Tags: mailballot | votefraud | covid19

COVID-19 Spreads Pandemic Voter Mail-In Ballot Fraud Concerns

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By Friday, 12 June 2020 09:46 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Significantly increased mail-in voting this fall in response to coronavirus social distancing protections present collateral safety risks to election process integrity. Among these dangers are politically-incentivized "ballot harvesting," where third parties collect and alter paper ballots "on behalf" of voters and deliver them to election officials. These schemes often employ so-called ballot "brokers" who prey most heavily upon the poor, elderly and minority communities. This can involve collecting absentee ballots and either filling them in directly, or forging the voter's signature. 

Although voter fraud is perpetrated against Democrat as well as Republican candidates, conservatives tend to express greatest and likely most legitimate, concern. And whereas liberal groups often claim that known instances of voter fraud are inconsequential when compared to the total number of ballots cast, the consequences in tight races can be pivotal.

First, let's understand that whether we are selecting a city councilor — or the president of the United States — if every American can't trust the process and the result, the entire democratic system breaks down. And as the National Commission on Federal Election Reform has stated, the problem "is not the magnitude of voter fraud. In close or disputed elections and there are many, a small amount of fraud could make the margin of difference."

The U.S. Supreme Court has concurred with this assessment, noting that known instances of fraud "demonstrate that not only is the risk of voter fraud real, but that it could affect the outcome of a close election."

J. Christian Adams of the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) warns states that aren't careful are issuing "an open invitation to fraud." Adams notes that there are two big problems with mail-in voting. "Number one are the sort of things we discovered in the Justice Department when I was there — of people voting the ballot for other people through undue influence. That's the first one. The second one — the voter rolls are a mess."

Adams' organization has sued several states and counties for refusing to maintain accurate voter rolls, allowing the names of thousands of dead voters, felons and noncitizens to remain in the system. Messy voter rolls make election fraud much easier, Adams says.

Nearly 43,000 voters in Pennsylvania had potentially duplicate registrations in either Pennsylvania or other states.

President Trump has acknowledged and tweeted that there are circumstances where "some absentee OK, when necessary." He himself opted to vote absentee in Florida's primary this year, but has criticized those who are "trying to use" the COVID-19 pandemic to advance their political goals.

Each state is generally responsible for the administration of its own electoral systems, including elections for federal office. Only 34 states have laws requiring voters to show some form of identification at the polls, and not all of these even require photo identification or any proof of citizenship.

Contrary to the claims of many liberals, as the U.S. Supreme Court noted when it upheld Indiana's voter identification law, "flagrant examples" of voter fraud "have been documented throughout this nation's history by respected historians and journalists." That dark history dates back to the 19th century, when New York City's infamous Tammany Hall was synonymous with political corruption and election fraud.

In one New York election in 1844, 55,000 votes were recorded, even though there were only 41,000 eligible voters.

About 40% of U.S. votes are now being done by mail. If the current pandemic is going to force the issue during a presidential election, proponents of voting by mail may have to address obvious risks that come with proposing that more than 200 million ballots be mailed out this fall.

Five states — Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Utah and Hawaii — now do all elections exclusively by mail. Oregon was the first state to adopt voting by mail exclusively for the 2012 and 2018 elections.  Of the 7 million ballots the state sent out in those two elections, some 871,000 ballots were totally unaccounted for.

According to Federal Election Assistance Data, roughly 16 million mail-in ballots ended up missing in the 2016 and 2018 elections. The missing ballots amounted to nearly one in five of all absentee ballots mailed to voters residing in states that do elections exclusively by mail.

Each missing ballot represents an opportunity for someone who is eager to cheat. An investigation by the Colorado Secretary of State reported that a dead World War II veteran named John Grosso voted in a 2006 primary election.  A woman named Sara Sosa who died in 2009 cast ballots in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. Although Mrs. Sosa's husband Miguel died in 2008, a vote was cast in his name one year later.

The Public Interest Legal Foundation found in just eight Virginia counties, 1,046 alien noncitizens successfully registered to vote. The FBI opened an investigation in the state after 20 dead people turned in applications to vote.

In a new $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill, Congress awarded $400 million specifically to help states pay for changes that need to be made to elections, including a shift to more voting by mail. For starters, one of those fundamental changes should mandate that all states receiving that relief must require voters to provide some form of government-issued proof of identity, citizenship and some evidence of breathing. 

Larry Bell is a senior visiting scholar at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He is also an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. Larry has written more than 600 articles for Newsmax and Forbes and is the author of several books. Included are: "Cyberwarfare: Targeting America, Our Infrastructure and Our Future" (2020), "The Weaponization of AI and the Internet: How Global Networks of Infotech Overlords are Expanding Their Control Over Our Lives" (2019), "Reinventing Ourselves: How Technology is Rapidly and Radically Transforming Humanity" (2019), "Thinking Whole: Rejecting Half-Witted Left & Right Brain Limitations" (2018), "Reflections on Oceans and Puddles: One Hundred Reasons to be Enthusiastic, Grateful and Hopeful" (2017), "Cosmic Musings: Contemplating Life Beyond Self" (2016), "Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom" (2015) and "Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax" (2011). He is currently working on a new book with Buzz Aldrin, "Beyond Footprints and Flagpoles." Read Larry Bell's Reports — More Here.

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Although voter fraud is perpetrated against Democrat as well as Republican candidates, conservatives tend to express greatest and likely most legitimate, concern.
mailballot, votefraud, covid19
Friday, 12 June 2020 09:46 AM
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