Guest Post By Nancy Matthis at ADMC

The election of 2008 promises to be an all-out battle throughout the country for the soul of America. Will we continue to be a nation of individuals who pride themselves on personal responsibility? Or will we keep sliding deeper into increasing government entitlement programs (and meddling) on the path to socialism?

The answer will largely be determined by the outcomes of the 435 hard-fought Congressional races throughout the United States. And in many of those races, the margin of victory or loss on average may be less than three percent. Which is to say that illegal aliens may decide the future of our democracy.

Our voting processes are deeply flawed. For quite some time the problem of voter fraud has been discussed, but tolerated. The website Illegal Aliens US comments:

Those ‘undocumented’ are actually ‘highly documented’ with fraudulent documents our government readily accepts.


Because of virtually no vote fraud enforcement, motor voter registration, driver’s licenses for illegal aliens, amnesties and other factors, America’s most precious liberty, voting, is being rapidly undermined by illegal aliens.

The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) reports:

In 1996, Congress enacted the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act, making it a federal crime for non-citizens to vote in any federal election (or state election, unless authorized by state law). As a penalty, ineligible non-citizens who knowingly vote may be deported. Additionally, a non-citizen who falsely claims to be a United States citizen is in violation of this law.

However, there are many documented reports of non-citizen voting, and there is no evidence of prosecution of the aliens for their action. With nearly 19 million foreign-born residents who are not U.S. citizens in the country in the 2000 Census and an estimated 9-11 million illegal residents (many of them not also counted in the Census), the potential is enormous for non-citizens to affect the outcome of elections.

Accuracy in Media adds:

A recent study released by the conservative think-tank the Heritage Foundation provides proof that illegal aliens and immigrants with green cards are committing rampant voter fraud in the United States.

Just last week, Libertarian Republican posted about a specific case in San Antonio:

300 busted in San Antonio — Illegal Immigrants have been voting in US Elections for decades. California most especially has been plagued by hundreds of thousands of illegals voting in elections. Republicans have alledged for years that Democrats have undertaken massive voter registration drives of Illegals in heavily Mexican neighborhoods around Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego County and other Border regions. Even Mid-Western States such as Ohio and Missouri have also seen problems with Illegal Immigrant voting. Now, Texas has been hit….

Specific Components of the Problem

1) By all estimates, the 1993 federal Motor Voter law is the biggest concern. It mandates that states allow people to register to vote when they get a driver’s license. And 47 states don’t require any proof of U.S. residence for enrollment.

2) For states that require some form of identification at the polling place, driver’s licenses are always accepted. And up to the present time, those can easily be finessed, obtained through bribery or forged. You will recall that seven of the 9-11 hijackers used fake driver’s licenses to board the planes. One of the terrorists used a bypass code to get a California license without a social security number.

Nawaf Alhazmi …. used a loophole, since closed, in California law that allowed hundreds of thousands of foreign drivers without Social Security numbers to use a generic number in its place…. Although the process changed a year ago, some of the drivers still have their original licenses… …a 1994 court decision required the state to also give driver’s licenses to qualified applicants, such as foreign students, who had no Social Security number…. 184,000 such licenses were issued between 12/2000 and 2/2002.

Security technologist Bruce Schneier reminds us:

Three of the 9/11 terrorists had valid Virginia driver’s licenses in fake names, after bribing a DMV clerk.

For those who can’t finesse the system or bribe a state employee, there is always forgery. And it is rampant. Just this week, reports US Border Control, a California man was charged with running a fake ID factory in a rented room:

Police have arrested Luis Alberto Montana, 44, and charged him with renting a room in a Watsonville, California home and running a document factory there, producing a variety of ID cards…. Evidence seized included sheets of blank social security cards, immigration cards, driver’s licenses, W-2 forms as well as completed cards, including driver’s licenses from California, Arizona, Oregon and California license plate stickers, Matriculas and resident alien cards, according to police.

So much for authentic identification.

3) Many jurisdictions allow people to vote based on property deeds, rent receipts or utility bills. That may be a fair indication that those folk live in the voting district, but says nothing about their eligibility to vote! The Northwest Indiana Times lists some of the documents that will work:

…the state-required residency documents, such as a child support check, current utility bill, property deed….

