We Must End Voter Intimidation and Fraud

We Must End Voter Intimidation and Fraud

We Must End Voter Intimidation and Fraud

Yesterday, two things happened that raised my concerns about the upcoming election. No, it wasn’t having to choose between Trump and Biden. My mind has been made up for a long time. Instead, I saw a town officials refusing to follow the instructions of their own elections board to remove symbols voters felt were inappropriate (read intimidating) from the local polling place. Then there was my family’s first-hand encounter with how easy it is to commit voter fraud when it comes to mail-in ballots. Both incidents simply firmed up my resolve to not only vote in person but to do all I can to make sure every registered voter I know does the same thing.

Let’s start with a very obvious attempt by what can easily be called official interference in an election. Carrboro, North Carolina isn’t just any small town. In the message from the mayor on its website, the town is described as “a progressive haven and a remarkable example of a diverse, exciting town with a difficult to articulate but easy to feel identity.” From that, you can probably guess what sort of message it was sending at the polling place that had election officials voicing their concern.

To be clear, Black Lives Matter flags were being flown from the building where the early voting was taking place. After receiving complaints, some of which included photos, N.C State Board of Elections Executive Director Karen Brinson Bell sent the following to the Carrboro’s elected officials, including the mayor:

The flags are attached to the front of the one-stop site and therefore could be interpreted as an official endorsement by the board of elections in favor of a particular movement. . .  While these flags may be a supported symbol of the Town of Carrboro, the one-stop early voting site is open to any Orange County voter and therefore the site must provide the opportunity for all voters to exercise their right to vote without intimidation or hindrance.”

So, BLM flags were flown at the ONLY voting location in town. The State Board of Elections felt it could be seen as an “official endorsement” of a particular movement or point of view. The polling site served more than just the town. And there is a right to vote without hindrance or intimidation. Sounds pretty good and very reasonable, right?

Not according to those elected officials. Here’s their response:

After consulting with the town attorney, the Mayor and Town Council have chosen to leave the flags in place.”

So, these officials brazenly defy the State Board of Elections. They place their town’s “message” above the law. And they obviously have no problem intimidating voters who don’t agree with that message or, at the very least, making them feel uncomfortable. Nor do they have any problem doing this to people who did NOT vote for them and who do NOT live in Carrboro.

You have to wonder if they’d feel the same way if the flags flying were the Gadsdan flag or even Back the Blue flags. Then you have to wonder what their next step in official voter interference or intimidation might be.

But that’s not the end of my adventures down the voter fraud avenue.

Yesterday, my almost 90-year-old mother received her mail-in ballot for next week’s election. It only took 14 days from the time she sent in her request to vote by mail to receive the ballot. That’s the problem when you mix state bureaucracy and the USPS. But that, along with the ballot process itself, points out the ease of committing voter fraud and why it is so important to not only check on the status of your ballot if you are voting by mail but to seriously consider actually voting in person.

We live in the great state of Texas. Becuase of that, we’ve seen more than our fair share of liberals whining and gnashing their teeth, even going to court over our voter ID laws. Now, the law is simple. You have to show an approved form of photo ID to vote. If you don’t, you cast what is called a provisional ballot that isn’t counted until it has been verified. Oh, and it doesn’t have to be a driver’s license. For the sum of a grand total of $5 (when I last checked), you could get a state issued ID card that was more than adequate for your voting purposes.

In other words, it isn’t a huge financial burden. It costs less than most anything on the menu at Starbucks and far less than a six pack of beer.

However–and this is a big however–that voter ID requirement goes out the window when it comes to voting by mail down here. When you request a mail-in ballot, here in TX you have to meet certain requirements. You have to be in the military, in jail, out of town or over 65 and/or infirm. You fill out the request, swear (without having it witnessed) that you meet one of these requirements, sign it and mail off the request. Then you wait for you request to be approved and your ballot mailed to you.

We did so with Mom and it took 15 days for her application to work through the process and the ballot to reach her. which it did yesterday. Under TX law, as long as the ballot is postmarked by Tuesday and received at the election office by 5pm Wednesday, the ballot will count.

Maybe.

Here’s my concern with mail-in ballots after having first-hand experience with one. There is no attempt to prove the registered voter is actually the person who filled it out and mailed it. Oh, the state does lip service to it, but it is laughable. Especially for a state with voter ID laws.

Did Mom have to include a copy of her photo ID?

No.

Did she have to include her drivers license number or any other personal identification numbers?

No.

In fact, the closest she came to having to prove who she was happened when she requested her ballot. Then she had to give her date of birth.

Guess how they verify you are the person who asked for the ballot? They verify–and I use that term loosely–your signiture. Which brings up a question we ran into. Mom couldn’t remember how she signed her name. Did she sign it with her middle initial or with that middle name spelled out? She couldn’t remember and I didn’t know. So she signed it the way it showed on her ballot. Which may or may not be the same.

