The existence of widespread, intentional voter suppression is another Big Lie, a preposterous assertion repeated so authoritatively and so frequently that it is widely believed. Here’s the reality.
Normally, voting is designed to protect the privacy of the voter and the integrity of the vote. Arizona voters are protected from electioneering within 75 feet of the polling station. Once inside, their identity is confirmed with a picture ID.
They are then checked with a list of registered voters eligible at the site. The vote is cast in privacy, without interference, unless physical assistance is warranted. The ballot finally is securely transmitted to election officials for counting.
With a mail ballot, nobody knows what happens. Ballots are sent by USPS to names on a registration list which is known to be corrupted with outdated and ineligible voters. If the ballot is not intercepted, whoever gets the ballot may still be intimidated or coerced by others.
Ballots may be filled out by pretty much anyone. No identification is ever required. The ballot is merely returned with a witnessed signature.
The Left and their media wingmen insist that voter fraud virtually doesn’t exist. Wrong again. The evidence is plentiful that fraud and vote buying are endemic, even part of the political culture in some areas.
It starts with bloated voter rolls, which states are forbidden by federal law to maintain adequately. Consequently, 24 million registrations nationally are inaccurate.
In fact, 244 counties have more registered voters then are legally eligible and 29 have more registered voters then legal residents. 3 million voters are registered in more than one state. To expose this leaky system, New York investigators successfully cast 61 illegal votes in 63 attempts, due to flawed voter rolls.
But the elephant in the room is mail voting, an open invitation to fraud. The safeguards taken at polling stations, such as voter ID, are meaningless when there are much simpler and safer alternatives for fraud commission.
Mail fraud is the perfect crime because it is almost impossible to detect. Mail ballots are completed behind closed doors where observers from each side are unable to monitor the process. Meanwhile, voters whose votes have been stolen by fraud are incapable of sensing the loss.
Moreover, election officials are typically not very aggressive in rooting out fraud. Fraud cases are a black mark on their record. Prosecuting fraud can be politically risky. From their perspective, there’s no reason to seek out extra trouble. Some officials are okay with it anyway for partisan reasons.
The ultimate safeguard of mailed ballot integrity is signature matching, an uncertain process at best. Mistakes are inevitable, since signatures are never identical. Names change and signatures deteriorate, especially with people facing age or disability issues.
Just in the past month, an entire election was invalidated in New Jersey because of rampant mail fraud and 10,000 mailed ballots were rejected in Michigan, because voters had moved, died or their signatures did not match.
In Oregon, a supposed voter Nirvana with mail only elections, 5% of voters in one county admitted “other people mark their ballots”, a figure which must be low because most people wouldn’t confess.
The problems with postal voting go beyond widespread fraud. Nationally, 28 million ballots mailed since 2012 have simply vanished. Mail ballots often cause delays in reporting of election results. The result is confusion and chaos, which will worsen if the Left forces more extensive use of mail.
But the most egregious threat of all to ballot integrity is ballot harvesting, legally practiced in 27 states, including Arizona, where any third party can pick up and deliver ballots to election officials.
The potential for abuse is beyond obvious. Harvesters are known to sometimes deliver only the “correct“ ballots. They can and do pressure voters to accept their “help” in voting. Seniors, including nursing homes, are particularly popular targets. There is no excuse for this stain on our elections.
There is simply no evidence that fraud prevention reduces voter turnout or minority voting. On the contrary, the right to vote, and to have your vote count, is foundational to America’s epic struggle for equality. Every vote canceled by fraud corrupts the entire electoral process.
Dr. Thomas Patterson was chairman of the Goldwater Institute from 2000 to July 2015. He was elected to the Arizona State Senate in 1989, serving as minority leader from 1991 to 1992 and majority leader from 1993 to 1996. Patterson was the author of legislation creating Arizona’s charter school system and welfare reform program. Until 1998, he was a practicing physician and president of Emergency Physicians, Inc.
Dr. Patterson also served as president of the Arizona chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians. He is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Nebraska.