Voter Fraud
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Law and Politics

Voter Fraud

Is it really a problem?

WHAT IT IS

  • Voter fraud is an illegal interference with the process of an election.

  • Voter fraud can help or hinder candidates by providing more or fewer illegal votes for the individual. 

  • President Trump has claimed, "the same person votes many times"[NPR], that the voting system "is rigged" [The New York Times], and that voter fraud is the reason he lost the popular vote. [New York University School of Law]

  • President Trump set up an Election Integrity Commission that asked all 50 states and D.C. to submit information on everyone who voted in elections from 2006 onward. [The Washington Post]

  • Information requested was voter name, address, date of birth, party affiliation, last four digits of social security numbers, and voter history. [The Washington Post]
  • The American Civil Liberties Union sued the commission, citing their belief that the request breaks federal laws. [Reuters]

WHY IT MATTERS

 

If present, voter fraud undermines American democracy. Numerous studies have found that widespread voter fraud is not an issue in the United States. Still, many are asking if we should change our voting system.

FACTUALLY WRONG

Disproven

There is no data to prove, or evidence of, widespread voter fraud. [Propublica]

 

It simply isn’t a problem. [ABC News]

 

Claims of voter fraud have since been disproven multiple times for his false statements about voter fraud. [PBS], [The Washington Post]

 

Instances of voter fraud are factually extremely low and do not affect elections. [PBS]

 

 

Discouraging

Some believe the commissions and new laws will discourage people from voting. [NPR]

 

 

Invasion of privacy

Some believe the commission was unconstitutional by demanding private information of the 200 million registered voters in the U.S. [Slate]

BUT, FIX THE SYSTEM

Flaws in the system

Widespread voter fraud is not present in the U.S., but some believe the voting system in the U.S. has its flaws. The commission may be a step toward correcting those flaws. [The Los Angeles Times]

 

 

One is enough

Supports of reform argue that any amount of voter fraud is grounds for new rules and restrictions. [NBC News]

 

 

Fact gathering

Some believe the Election Integrity Commission was simply on a fact-finding mission and was not trying to access data that is not already available through public records. [Fox News]

WHERE WE ARE NOW

  • The commission has since shut down due to legal challenges. [NPR]

  • Read the full list of states that either refused or complied with the request for voter data. [PBS]

  • Some people are withdrawing their voter registration in some areas, afraid of their private information being shared. [NPR]

THINGS TO THINK ABOUT

  • Are states trying to protect their citizens or protect themselves from more federal oversight?

  • Is privacy, not explicitly discussed in the U.S. Constitution, something that is a general civil liberty for all American citizens?

  • Some states have laws that cancel or "purge" your voter registration if you have not voted in 2 years. Watch video below for more information.

Watch the history of America's fight for the right to vote.

Key Vocabulary