And, as we observed in an earlier article, lots of illegals own property. Many more have rent receipts. The only cases where such papers might be scarce are those (quite numerous) where several families share a rented apartment.

4) In a Wall Street Journal article, John Fund notes:

The Justice Department has often blocked states from weeding out people who have died or changed addresses. That’s important because in most states you don’t have to show photo identification to vote, making it quite easy for someone to vote in someone else’s name.

Even when big government does not interfere, precincts are notoriously lax in updating their rolls.

5) The manipulation of absentee ballots is another source of voter fraud. In 2005, the Detroit News cited:

The national average for voting by absentee ballots is 14 percent, according to the United States Election Assistance Commission…

On a nationwide scale, that’s a lot of room to move! Twenty-six states permit any registered voter to vote by absentee ballot. In these states voters are not even required to state a reason for voting by absentee ballot. It’s “convenience voting.” Oregon has taken it to the limit. Oregon conducts all elections solely by mail ballot, and has eliminated the expense and manpower requirements of maintaining polling places.

From My San Antonio News comes this gem:

Four Duval County residents have been indicted by a Brooks County grand jury and charged with illegally handling ballot applications and mail-in ballots that belonged to other voters … according to the state attorney general’s office.

The charge of possessing and handling the ballot of another person is a … violation of the Texas Election Code. The four San Diego residents indicted Thursday were Lydia Molina, 70; Maria “Kena” Soriano, 71; Elva Lazo, 62; and Maria Trigo, 55….

Check out those last names. What border do you think they came across?

6) Nursing homes are another prime source of legitimate voter names that can be manipulated. And from what population of day laborers might all those low-paying service jobs in the nursing homes be filled? The attendants, janitorial staff, groundskeepers?

In Alabama, the Montgomery Advertiser discloses:

Sadly, the use of absentee ballots to commit voting fraud has been well documented in Alabama in past elections. While many people used absentee ballots legitimately, past court cases have disclosed numerous instances where the outcomes of elections have been skewed by people who manipulate absentee ballots in one way or another…. Residents of nursing homes have legitimately filed for absentee ballots only to find that someone else had already filed in their name….

And the state of Florida, as a retirement destination, has a disproportionate senior population. Nursing home fraud is pervasive:

In 1998, the mayoral election in Miami was thrown out after it was learned “vote brokers” had signed hundreds of phony absentee ballots…. “In this area there’s a pattern of nursing-home administrators frequently forging ballots under residents’ names,” says Sean Cavanagh, a Democratic county supervisor who uncovered the scandal. He believes law enforcement turns a blind eye to voter fraud in many other places….

7) State-wide voting, rather than precinct voting, increases the chance for fraud. The poster child for “dead souls” is Maryland:

It should normally be difficult to pick the worst state legislature in America, but Maryland’s is way out in front…. Democratic legislators … passed three election-related bills and again mustered the necessary three-fifths votes to overturn his [GOP Gov. Bob Ehrlich, 2006] vetoes. Together the election laws would so weaken safeguards against voter fraud as to make Maryland the nation’s prime example of Election Day irresponsibility….

The most troublesome bill undermines the concept of local polling places by allowing all voters to vote anywhere in Maryland using a provisional ballot. Gilles Burger, chairman of the state’s Board of Elections, flatly says the bill invites fraud. His testimony prompted the Beall commission to warn that it would mean “a provisional ballot could be cast successfully in multiple counties and not be detected until after the votes were certified.”

As you can see, there are two factors in the danger of state-wide voting. First is the lack of local scrutiny regarding eligibility. Second is the potential for using the same ID in multiple precincts.

8) Incredibly, there are jurisdictions that do not require any identification at all at the polling place:

…California and many other states don’t require voters to show any identification at the polls. This continues at a time when you have to show photo ID to cash a check, board an airplane or even get a library card. Those under age 27 now have to show ID to buy cigarettes, but not to vote.

California? Er, Mexifornia? The home of sanctuary cities?

9) Rushing the naturalization process also leads to large numbers of ineligible individuals getting the opportunity to vote:

Some politicians try to make the current system even more susceptible to fraud. Vice President Gore’s office took the lead in convincing the Immigration and Naturalization Service to waive “stupid rules” on background checks so that hundreds of thousands of people awaiting citizenship would be “processed in time” for the 1996 election. It was later learned that 75,000 new citizens had arrest records when they applied. A spot check of 100 random new citizens by the House Judiciary Committee found that 20% of the sample had been arrested for serious crimes after they were given citizenship.