Then there’s the next issue. You sign the ballot on the OUTSIDE OF THE FRIGGING ENVELOPE! So it can become wet and smear. You sign over the area where the flap seals to the back of the envelope so you have that little impediment. You might sign with a different pen than you used before. If the person eyeballing your ballot and comparing it to your application doesn’t think your signatures match, your ballot is not counted unless you challenge it.

But how do you know to challenge it? You have to follow the progress of your ballot on-line. Now, how many people who have to vote by mail because they are elderly or infirm are going to follow it online? Hell’s bells, how many know they need to? The same can be said for any of the others who qualify to vote absentee.

How many ballots will be discarded simply because the signature doesn’t match?

Before you say we didn’t have to mail the ballot back in, that we could have hand delivered it, you’re right. But here’s the catch with that. In Texas, we are allowed only one drop-off location per county. Frankly, I’m all for that. Why? Because if you drop the ballot off, you have to show ID when you do so. The problem, however, is getting there.

After discussing it, Mom and I decided we’d mail the ballot back. So I made sure I had it to the local post office well before the final collection of the day. I will be tracing it via the online portal and, if it hasn’t reached the elections office by Tuesday, I will take her up to the local YMCA to vote (somehow, most of my neighbors haven’t figured out they can vote there.)

So yes, Virginia, there is the potential of voter fraud. Not just in Texas but around the country, especially when it comes to vote by mail. Don’t fall for the propaganda the WaPo is pitching when it claims the only voter fraud being committed is by those claiming there is voter fraud. A very quick online search brought up stories posted in the last week from Dupage County, Illinois, Bexar County, TX and others concerning potential incidents of voter fraud. There are many others.

But even the internet search returns are skewed in an attempt to convince us that voting by mail is as safe, if not safer, than voting in person. Don’t buy into it. For once, I agree with Amy Klobuchar that we should vote in person. I do NOT, however, agree with her reasoning.

No, the Republicans aren’t trying to make it harder to vote. They are trying to make sure local, state and national voting laws are followed. That’s something the Dems have a hard time accepting.

Remember that. Don’t sit back and think your vote won’t matter. Ignore the polls. Ignore the denials of voter fraud existing. Get out and do your civic duty by voting. Let your voice be heard. Make sure your vote is counted. This is very possibly the most important election of your lifetime. It is a vote for the very future of our country.

Stand up. Speak out. Vote!

 

Featured Image by amberzen from Pixabay

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8 Comments
  • My experience in Travis County, TX (No, Austin… isn’t located in “Austin County”… despite their best efforts to make it so… we are still Travis County).

    I relocated a few months before the “Great Pandemic” (All hail the wonderful Dr. Faucci!!), and had yet to swap my driver’s license from AZ (perk of being a Military Dependent, I kept my license. Also a huge dose of “No effs” to give about the 5 other states between being a resident of AZ and retirement). If you have an AZ DL you understand… that baby is valid until 2032. So, I’m wedging in a time to get my TX DL, then boom! Everything shuts down to a trickle.

    But, I still need to register to vote (or opt for Absentee in AZ, but eh. I wanted in person). Where and how to do this…? The Post Office, of course. I fill out and immediately send off my registration.
    Crickets. Check on-line voter portal. Nada.
    Then, the mail arrives.. not my Voter ID, but the card asking to resubmit my application because they couldn’t verify.
    I again write my Social. My full name. My AZ DL number. My home address.
    Weeks go by. More Crickets. A virtual symphony joined in with the big bass of locusts.
    I have no Voter ID number.
    I grab my Military ID, AZ DL, Passport, property tax bill, Municipal utility district bill and before dashing out to vote I send off an email to the board of elections with a big “WTF else do you people need?”.
    I arrive at my polling place and present my problem to the “referee” of sorts, the election judge. Not really a judge but the overseer of all things election polling site.
    I am not in the system. I share my ID’s, bills, etc.
    Guess what happened?!
    They gave me a provisional ballot. I voted. Then it went into an envelope to be held by the board of elections until it could be verified. But I still voted, had the means to contact the board and check on my status.
    Nobody sent me away. I have my valuable organs and my kids, so no ransom required.
    I voted.
    The following Monday (I voted on a Sunday… yeah so hard to vote it was open 7 days a week!) my Voter ID number arrived in my email box.
    My vote will be counted.
    It’s really NOT that hard.
    I mean, think about the daily things that are not allowed to be provisional.
    ~Screening through TSA
    ~Applying for Social Security
    ~Buying Sudafed at Target
    Incidentally, my husband swiped his Texas ID at the window, and promptly voted. It was easier than getting cash from an ATM. Voter ID requirements are AWESOME and even though I had to jump some hurdles (of my own making), it was still a painless process.

