has nothing to do with citizenship, andrnsince welfare applicants include manyrnnoncitizens, the citizenship requirementrnfor voting won’t be easy to maintain.rnMost states require a prospective voter torntestify to citizenship, but in actual practicernthere is no easy way to confirm it.rnAfter all, citizenship is virtually irrelevantrnin everyday life. We are seldom, ifrnever, asked to prove it. We carry no identificationrnthat proves it, and there are nornmaster lists. Election officials, whenrnspeaking candidly, will acknowledge thatrnthe citizenship of prospective voters cannotrnrealistically be verified.rnFraudulent voting has occurred beforernin the United States, but only inrnisolated circumstances and always withinrnthe framework of overall public concurrencernin traditional assumptionsrnabout voter qualification, including residency,rncitizenship, minimum age, andrnpersonal commitment to communityrnwell-being and the democratic system.rnBut today we proceed toward social andrnpolitical tribalism in which the individual’srnconnection to community or nationalrnwelfare is tenuous. Our culturalrncohesion has disintegrated before ourrneves and left the integrity of voting weakenedrnand vulnerable.rnWhile we sit and watch, we shouldrndemand explanation. If we are to abandonrnresidency and citizenship requirementsrnfor voter qualification, we shouldrndo it with a clear understanding andrnknowledge that this is what the countryrnwants. If, on the other hand, these majorrnalterations in the voting process arernmade without public discussion, then itrnis a case of massive fraud.rnThe history of nations, recent as wellrnas past, demonstrates that nationhoodrncollapses when fundamental values ceasernto breed a sense of national responsibility.rnWhen there is no longer a commitmentrnto the state that binds diverse populationsrntogether, then the contractrnbetween the individual and the staternloses its meaning. And when a democracyrnloses the political means for preservingrnthe integrity of its elections, itrnloses much of its reason for being.rn—Stan LanglandrnOBITER DICTA: Chronicles’ May issuernon foreign lobbying (“Who OwnsrnAmerica?”) continues to receive nationalrnattention. Patrick Buchanan andrnWilliam Hawkins, for example, both recentlyrndiscussed the issue and the questionsrnit raised in their syndicatedrncolumns.rnThomas Fleming and Allan Carlsonrnalso participated in Patrick Buchanan’srnMay conference on “Winning the CulturernWar,” organized by Mr. Buchanan’srnAmerican Cause Foundation. AllanrnCarlson and Chronicles contributing editorrnSamuel Francis spoke on a panel entitledrn”Culture and Power,” and ThomasrnFleming addressed the issue of “Artrnand the Culture War.” Other Chroniclesrncontributors participating in the conferencernwere Paul Cottfried, E. ChristianrnKopff, and Claes Ryn.rnOur editor described the conferencernas the most successful gathering of conservativesrnhe has ever attended—orrnheard of. Instead of the usual hot airrnabout family values, the speakers addressedrnserious issues: moral education,rnthe collapse of standards in higher education,rnthe homosexual takeover of thernculture, the dispossession of MiddlernAmericans. Some of the best talks wererngiven by artists—Frederick Hart, FredrnTurner, Reed Armstrong—who arguedrnfor a spiritual and unpoliticized understandingrnof culture and its conflicts. Mr.rnBuchanan was accused, throughout hisrncampaign, of being a “know-nothing,”rnbut he has succeeded in putting togetherrna more serious and “highbrow” conferencernon American culture than anythingrnthe right has ever attempted. Andrnbetter even than the speakers was thernaudience, 400-some energetic and seriousrnpeople who could follow and applaudrnarguments with which they didrnnot always agree, who could entertainrncontroversy without losing sight of theirrnprinciples, and who clearly see Mr. Buchanan’srnmovement as the best hope forrnAmerica.rnPrincipalities & Powersrnby Samuel FrancisrnCrossing the LinernOn April 29,1993, the Senate Committeernon Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairsrnheld a confirmation hearing forrnRoberta Achtenberg, President Clinton’srnnominee for the position of AssistantrnSecretary of Housing and Urban Developmentrnfor Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity.rnLike most nominees, MissrnAchtenberg brought along members ofrnher family to lend her support duringrnher hour-long ordeal and fondly introducedrnthem to the committee. But, becausernMiss Achtenberg is an admittedrnlesbian, the first “family member” shernintroduced was “my beloved partner.rnJudge Mary Morgan.” She also broughtrnher rabbi. The hearing room must havernlooked a bit like Maya Angelou’s Inauguralrnpoem come to life.rnEven though neither the beloved partnerrnnor the rabbi opened her or hisrnmouth throughout the proceeding. MissrnAchtenberg’s subtle exploitation of religiousrnauthority to legitimize her openrnsexual perversion could not have beenrnmissed, but dragging them along turnedrnout to be unnecessary after all. Onernwould have thought that the appropriaternreaction from the assembled senatorsrnwould have been to tell Miss Achtenbergrn—and the President who nominatedrnher—that the open practice of sexualrnabnormality inherently disqualifies a personrnfrom serving the people of the UnitedrnStates in a position of public trustrnand that it was an insult to the Congressrnas well as to the citizens it represents forrnan acknowledged lesbian even to showrnup at the hearing, let alone to thrust thernfleshly evidence of her repellent habitrnbefore the committee’s and the public’srneyes. Yet, though four members of therncommittee voted against her nomination,rnnot a one of them uttered a word ofrndisapproval of her perversion, her immorality,rnor her grotesque tastelessness.rnAs the debate on the Achtenbergrnnomination developed, it soon becamernclear how the lines were being drawn.rnThe committee chairman, liberalrnDemocratic Senator Donald Riegle, Jr.,rnAUGUST 1993/9rnrnrn