Rolling Stone debunks all the Republican ‘voter fraud’ myths being used as an excuse to suppress the vote with ID laws on Election Day:
“But here’s the thing: Not only is voter fraud not rampant – it’s virtually nonexistent. The iron-clad word on the subject comes from the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, whose 2007 report, ‘The Truth About Voter Fraud,’ sorts through thousands of allegations going back to the 1990s in the most in-depth voter fraud study ever undertaken. The bottom line, confirmed by all subsequent research: ”Usually, only a tiny portion of the claimed illegality is substantiated — and most of the remainder is either nothing more than speculation or has been conclusively debunked.”"
- Double voting – In Missouri in 2000 and 2002, hundreds of voters were alleged to have voted twice either within the state or once in Kansas and once in Missouri. Reporters followed up on 18 Kansas City; 13 were shown to result from clerical errors. In total, public sources backed up only four cases, for a documented fraud rate of 0.0003 percent
- Voting by Dead People – An investigation turned up only one instance, and even this was later found to have been an error: One Alan J. Mandel was alleged to have voted in 1998, despite having died in 1997. It turned out that another Alan J. Mandell (two “l”s) – very much alive – was the guy who’d voted, but election workers simply checked the wrong name off of their list.
- Voting With Fraudulent Addresses – In New Hampshire, a citizen became concerned because 88 individuals had registered with residences on property owned by Daniel Webster College. Further investigation revealed that all 88 were DW students living on college property.
- Voting by Convicted Felons — In 2000, Florida claimed that 5,643 ineligible persons with convictions actually voted in the general election. Upon investigation, it turned out the data included eligible citizens with misdemeanors, citizens with convictions after their valid vote, and eligible voters whose names and birthdates matched those of convicted felons.
- Voting by Noncitizens — In Washington in 2005, county officials were asked to investigate the citizenship status of 1,668 registered voters based on their “foreign-sounding names.” Not a single individual on the submitted list turned out to be a noncitizen.
- Registration Fraud — “Most reports of registration fraud do not actually claim that the fraud happens so that ineligible people can vote at the polls. Indeed, we are aware of no recent substantiated case in which registration fraud has resulted in fraudulent votes being cast.”
- Voting by Dogs — There is no typical case. Brennan found only two cases – ever – of ballots being submittted in the name of a dog: a ballot cast by “Duncan MacDonald” in 2006 and 2007 (but labeled “VOID” and signed with a paw print), and another cast by “Raku Bowman” in 2003 in a local election in Venice, California.
- Vote Buying — Vote buying is not fraud – it’s an illegal agreement between citizens, usually with the direct involvement of a candidate or campaign – and can’t be addressed by most of the remedies put forward to tackle fraud – photo ID laws, restrictions on registration, etc.
- Fraud by Election Officials — Fraud by election officials does happen, but, like vote-buying, it is not a form of voter fraud. If election officials are willing to break the law, rules designed to restrict voting won’t stop them.