Drew Zahn is a WND news editor who cut his journalist teeth as a member of the award-winning staff of Leadership, Christianity Today's professional journal for church leaders. A former pastor, he is the editor of seven books, including Movie-Based Illustrations for Preaching & Teaching, which sparked his ongoing love affair with film and his weekly WND column, "Popcorn and a (world)view."More ↓Less ↑
During each election cycle, news stories emerge of voter irregularities and ballot malfunctions, prompting volunteer organizations to fight what they say is rampant fraud, while many authorities and other organizations dismiss the charges as unfounded.
But Dan McGrath, executive director of TakeAction Minnesota, told the St. Paul Legal Ledger, “There is no evidence of any sort of systemic voter fraud in this state. … There’s barely any evidence of voter fraud at all.”
Now Minnesota is a hotbed of controversy again, as Fox News reports officials are investigating an allegation that mentally disabled voters in Crow Wing County were coached by their attendants to cast ballots for specific candidates. The charges say attendants even filled out the ballots themselves for people so incapacitated they may not have even been eligible to vote in the first place.
Other investigations from around the country have also arisen, including the following:
Kentucky’s Lexington Herald-Reader reports state officials received over 100 calls to a voter fraud hotline from 46 counties by early this afternoon. The state’s attorney general’s office told the paper the calls ran the gamut – complaints about voting machines and election officials, electioneering, general election fraud, disrupting the polls and more. Four counties even had allegations of vote buying.
In the heated race in Nevada between Democratic Sen. Harry Reid and GOP challenger Sharron Angle, the Associated Press reports, Republican Party legal counsel has already filed a 44-page complaint alleging voter logs in a pair of counties showed the number of ballots cast was larger than the number of voters who signed the election registers. Furthermore, Angle’s campaign has alleged Reid and Democratic union backers were illegally buying votes with free food and Starbucks gift cards in repeated e-mails to supporters.
Angle’s lawyers have also filed a complaint with the Justice Department alleging casino executives sympathetic to Reid put pressure on union employees to vote, even telling bosses to “put a headlock” on supervisors to make sure their workers vote.
In Houston, Texas, a volunteer watchdog organization discovered evidence another organization had registered as many as 23,000 phony voter registrations in Harris County, including a woman who registered six times in the same day, registrations of non-citizens and 1,597 registrations that named the same person multiple times, often with different signatures.
In North Carolina, Washington’s WITN-TV reports, a federal judge ordered written notices placed on voting machines after a string of complaints that voting machines were “flipping” straight-ticket Republican votes to straight-ticket Democrat votes was verified.
In Pennsylvania, letters from Bucks County Democratic Party falsely warned voters they may not be eligible to vote unless they sent their absentee ballot applications into a Party post office box, rather than county voter registration office.
In Prairie du Chien, Wis., a man is charged with filling out multiple absentee ballots.
And as WND has reported, delays in overseas ballots for the military that resulted in thousands of soldiers’ votes not counting in the 2008 election still haven’t been fully fixed for 2010.
Dozens of other allegations of voting irregularities have come in from WND readers, who have filed their personal stories and observations with WND’s Voter Fraud Hotline:
Kate from Pennsylvania reports poll workers insisting that a straight-party vote is required.
Elizabeth in Philadelphia reports a voting assistance attendant helping the elderly … with an “official Democratic ballot” in her hand.
Chris in Nevada reports waiting for 15 minutes for the ballot reader to process, eventually leaving the polling place without being able to register a vote.
Robert in Illinois reports a poll worker telling a voter he was not allowed to take personal notes into the polling booth.
Greg in North Carolina reports confirmation of the electronic voting machines switching straight-ticket Republican votes to straight-ticket Democrat votes.
Mike in Washington reports absentee ballots being returned to senders too late to count because of insufficient postage.
Thus far, America’s two major political parties have taken different public stances on the voter fraud issue.
Democratic National Committee National Press Secretary Hari Sevugan told ABC News, “We have confidence that voters are going to be able to go to the polls and have their votes counted and we are working with partners and officials at all levels to ensure that’s the case.”
Republicans, however, told ABC News, “[Fraud is] a concern for us every cycle. It’s a concern I think in particular this cycle because we have close races in states where historically we’ve had issues – Illinois, Pennsylvania and Washington State.”