The Right’s New Get out the Vote Strategy: Break Fingers

The Monday edition of the Wall Street Journal featured an article on right-wing get-out-the-vote effort around the nation, but which focused primarily on the work being done in Ohio by Phil Burress of Citizens for Community Values  

If Republicans still have an ace up their sleeve in this fall campaign, it’s people like Phil Burress.

Mr. Burress, a thrice-married, self-described former pornography addict, is president of Citizens for Community Values, a statewide network of politically active Christian conservatives. His work here in 2004 helped turn out evangelical voters who put President Bush over the top in Ohio — the state that made the difference between victory and defeat.

The article notes that despite the Right’s disenchantment with President Bush and the Republican Party as a whole,  they are doing all they can to register as many people as possible and get them to the polls in an attempt to help the GOP maintain its majority in Congress 

As part of its mobilization effort, the CCV recently paired with Wallbuilders’s David Barton for a series of rallies around the state, during which Barton called upon those in attendance to use force, if necessary, in order to get other “values voters” to the polls

Conservative Christians may be down, but they’re far from out on Election Day, valuesvoter guru David Barton said yesterday.

“This is a really, really important election,” Barton said during a speech at Potter’s House Church of God on the West Side.

“Take your Sunday school class to vote, and you’ve got to start breaking fingers if they don’t,” he said.

This can be added to Barton’s recent comment where he warned unmotivated right-wing voters that they’d have to answer to God if they didn’t vote.   

The article doesn’t state explicitly that he made this remarks in his capacity as a speaker on the payroll of the RNC , but it does note that he was “hired by the Republican Party just before the 2004 election to make the rounds of churches and community events [and] is on tour again” – which raises the question: are these the Right’s GOTV tactics or the GOP’s? 

Whatever the answer, the Right’s claim of being champions of “moral values” loses more credibility with each passing day.