    • Well, we could have used your vote back here, Narcissi… But I agree, you should vote where you live (or where your roots are when you are a base bouncer).

      You do still have to get a new picture every twelve years here in AZ. Fortunately, I got the notice and did that JUST before the insanity hit – I’m unable to sit long enough in a mask for a haircut, so I only look like a child predator – not a homeless child predator (grin).

    • GWB says:

      Good on you, Narcissi! And you went through that effort because… you care about being a citizen!

  • Scott says:

    Seems pretty clear to me.. Look at the two fools the Dems are running.. Even taking into account all the idiots with TDS, the ONLY way the dems can win with that ticket is voter fraud. I’d bet my next paycheck that just like during the obama elections, there will be areas with more votes than registered voters (guess which candidates those areas will favor), and areas where 100% of the vote goes to one party (same guess applies)..
    As to the BLM flags, you’re right, it is completely inappropriate, and the election board and state AG should take immediate legal action against the town and all involved with ignoring the law. That being said, with we conservatives not being snowflakes, we should be energized rather than intimidated by such displays. They are making it obvious what they think of us, and what they will continue to do should they gain / remain in power. Seeing that level of disrespect by government to us “deplorables” should motivate us to vote, and encourage everyone we know to do the same, and not give in to fatigue, or disdain for President Trumps personal behavior / tweeting habits, but rather to recognize the threat we are facing, and do what we can to stop it!

  • carlton mckenney says:

    AND consider:
    The USPS is a union shop. The leaders of the Postal Union have stated on the record that they expect all their members to vote Democratic. And this is the organization that is charged with transporting the ballots from the voter to the local election board. Yeah, right. And the fox will transport the chickens from the coop to the roost with no losses in transit.

  • Anna A says:

    That problem in Carrboro, NC doesn’t surprise me one bit. It was there that I got my first taste of untrustworthy politicians.

    The time, late 70’s early 80’s. We were voting on city government and the top 2 or 3 made it. No national parties, but coalitions. A number of us were trying to get the more liberals out and more conservatives in. One of the men, who had been liberal had a “come to Jesus” moment and changed sides. Being popular (and possibly an incumbent) he was one of the top vote getters. But as soon as the election was over, and he was siting on the city council, he started voting liberal again, so once again they had a 3 to 2 majority.

    Am I cynical? Yes, do I vote every election and I even work the polls

  • GWB says:

    There is no attempt to prove the registered voter is actually the person who filled it out and mailed it.
    Did Mom have to include a copy of her photo ID?
    Did she have to include her drivers license number or any other personal identification numbers?
    Neither of those things would prove diddly on a mailed-in ballot anyway. (And would open the voter up to exposing their PII.)

    The one time I’ve voted absentee since leaving the military, I voted in-person, at the registrar’s office. Aside from invalids and those on long-term travel, I think all absentee should be done in person. (And I think you can even do the rest mostly in person, too. Yes, even the military. If you take it seriously, that is.)

    You sign over the area where the flap seals to the back of the envelope so you have that little impediment.
    Ummmm, that’s actually a feature, not a bug. It’s so that someone steaming open your envelope will find it nearly impossible to put it back together exactly correctly. It’s not foolproof, but it’s pretty good.
    (I prefer a 2-envelope method, where you sign over the inner envelope seal, and the outer envelope is protected by some other tamper-proof seal.)

    how many know they need to?
    Sounds like some voter education needs to take place. Voters being ignorant is the problem, not that procedures are required. Tracking your ballot online could be a great anti-fraud mechanism for even in-person voting. (Get home after voting, pull up your app/website, plug in your info, and it shows “Hey, you voted in-person! Great job. That ballot box is not yet full.” (Or some other status.)

    we are allowed only one drop-off location per county
    I thought a judge stopped that? (And in Texas – as opposed to VA, for instance – I can actually see having more than one, as long as they are manned and such.) I’m curious as to why the ballot can’t be dropped off at a voting location? Wouldn’t that be secure enough? Or too few to handle, and therefore insecure? (Somebody will forget and leave it on the table or something.)

    there is the potential of voter fraud
    Well, yeah. There’s always the potential for fraud. But they are lazy and want the easiest way to commit fraud – hence mail-in ballots.

    Let your voice be heard.
    Amen! Care enough to put in some effort. If you can’t be bothered to get off your butt and get to the polls, then “may your chains rest lightly upon you.”

  • GWB says:

    Oh, I will admit I am also VERY spoiled living where I do. The polling place (except for a couple of years while they rebuilt after a fire) is a church that is literally two blocks from my house. (The alternate location was the middle school my son would have attended had we not homeschooled, and closer than driving to the grocery store – by two blocks.)

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