe Rossi about the Fulton County 2020 General Election (SEB Case No. 2022-109). Their complaint was reviewed by the SEB and adjudicated in a January 16, 2024 SEB meeting. 

The SEB's letter from John Fervier, Chairman of the State Election Board, opens well enough, with several paragraphs that properly cite Georgia Election Law and State Election Board Rules. Fervier makes the case in plain English about how ballots should be processed, counted, and tabulated. So far, so good. The adults are in the room. 

However, on the last page, when we are finally told that statutes were violated, rules were ignored, and the complaint was, in fact, valid—the toddlers take over. The toddlers at the SEB confirm that the tikes in Fulton County destroyed all kinds of furniture, threw their sippy cups, and ruined all the expensive area rugs. And everything is a mess because of it.

Before you know it, however, the adults leave the room. Now. Their words are angry. They glare as they leave. But these parents give the tikes their popsicles anyway, a perfect invitation for the bad behavior to continue on to another day. Honest to goodness, I had to read the letter several times to ensure I had fully understood the outcome of this complaint.

The two paragraphs below highlight just how sternly delivered their message is. I'm sure no one will ever again violate a statute or rule with this kind of punishment.

What do we do when county clerks fail to maintain voter rolls? What do we do when election boards actually find wrongdoing and do nothing? What do we do when our media spend 24/7 throwing tacks in the road instead of trying to amplify the efforts of citizens like Moncla and Rossi? What do we do when the Supreme Court dismisses without comment an election case that has solid evidence an election was corrupted? What do we do when the toddlers are in charge?

I'll tell you what. We recognize what time it is and we put our big boy panties on just like Moncla, Rossi and others have done and get to work. 

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