The left insists that those who do not buy into its agenda regarding global warming are “deniers” – ignoramuses who refuse to acknowledge facts thanks to a political agenda. But when it comes to voter fraud, it is the left that lives in the realm of fantasy. Rachel Maddow, the heavyweight over at the pseudointellectual sewage tank of MSNBC – complete with nerd glasses for everyone but Chris Matthews and Ed Schultz! – says that voter fraud doesn’t exist.
“The scourge of voter fraud,” Maddow writes at MSNBC.com, “is largely imaginary.” Her source for this extraordinary claim: a study by Loyola University Law School professor Justin Levitt, who claimed that he had found just 31 instances of voter fraud out of “more than 1 billion ballots” cast. Of course, Levitt’s study looked only at in-person voter fraud. It didn’t look at absentee voting; in the 2010 midterms, 15.6 percent of all ballots cast were absentee. As Philip Bump of the Washington Post acknowledged, “there have been examples of fraud, including fraud perpetrated through the use of absentee ballots severe enough to force new elections at the state level.” And the study itself looked only at active legal investigations into voter fraud – a dubious measure, given the lackadaisical enforcement of voter fraud generally.
As Hans Von Spakovsky has written, voter fraud is quite real. In the Wall Street Journal this week, Von Spakovsky wrote:
In the past few months, a former police chief in Pennsylvania pleaded guilty to voter fraud in a town-council election. That fraud had flipped the outcome of a primary election. Former Connecticut legislator Christina Ayala has been indicted on 19 charges of voter fraud, including voting in districts where she didn’t reside. (She hasn’t entered a plea.) A Mississippi grand jury indicted seven individuals for voter fraud in the 2013 Hattiesburg mayoral contest, which featured voting by ineligible felons and impersonation fraud. A woman in Polk County, Tenn., was indicted on a charge of vote-buying–a practice that the local district attorney said had too long “been accepted as part of life” there.
In all likelihood, Obamacare would not be the law of the land today if not for voter fraud: the 60th Senate vote for that monstrosity came from newly-elected Senator Al Franken (D-MN), who won his election against Republican Norm Coleman by 312 votes in a race in which 1,099 felons allegedly illegally cast their ballots (opponents claimed that they didn’t do so purposefully, or that the number of felons voting was significantly less). Of course, Coleman wasn’t the only Republican to lose a major race thanks to voter fraud – in 2004, Republican Dino Rossi lost the gubernatorial race to Democrat Christine Gregoire by 129 votes, and more than 1,600 illegal votes had been cast, including hundreds of felons. The courts decided that since there was no evidence to suggest which way those votes went, however, they couldn’t give the election to Rossi.
Political scientists Jesse Richman and David Earnest wrote in the Washington Post recently, explaining, “Our best guess, based upon extrapolations from the portion of the sample with a verified vote, is that 6.4 percent of non-citizens voted in 2008 and 2.2 percent of non-citizens voted in 2010,” a percentage “large enough to plausibly account for Democratic victories in a few close elections.” Media members claimed that the results were skewed, and that incorrect response to questions about citizenship status played a role in those numbers.
It is no coincidence that those most likely to suggest that voter fraud is purely imaginary are proponents of Democratic nominees. Maddow’s fellow MSNBC host, Al Sharpton, cheered on and even hugged voter fraud convict Melowese Richardson in March – Richardson worked at the polls in 2012 and voted both early and often for President Obama.
Voter fraud has long been a part of American life – local elections throughout American history have fallen victim to various schemes by power players. For anyone to oppose common sense measures designed to stop such voter fraud smacks of friendliness toward such fraud.
Ben Shapiro is Senior Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the new book, The People vs. Barack Obama: The Criminal Case Against The Obama Administration (Threshold Editions, June 10, 2014). He is also Editor-in-Chief of TruthRevolt.org. Follow Ben Shapiro on Twitter @benshapiro.