Vote Fraud Numbers

Whether you are for him or against him, credit Bill Stephens this being a high profile champion of the Voter ID bill.

I can show 5,412 [instances of people trying to vote by misrepresenting their identity], courtesy of research performed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

According to an investigative report done by the AJC in conjunction with WSB-TV in November of 2000, it showed that 5,412 dead people had voted in Georgia elections since 1980. Some had voted multiple times after death.

The AJC’s own report, dated Nov. 6, 2000, said this was made easier because of a “major loophole” in the old Georgia Voter ID law which allowed people to escape showing photo ID if they claimed they did not have one. They could then sign a paper saying they were who they said they were and be allowed to vote “without delay.”

Voting on behalf of the dead was the perfect crime under the old law, because no one could question your credentials and the only person who could truly dispute your assumed Election Day identity was not available for the proceedings.

That is why even The Atlanta Journal editorial page called for a real photo ID requirement for voting in its editorial the very next day after the story ran.

There is no doubt the photo ID requirement is a step toward a more secure voting system. Even Mexico has photo ID requirements, which President Vicente Fox credits with helping break the 70-year one-party domination of his country.

[Emphasis added]

15 comments

  1. If a family member dies on Oct 1st, 2006, I can most still vote them absentee.

    Also, in the high-number fraud cases mentioned (Chattooga and Dodge county) it wasn’t individuals committing fraud on a one on one level, it was widespread and the county election officers were in on it. If the election administrators want to commit fraud, they still can even with the new Voter ID law. And because the new law didn’t add paper trails to the machines, that fraud will be impossible to catch.

    In summary: The voter ID act is not a bad bill in principle. But claiming it is a heal all fix to the problem of election fraud is like giving out bandaids to the uninsured and then claiming the healthcare crisis is over.

  2. Ben Raspail says:

    Voter fraud is still voter fraud, Chris. The point is, it is still largely committed by Dems. Kudos to Stephens for countering Jay Bookman’s flawed logic.

  3. Erick says:

    Chris, that is wrong. A voter who dies before election day cannot have his or her absentee ballot counted.

    In fact, in a rather famous case in South Georgia, a local election hinged on the vote of a man whose wife found him dead. The Cornorer, if I remember the facts right, determined the time of death was sometime after 7 a.m., so his vote was counted. Had the Coroner determined that the man had died before the polls opened, his vote would have been tossed.

    I’ll check with Cliff Tatum at the Secretary of State’s office to get the details. But, the rule is that if you die before 7a.m. on election day, your absentee ballot will not be counted.

  4. Melb says:

    Voter fraud is never used by republicans and absentee ballots , only Democrats using those damn fishing licenses, driving all over the state to their various estates where they have registered to vote all to undermine those hard-working republicans. Yeah voter fraud is voter fraud so why don’t you do something to fix voter fraud that doesn’t exclude honest voters, or is that to much of a brain teaser.

  5. kspencer says:

    I shouldn’t have been so abrupt – I apologize. Ben, the reason I ask is that most of the time that I’ve pursued such claims (D or R “are the more frequent offender”) it turns out to be either in one specific race/location OR it turns out to be wrong. In the latter case I mean it’s an equal-opportunity fraud. The best example of this – though it’s buying votes, not dead people voting – is the 1996 Dodge County fiasco.

    So if someone can show me a reputable cite source for one party or the other to be largely guilty of fraud by way of dead or false voters for the state, I’d appreciate it. Elsewise I’m going to consider it partisan nonsense – whether it come from R about D, or vice versa.

    Thanks.

  6. Silence says:

    Voter fraud is committed by both parties. In the south, it’s primarily committed by Democrats. However, in other states, such as Nevada, Republicans were found to be the perpetrators. The point is that this is not a partisan issue, it’s just good common sense public policy.

    Chrisis — One note. The voter ID mandate was not meant as a fix all. That is one reason it stood as section 59 of a larger bill. No one would argue that requiring citizens to ID themselves at the poll will fix all of our problems. It is, however, a step in the right direction.

  7. Silence, voter fraud is committed by the party in power on the local level. In the South, it’s been Democratic but I’m sure things will even up as the local offices begin to trend Republican!

    Stephens mentioned the fraud in Dodge (proven) and Chattooga (don’t believe anyone was convicted) but neglected to say how a photo ID requirement would fix things when the elections supervisors themselves are in on the fix.

    Another famous instance of voter fraud occured in Gwinnett. Democrat Donn Peavey represented a portion of Gwinnett and all of Barrow county in the state Senate. On election night in 1986, it appeared that he had lost. But a recount showed that 400 votes were uncounted, and it turned out 400 ballots in a Democratic precinct turned up in a Republican elections official’s trunk!

    Back to my band-aid point though. Until we get a paper trail on those machines no one can say for sure whether or where fraud is being committed.

  8. Also, I know I’m going to get flamed for this, but how can you trust a guy to count the votes in Georgia elections when he can’t even account for the money in his campaign account?

  9. Booray says:

    Chris,

    Being a good Democrat, I was waiting for you (or someone) to mention this.

    Stephens got popped hard by the Ethics Commission for poor disclosures. He’s not the first (governor himself recently) but no use denyin git.

    Whatever he did was unintentional. The Ethics Commission agreed with STephens on that.

    I know this because it was all over the news up here in our neck of the woods (Senate District 27).

    Ithink that’s a legitimate issue in any race for office. I think it’s outweighed by the other strengths Stephens brings to the race. No candidate or any other human being is perfect.

  10. Doc says:

    I applaud Senator Stephens for pointing out this information. If Karen Handel wins the Secretary of State’s race, she should consider hiring Stephens as a press aide.

  11. Mouth of the South says:

    Regarding the problem of a voter dying before the election…By the logic stated above, a voter who dies before election day should not have their vote counted. So everyone who participated in early voting needs to stay alive until election day, or at least until polls open on election day to have their vote “count.” Seems to me there is a huge possibility for fraud here by people voting early when they intend to die before the election. Perhaps they can submit affidavits on election day certifying that they are still alive and that their vote should count. Of course, they would have to go to the election board to submit their affidavits, thus obviating the ease of early voting, but really, voting shouldn’t be about ease. Americans died in overseas conflicts and marched on Selma to win the right to vote, it should be just as hard to vote now as it was then. We should have more obstacles to voting, not less. Everyone should have to bring a notary public to the polls with them. And there should be an obstacle course. Maybe one of those things that rich kids have at their birthday parties that inflated and you would get inside and jump around? Yeah, and ponies, they should be ponies. A wall of ponies could be formed between the door of the polling place and anyone who wants to get in to bvote. If you can’t defeat the wall of ponies, well, you can’t vote.

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