The Scene: A polling place in Metropolitan Atlanta, the day after the 2022 election. Two poll workers, a Republican and a Democrat, are reviewing absentee ballots to determine which qualify to be counted.
The context: More Republicans than Democrats have died from Covid 19 infections, partly because Republicans are more likely to treat the virus as a hoax, and more likely to reject vaccination.
Democrat: Here are ten ballots duly submitted on time, with identification in order. Therefore all should be counted.
Republican: Let me see them. Hmmm.
Voting while Black, voting while Black, voting while Latino, voting while Asian: these all seem to be fraudulent! We can’t count them! But these next three appear by the names to be voting while White. Obviously acceptable! Count them.
Democrat: You can’t do that! All these ballots are completely in order! We have to count all of them!
Republican: Well, if you insist. But I think this is voter fraud. I’m lodging a protest.
Democrat: With the State Board of Elections?
Well, we have this list of voters registered here who have died. The majority of them are registered Republicans. I think that’s suspicious.
Republican: No, under the new law, the Legislature is in charge. I’m appealing to the Legislature.
Democrat: But both chambers are under Republican control!
Republican: So? Now, if we’re done with these absentee ballots, I have another issue.
Democrat: What’s that?
Republican: Well, we have this list of voters registered here who have died. The majority of them are registered Republicans. I think that’s suspicious.
Democrat: Why, for goodness’ sake?
Republican: I think this list was made up by Democrats to disenfranchise Republicans.
Democrat: But they’re dead! And it’s well-known that more Republicans than Democrats are dying of Covid. So what’s the problem?
Republican: It’s all a Democrat hoax! The pandemic is just a plot to take away our freedom! These Republican voters aren’t dead, they were just kept from voting by this fraudulent list.
Democrat: That’s the most preposterous nonsense I’ve ever heard!
Republican: Now, the Democratic voters really are dead; some of them submitted absentee ballots anyway. But the Republican undead were kept from voting. It obviously makes sense to cast a ballot for them. Straight ticket Republican, of course!
Democrat: You can’t do that! It’s ballot box stuffing!
Republican: No it isn’t. It’s standing up to Democrat voting fraud.
Democrat: But all you’ve got is a preposterous conspiracy theory, up against an officially certified list of dead voters. You have no leg to stand on!
Republican: Well, all right, but I’m lodging another protest with the Legislature.
Democrat: We’re finally getting somewhere. All the proper absentee ballots will be counted, and none of the dead voters will vote.
A knock at the door:
Senator: I’m Senator Cornpone. We’ve received a couple of protests about the vote-counting going on here. What’s happening?
Republican: This Democrat weasel is trying to count absentee ballots that are obviously fraudulent!
Republican: Why? You can tell from their names that they’re colored people!
Senator: Well, obviously we can’t allow that!
Republican: AND she’s trying to keep Republicans from voting just because they appear on a list of dead voters. And we know that all the reports of more Republicans dying from Covid are just a sinister, cynical Democrat hoax!
Senator: Horrible! This is obviously a case of rampant Democrat fraud. The Legislature will take charge of this precinct and count the votes fairly.
Democrat: But how will we know it’s fair?
Senator: When Republicans win, obviously. Don’t ask stupid questions. Now get out of here before I have you arrested!