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Herbert Takes the Bait

You didn't seriously think Bob Herbert could resist writing a column about Robert Kennedy's article claiming Republicans stole the 2004 election in Ohio, did you?

Here is how it works. First, make no mention of the numerous criticisms and debunkings of Kennedy's piece and declare the article absolutely conclusive:

But Mr. Kennedy, in his long, heavily footnoted article ("Was the 2004 Election Stolen?"), leaves no doubt that the democratic process was trampled and left for dead in the Buckeye State. Mr. Kerry almost certainly would have won Ohio if all of his votes had been counted, and if all of the eligible voters who tried to vote for him had been allowed to cast their ballots. [emphasis added]

Then throw in a requisite smear of Republican African-American Ken Blackwell:

The point man for these efforts was the Ohio secretary of state, J. Kenneth Blackwell, a Republican who was both the chief election official in the state and co-chairman of the 2004 Bush-Cheney campaign in Ohio -- just as Katherine Harris was the chief election official and co-chairwoman of the Bush-Cheney campaign in Florida in 2000.

Next, bury the lede in the first sentence of paragraph nine:

No one has been able to prove that the election in Ohio was hijacked.

Finally, conclude with a wild-eyed generalization about evil Republicans systematically subverting democracy and a statement against the war in Iraq:

The lesson out of Ohio (and Florida before it) is that the integrity of the election process needs to be more fiercely defended in the face of outrageous Republican assaults. Democrats, the media and ordinary voters need to fight back.

The right to vote is supposed to mean something in the United States. The idea of going to war overseas in the name of the democratic process while making a mockery of that process here at home is just too ludicrous.

Voila! Almost as easy as using the Bob Herbert automatic column generator!