Voter Fraud Is Rare – and in This Cycle, It's All Been Committed by Republicans

Election '16

Voter Fraud is exceedingly rare. A study by a consortium of journalism schools found only 867 proven cases in the United States since 2000. Democrats have been guilty in the past, but in 2012, all the fraud has apparently been on the Republican side of the aisle.

Patrick Moran, son of Democratic Rep Jim Moran, resigned after he got caught in a James O-Keefe sting operation. An undercover cameraman asked him how he could bring in a busload of fraudulent voters. In the video, Moran tries to talk the guy out of it. He suggests he'd do better working on traditional get out the vote efforts. But then, because he's an idiot, Moran relents and offers him some tips. Moran says he didn't think the guy was serious. He's since resigned. In any event, the entrapment worked politically but no actual fraud occurred.

For Republicans, it's a different story. The Las Vegas Sun:

Investigators today arrested a Southern Nevada woman suspected of trying to vote twice this week at two different polling locations.

Roxanne Rubin was taken into custody as she arrived for work at the Riviera hotel-casino, investigators said. Rubin, 56, is a registered Republican who lives in Henderson, according to the Clark County Registrar.

Rubin allegedly cast a vote Monday at the Anthem Community Center in Henderson. Later that day, she tried to vote a second time at an early voting location on Eastern Avenue, investigators said.

Willamette Week:

A Clackamas County elections worker is undercriminal investigation for tampering with ballots, WW has learned. 

The underlying allegation is that the woman, whose name has not been released, filled in blanks on ballots turned into the county for the Nov. 6 general election. 

Sources familiar with the incident say their understanding is that the woman filled in a straight Republican ticket on the ballots where preferences had been left blank by voters.

Elections law makes marking another person's ballot a class C felony. 

Huffington Post:

Four campaign staffers of former Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R-Mich) face multiple criminal charges of allegedly perpetuating election fraud...

An investigation by Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette charged four members of McCotter's Livonia office with violating election laws by submitting fraudulent petition signatures to qualify Congressman McCotter for the 2012 Michigan ballot, the AG said Thursday.

"This was not simply Keystone Cops run amok –- serious criminal acts were committed," said Schuette in a press release. “In this case, the process of obtaining signatures and filing petitions to participate in the democratic process was perverted."

Talking-Points Memo:

It was one of the few — if not the only — coordinated efforts to attempt in-person voter fraud, and it was pulled off by affiliates of conservative activist James O’Keefe at polling places in New Hampshire Tuesday night. All of it part of an attempt to prove the need for voter ID laws that voting rights experts say have a unfair impact on minority voters.

Now election law experts tell TPM that O’Keefe’s allies could face criminal charges on both the federal and state level for procuring ballots under false names, and that his undercover sting doesn’t demonstrate a need for voter ID laws at all.

Federal law bans not only the casting of, but the “procurement” of ballots “that are known by the person to be materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent under the laws of the State in which the election is held.”

Hamline University law professor David Schultz told TPM that there’s “no doubt” that O’Keefe’s investigators violated the law.

No charges were brought here.

Massachussets Republican:

A judge set a $10,000 cash bail forEnrico "Jack" Villamaino, after after the former East Longmeadow selectman pleaded innocent to a 12-count election fraud indictment.

About 18 hours after being arrested at his job at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Boston and spending the night in the East Longmeadow Police Department holding cell, Villamaino appeared for his arraignment in Hampden Superior Court on Wednesday morning.

Wearing a blue blazer, his hands cuffed behind his back, the 35-year-old Republican candidate for a state representative seat in the 2nd Hampden District showed no emotion as Hampden district attorney Mark Mastroianni outlined a complex ballot-tampering scheme that also involved Villamaino's new wife and co-defendant, Courtney Llewellyn.

Here's one that came to light this year. Houston Chronicle:

A Republican precinct chairman running for a seat on the Fort Bend County Commissioner's Court has cast ballots in both Texas and Pennsylvania in the last three federal elections, official records in both states show.

Bruce J. Fleming, a Sugar Land resident running for Precinct 1 commissioner, voted in person in Sugar Land in 2006, 2008 and 2010 and by mail in each of those years in Yardley, Pa., according to election records in both states.

Talking-Points Memo:

A Pennsylvania man employed by a company working for the Republican Party of Virginia was arrested by investigators from the Rockingham County Sheriff’s office on Thursday and charged with destroying voter registration forms.

Colin Small, a 23-year-old resident of Phoenixville, Pa., worked for Pinpoint, a company hired to register voters on behalf of the Republican Party of Virginia. Prosecutors charged him with four counts of destruction of voter registration applications, eight counts of failing to disclose voter registration applications and one count of obstruction of justice.

That story has since expanded. The Raw Story:

A third instance of fraudulent voter registration has been uncovered in the important swing state of Virginia, where a Republican consultant has been arrested and thousands of discarded voter registration forms were recovered from a dumpster earlier this week. According to the Not Larry Sabato blog, a law student at James Madison University registered to vote on campus, but found when she tried to verify the change online, found that her form had never been submitted.

“She stopped to fill out a voter registration form to change her voting address from her parents house in Fairfax to her dorm address in Harrisonburg so she could vote in person on election day,” wrote [Not Larry Sabato blogger Ben] Trippett.  ”On Wednesday night Lucy went online to check her voter registration status and found out she had not been registered in Harrisonburg- meaning whoever was collecting her form on campus had not turned it in.”

This makes James Madison the third Virginia location where operatives have collected voter registration forms and disposed of them.  According to the blog, the registration forms recovered from the dumpster were completed at “a local street festival and  a registration at the local community college.”

And is linked to what some are calling the “GOP's ACORN scandal” in Florida. Brad Friedman:

The Republican Party of Florida’s top recipient of 2012 expenditures, a firm by the name of Strategic Allied Consulting, was just fired on Tuesday night, after more than 100 apparently fraudulent voter registration forms were discovered to have been turned in by the group to the Palm Beach County, FL Supervisor of Elections.

The firm appears to be another shell company of Nathan Sproul, a longtime, notorious Republican operative, hired year after year by GOP Presidential campaigns, despite being accused of shredding Democratic voter registration forms in a number of states over several past elections.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Strategic Allied Consulting has been paid some $667,000 this year by the Florida GOP, presumably to run its voter registration campaigns in the state. That number, however, does not account for another identical payment made in August. The Palm Beach Post is reporting tonight that the firm received “more than $1.3 million” from the Republican Party of Florida “to register new voters.”

The firm is not only tied to the Florida GOP, but also to the Mitt Romney Campaign, which hired Sproul as a political consultant late last year, despite years of fraud allegations against his organizations in multiple states.

Moreover, the firm is also reportedly operating similar voter registration operations on behalf of the Republican Party, to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars, in a number of key battleground states this year, including North Carolina, Virginia and Colorado. Strategic Allied has recently taken steps to hide their ownership by Sproul’s notorious firm, Sproul & Associates.

If I've missed any – especially any cases involving Democrats – send me an email and I'll update this post.

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