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Huckabee Cracks Joke About Vote Suppression During GOP Rally, McAuliffe Upset

First Posted: 05/03/09 06:12 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 02:10 PM ET

While campaigning for Republican Virginia gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee jokingly made reference to voter suppression. He told supporters that it's "their job" to keep McDonnell opponents from the polls: "Let the air our of their tires ... keep 'em home. Do the Lord's work."

McDonnell's fans laughed, but Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe isn't amused. He sent a letter to his own supporters highlighting Huckabee's comments. "People died for the right to vote in this country," he writes, "and we have to protect it."

The full letter:

We just found out that while campaigning for Bob McDonnell, Mike Huckabee told a crowd of Republicans that if they know people who aren't going to vote for Bob, it's their job to "Let the air out of their tires" and "keep 'em home." He even called voter suppression "the Lord's work."


This is no joking matter. People died for the right to vote in this country, and we have to protect it.

The General Assembly recently debated election reforms to help prevent voter suppression. But when Republicans on a House of Delegates Subcommittee voted to kill those reforms in a back room, Bob McDonnell sat in silence. Now, when one of his most public supporters is encouraging voter suppression, Bob's sitting in silence again.

It's time for Bob McDonnell to do the right thing for a change. And I need your help to put the pressure on him.

Click Here to Tell Bob McDonnell to Stand up for Voting Rights and Support Reforms to Stop Voter Suppression.

Look, one of the reasons I got involved in politics is that I love getting people engaged in the democratic process. The only way our system works is if we make sure people aren't denied a chance to participate. That's just one of the reasons that in the wake of the problems we saw in Florida during the 2000 election, I founded the Voting Rights Institute when I served as chair of the Democratic Party - so we could take action against intimidation, election errors, and disenfranchisement.

But we need to do more to prevent voter suppression here in Virginia. To get the job done, we're going to need support from people on the other side of the aisle. That's why it's so important that you encourage Bob to get on board with election reform today.

Click Here to Tell Bob McDonnell to Stand up for Voting Rights and Support Reforms to Stop Voter Suppression.

Thanks,

Terry

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