Why Establishment Democrats Won’t “Count” Vote Fraud in Florida

(Photo by J.D. Pooley/Getty Images)

Michael Thielen Executive Director, Republican National Lawyers Association
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In just the last four days, numerous stories have broken about vote fraud in Florida.  Actual vote fraud, which according to DC establishment liberals and Democrats is as mythical as a unicorn or worse, a racist ploy.  The stories from Florida this week show the reality of vote fraud from a corrupt election official to an organized scheme to steal an election to 103% voter registration in a corrupt county.  The fact that establishment Democrats refuse to even discuss the problem makes prosecuting vote fraud or stopping it next to impossible.

One of the rare times that Democrats admit that vote fraud occurs is when it is done by individuals, especially election officials.  Thus, Democrats and their allies will gleefully admit that a 74-year-old temporary election official, Gladys Coego, committed vote fraud by marking mail-in ballots in favor of a Republican candidate in the 2016 election.   

To be clear, as the Executive Director of a Republican group dedicated to open, fair, and honest elections, I think she should be punished and strongly, no matter what party’s candidate her fraud helped.  I also feel confident in predicting that all Republicans join me in condemning her actions and she is not welcome in Republican party. 

Compare this to a Democrat election official convicted of fraud a few years back, Melowese Richardson.  Not only were Democrats calling for leniency, they applauded her after she was convicted!  Democrats seemingly reward vote fraud, as shown by the fact that many leading vote fraud deniers committed or oversaw organizations engaged in vote fraud. 

Two more famous examples: leading voter ID opponent Al Sharpton began his political career in a large vote fraud scheme in New York and Justin Levitt, often cited for his study on the rarity of vote fraud, was the general counsel to arguably the most corrupt voter registration group in history, America Coming Together (ACT).  (After a then-record FEC fine, ACT was disbanded in favor of the “less” corrupt ACORN.) 

While Democrats are happy to discuss Ms. Coego’s case, they are less likely to discuss the reality of what is going on in Palm Beach County.  In the third vote fraud case in the last two years, a Democrat election official stated that “about 2000” absentee ballots or requests for absentee ballots were fraudulent.  As the Democrat official explained, they were getting suspect absentee ballots or forms requesting the ballots and she assumed they were sent by offering voters money or gift cards, or by simply forging voters’ signatures.

Putting this in perspective, those 2,000 ballots in just one county would be almost four times the margin in the 2000 presidential election between George W. Bush and Al Gore in Florida. 

But establishment Democrats such as Levitt would not count this as “vote fraud” because there were no convictions.  This is interesting because the State Attorney’s Office found over two dozen cases where they are sure vote fraud was committed but they can’t find a suspect.  Therefore, no prosecutions.  So to the DC Democrats, no fraud occurred. 

Some of the reasons for failing to prosecute are obvious.  Often there is a suspect but no evidence.  Sometimes, as in this case, there is evidence but no suspect.  If the state attorneys went ahead with a prosecution, they would be called racist (if the suspect or the candidates who benefited are African American), accused of being partisan, and blamed for wasting resources that could be spent on more serious crimes.   

The less obvious reason prosecutors have a hard time bringing cases involving voting is because a key item of the crime, the voter registration lists, are in such bad shape.  In a famous, well-researched case that uncovered a massive vote fraud scheme in Wisconsin that resulted in zero convictions, a bipartisan group of prosecutors noted “widespread record keeping failures and separate areas of voter fraud and concluded: . . . Without accurate records, the task force will have difficulty proving criminal conduct beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.”

Another county in Florida, Broward, is a prime example of how hard it is to get a county to clean up voting lists.  Once again, establishment Democrats fight such efforts calling them racist and “vote purging.” 

This argument is ridiculous.  Even President Obama’s Presidential Commission on Election Administration supported such voter list maintenance.  Anyone wrongly removed can vote a provisional ballot and have their vote counted if they were wrongly removed from the voter registration lists. 

The reality is Broward has no interest in accurate lists as shown by the presence of a 130-year-old and thousands of voters over 100 on the voter registration rolls.  In fact, an impossible 103% of eligible age voters are registered.  The situation is so bad that American Civil Rights Union (ACRU) was in court yesterday fighting to force Broward to do its job as required by federal law, in a part of the National Voter Registration Act or “Motor Voter” Act. 

Establishment Democrats know this all goes hand and hand.  Repeat ad nauseum that vote fraud is rare because of the lack of convictions.  Make convictions impossible to obtain by inaccurate voter lists.  Attack all efforts to clean up voter lists.  Call all who try to stop this racists, only interested in disenfranchising minorities. 

All this ignores that no one is disenfranchised by accurate voting lists but all, including African Americans, are disenfranchised by vote fraud.  Just ask African-American Democrat politician Priscilla Taylor who won on election day only to lose after fraudulent absentee ballots were counted: “We all felt that there was fraud going on.”  Taylor was the victim of the fraudulent absentee ballots cast and ballot requests in Palm Beach County.  Yet because there is no suspect, the prosecution is being dropped despite evidence of fraud and Taylor—and all citizens who honestly voted for her—is left without a remedy.

Drain the DC swamp of the Democrat vote fraud deniers.