Tags: mailinballots | trump | 2020 | election

Experts Dismiss Trump Theory of Mail-In Balloting Foiled by Foreign Forgeries

Experts Dismiss Trump Theory of Mail-In Balloting Foiled by Foreign Forgeries
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Monday, 22 June 2020 06:00 PM

Election experts say safeguards exist to prevent the kind of fraud President Donald Trump claims could happen in the 2020 presidential election if the U.S. embraces widespread use of mail-in balloting, reports USA Today.

Trump on Monday tweeted: “RIGGED 2020 ELECTION: MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WILL BE PRINTED BY FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AND OTHERS. IT WILL BE THE SCANDAL OF OUR TIMES!”

But Lawrence Norden, director of the Election Reform Program for the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York School of Law, called the assertion "nonsense."

"It doesn't make any sense as an attack against our election system," he told the news outlet. "It would be too easy to catch. You just wouldn't be able to do it. There's obviously other ways – cyberwarfare – of attacking election infrastructure. I think we have to be worried about them. But forging mail ballots is not a serious threat."

As quoted in USA Today, he explained that there are multiple levels of safeguards in place that would make the kind of interference described by Trump more than a little impractical.

Norden said the "most obvious" reason is that ballots must be returned in a secrecy envelope created by local election authorities. He said the envelopes are bar-coded in many states, using unique identifiers linking ballot and voter.

The secrecy envelopes also require personal information that only the voter should have – these may include a portion of a voter's Social Security number and his or her signature, Norden said. And states commonly use signature verification tools.

Plus, different machines are in use in different jurisdictions to tabulate votes, so a forging operation would have to account for a multitude of systems in order for their forgeries to pass muster in each jurisdiction. 

"In other words, there are security measures in place that make the kind of scheme he’s imagining impossible," Norden told the news outlet.

Ellen Weintraub, a Democratic member of the Federal Election Commission, said there was no basis for the president’s claim: "Here’s the truth: election administrators say it’s virtually impossible for a foreign country to counterfeit ballots and get away with it,” she tweeted. “There is no basis for the conspiracy theory that #VoteByMail will corrupt the election."

Trump earlier Monday tweeted “Because of MAIL-IN BALLOTS, 2020 will be the most RIGGED Election in our nations history - unless this stupidity is ended.

“We voted during World War One & World War Two with no problem, but now they are using Covid in order to cheat by using Mail-Ins!”

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Election experts say safeguards exist to prevent the kind of fraud President Donald Trump claims could happen in the 2020 presidential election if the U.S. embraces widespread use of mail-in balloting, reports USA Today. Trump on Monday tweeted: "RIGGED 2020 ELECTION:...
mailinballots, trump, 2020, election
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2020-00-22
Monday, 22 June 2020 06:00 PM
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