10) The practice of allowing non-citizens to vote in local elections also poses a problem. Phyllis Schlafly of the Eagle Forum explains:

The Scam of Voting by Noncitizens — ….the Democrats are seeking odd-ball constituencies to enhance their numbers. They and their liberal-advocacy law firms and lobbyists … are going after the votes of noncitizens. Many millions of noncitizens live in the United States, some legal and some illegal, and the Democrats see this as a win-win effort to get them to the polls on election day. They figure the percentages are pretty good that those constituencies will vote Democratic. Local decisions to allow noncitizens to vote in city, county and school board elections should not give them a pass to vote in federal elections, but once they are on the precinct registration rolls, who is going to stop them? Certainly not the Democratic polling officials.

And the numbers are significant:

“Thousands of non-citizens are registered to vote in some states, and tens if not hundreds of thousands in total may be present on the voter rolls nationwide. These numbers are significant: Local elections are often decided by only a handful of votes, and even national elections have likely been within the margin of the number of non-citizens illegally registered to vote,” said Hans A. von Spakovsky, a researcher at the Heritage Foundation.

“There is no reliable method to determine the number of non-citizens registered or actually voting because most laws to ensure that only citizens vote are ignored, are inadequate, or are systematically undermined by government officials. Those who ignore the implications of non-citizen registration and voting either are willfully blind to the problem or may actually favor this form of illegal voting,” said Spakovsky, an expert on the subject of illegal aliens and immigration law…

11) And then there are those pesky electronic voting machines. From Popular MechanicsHack The Vote:

Four companies, Diebold, Sequoia Voting Systems, Hart InterCivic and ES&S, are supplying the large majority of the machines… Proponents of the new technology insist these ATM-like devices will save us from the debilitating ambiguity and sloppiness of old tallying methods that complicated the 2000 deadlock in Florida. But critics fear that this generation of machines may create far more problems than it solves, such as systemwide breakdowns, lost votes–even the potential for widespread tampering.

The danger will be exacerbated in Maryland with its state-wide voting:

Maryland will now become the only state in the nation to allow statewide early voting on touch-screen machines that lack a verifiable paper trail.

Opposition To Election Reform

Civic-minded folk who work for reform will face legal obstacles and public derision:

… anyone who combats vote fraud comes in for abuse. The Justice Department has become expert at raising cries of “voter intimidation” at any attempt to monitor polling places. Last week Justice dispatched investigators to Fort Worth, Texas, merely because a political activist there distributed leaflets alleging Democrats were casting absentee ballots on behalf of shut-in voters. When the Miami Herald won a Pulitzer Prize for its reporting on the fraud in that city’s mayoral election, the Pulitzer jury noted it had been subject to “a public campaign accusing the paper of ethnic bias and attempted intimidation.” Local officials who’ve tried to purge voter rolls of felons and noncitizens have been hit with nuisance lawsuits alleging civil-rights abuse.

Estimating the Percentage

There’s a quick and easy way to guesstimate the percentage of illegal aliens registered to vote — winnowing the juror pool. The Cutting Edge shares this data:

In 2005, the U.S. Government Accountability Office found that up to 3 percent of the 30,000 individuals called for jury duty from voter registration rolls over a two-year period in just one U.S. district court were not U.S. citizens….

Thousands of non-citizens are registered to vote in some states, and tens if not hundreds of thousands in total may be present on the voter rolls nationwide. These numbers are significant: Local elections are often decided by only a handful of votes, and even national elections have likely been within the margin of the number of non-citizens ille­gally registered to vote.

References:

WSJ Opinion Journal — Voting Early–and Often

WSJ Opinion Journal — Phantom Voters

Eagle Forum — The Scam of Voting by Noncitizens and Felons

Accuracy in Media — Is Rampant Voter Fraud by Illegal Aliens Being Ignored by Government and Media?

American Enterprise Institute — Absentee Balloting for Convenience This is a good article on the historical development of absentee balloting and the trade-off between convenience and privacy.

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This has been a production of the Guard the Borders syndicate.