Reality of voter fraud
February 8, 2021
The presidential election of 2020 heard two words repeatedly: voter fraud.
President Trump has made multiple unproven claims that the past election was deceitful, stating Dec. 3 that this was “the most fraudulent election that anyone’s ever seen.”
However, there is no evidence of widespread fraud in this election or past. “The very few instances of voter fraud that we do see historically have had no measurable impact on the outcome of elections,” said Eliza Sweren-Becker from the nonpartisan law and policy institute of Brennan Center for Justice.
Among the various types of voter fraud like voter buying/selling, impersonation, voting in two states, and non-citizen voting, none are very common.
In fact, according to a 2014 investigation by Justin Levitt, a professor at Loyola Law School and an expert in constitutional law and law of democracy, out of one billion votes cast, only 31 credible counts of impersonation voter fraud occurred between 2000 and 2014.
In the case of the battleground states who saw a surge in Democratic votes later on in the election, that can be explained by the rise in mail-in voting this year due to the pandemic. 93 million citizens voted early, according to npr.org; the main reason is likely to abstain from in-person polling places to avoid possibly contracting the corona virus. Certain states that prevented the counting of the early ballots like Pennsylvania leaned red at first, but once the mail-in votes were counted, switched to blue.
These absentee ballots are completely legal and reliable, contrary to the president’s claims.
“[There have been] 204 cases of absentee ballot fraud, with 143 criminal convictions over the past 20 years. On average, that’s one case per state every seven years, representing about 0.00006 percent of total votes cast,” according to Miles O’ Brien, a reporter for PBS News, with data from the “conservative” Heritage Foundation.
Even though there has been no evidence to back his claims, Trump’s campaign and other Republicans have filed multiple lawsuits on the basis of fraud in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan, Arizona, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Nevada– most of which were refused trial, dropped, or dismissed.
These largely political moves are hoping to overturn the states’ electoral college vote, in hopes Donald Trump can win states that will give him a lead over Joe Biden. This is unlikely, and the president-elect Biden is already choosing officials for his cabinet for his 2021 presidency.