Tea partiers and other GOP sympathizers are claiming that voter fraud is rampant and that they hold legitimate concerns about the fairness of
elections. They've used voter fraud as a way to implement their voter ID laws as well as limiting voting hours except for certain segments of the
population. The question is, just how common is voter fraud? How many cases of proven voter fraud is there out there? Let's look at the few cases out
In Georgia in 2000, 5,412 votes were alleged to have been cast by deceased voters, upon investigation it turned out that it was an error, no
fraudulent votes were found.
In Michigan in 2005, 132 votes were alleged to have been cast by deceased voters, only 8 cases were revealed as substantiated fraud.
In New Jersey in 2004, 4,755 deceased voters were alleged to have cast a ballot. In the end upon investigation it turned out to be a flaw on those
managing the voters list.
In New York in 2002 and 2004, 2,600 deceased voters were alleged to have cast a ballot, again based on a match of voter rolls to death lists, there
turned out to be no voter fraud in the end, upon investigation.
Allegations of voter fraud in the Colorado 2010 midterm elections:
In 2010, Colorado Secretary of State, Scott Gessler (Republican) claimed that 5000 illegal immigrants or ineligible voters may have voted in those
State elections. In the end Gessler could only be certain that 106 individuals, around 2% of his initial 5,000 estimate, who could be accounted for
possible fraudulent voter activity. 106 possible cases of voter fraud is still alot, however to this day Gesslers investigation into actual proven
cases of voter fraud back in 2010 is still inconclusive, so far we're not aware of any proven cases since his initial claim of 5,000 cases:
Convictions of voter fraud in Texas:
With more than 18 million people of voting age, 15 million of whom participated in the 2010 midterms, Texas has the second highest population of
eligible voters in the United States. Despite this number, Texas State attorney general, Greg Abbott ,only reported around 57 convictions of voter
fraud since 2002. Yet even that 57 conviction number has been found to be blown out of proportion as reported by politifact:
Only two cases are described as “voter impersonation” on the list.
Turns out 57 convictions is not accurate at all considering that this figure included 10 pre-trail diversions, 2 acquittals and 4 dismissals.
The 1982 Illinois Governors race:
A Grand Jury along with Illinios Attorney Dan Kebb had estimated that around 100,000 votes were fraudulent during the 1982 governors race, yet only 58
cases of voter fraud were found, probably the largest case to date in the last 30 years.
Between the year 2000-2010:
649 million votes
cast in general elections
Americans killed by lightning
credible cases of in-person voter impersonation
Between 2007-2012, there have thus far only been 86
proven cases, convictions, of voter fraud at the Federal level:
Professor Rick Hasen of UC-Irvine states the obvious on the matter of voter fraud and voter ID laws:
There are “very few documented cases,” said UC-Irvine professor and election law specialist Rick Hasen. “When you do see election fraud, it
invariably involves election officials taking steps to change election results or it involves absentee ballots which voter ID laws can’t prevent,”
Personally I don't see much wrong with asking people to provide I.D to vote provided
this requirement doesn't discrimminate or favour one group
over others (unfortunately many State I.D laws do this) and provided government officials are willing to pay for those without I.D. That being said,
to claim the agenda behind these I.D laws are legitimate, pure, non-partisan, is false. Voter fraud is not rampant, proven cases of voter fraud are
rare, proven cases of voter impersonation are far more rare, most of the allegations of voter fraud turn out to be blown out of proportion
politically motivated. There's no real justification for restricting the voting process at all. Voter fraud does exist, but that doesn't automatically
mean it's rampant in our election process.
I invite any other ATSers present other proven cases of voter fraud, having researched this matter thoroughly I am yet to come across a significant
case in the last 10 or so years.
edit on 25-8-2012 by Southern Guardian because: (no reason given)