Charles Tapp, the vote suppressing villain of Garland County, has resigned. Good riddance. After reducing the polling places to two and causing all the chaos that unfolded there on election day he needed to go. But it doesn’t stop there. Tapp was on that election commission for 18 years as a Democratic appointment. At one point, he was nearly ousted when there was a change in leadership on the Democratic Central Committee in Garland, only to be reinstated by a last minute double cross. Make no mistake, if the people of Garland County want to secure their right to vote, they have to make sure that fundamental change is seen on the Democratic committee.
Take a look at Garland County last night vs. Garland County in the initial primary. It’s a pretty dramatic shift for a county that originally went to Halter to swing to Lincoln, and it should tell you that this was by design. The machine rallied to protect the incumbent, and decided to do it in the most underhanded of ways. I’m not saying the election was stolen-it wasn’t, the numbers just aren’t there to back up that argument. But what happened in Garland is just plain wrong and offensive. It would be the same if Halter had won or if he had lost in a Lincoln landslide. Tapp may be gone, but a snake can still bite when it’s head is cut off, and Garland County Democrats have to make sure that their committee doesn’t crown someone just like him.
One of the better things that has come out of this is the real mandate for election reform in this state. Not only were problems reported in Garland County in the runoff, but there were some really bizarre things that happened in Monroe County in the initial primary. Bottome line, this state’s election system is FUBAR and there is now a real demand to clean it up, and it starts with change at the Garland County Democratic Central Committee.