Here’s what we can now say. Of the hundreds of millions if not billions of electoral ballots processed over the past decade, the two most prominent cases of voter fraud involve the Republican Secretary of State of Indiana, and accomplices of James O’Keefe. Yesterday in New Hampshire, O’Keefe had the bright idea of getting some of his lackies to impersonate a voter. This would display how easy it is to commit voter fraud, or so one assumes was their point. Well, not only was it not all that easy, but the lackies in question could see jail time as a result.
Federal law bans not only the casting of, but the “procurement” of ballots “that are known by the person to be materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent under the laws of the State in which the election is held.”
Hamline University law professor David Schultz told TPM that there’s “no doubt” that O’Keefe’s accomplices violated the law.
“In either case, if they were intentionally going in and trying to fraudulently obtain a ballot, they violated the law,” Schultz said. “So right off the bat, what they did violated the law.”
Election law expert Rick Hasen, who writes the Election Law Blog, joked in an email to TPM that O’Keefe’s team should “next show how easy it is to rob a bank with a plastic gun.”
“Who in their right mind would risk a felony conviction for this? And who would be able to do this in large enough numbers to (1) affect the outcome of the election and (2) remain undetected?” Hasen wrote.
Let’s not lose in all of this the fact that the incident was not successful. A poll watcher witnessed the O’Keefe colleague trying to vote as a dead man, and promised to follow up on it. Needless to say, this doesn’t appear in the video from the O’Keefe factory.
So remember, the biggest incidents of voter fraud that we know about came from a Republican Secretary of State and a conservative operative. Given these facts, maybe only Republican Secretaries of State and conservative operatives should have to show voter ID at the polls. After all, they’re the ones with the history of potential voter fraud.