1 in 5 mail-in voters admit to fraud in 2020

You may have missed the provocative headline that came out right before the recent holiday period. The Heartland Institute and Rasmussen Reports surveyed more than a thousand “likely” voters in a representative nationwide sample. The results were eye-opening,

  • 21% admitted to filling out a mail-in ballot for someone else in 2020
  • 17% admitted to signing a mail-in ballot or ballot envelope for someone else
  • 17% admitted to voting in a state they no longer lived in

As we enter another election year, this sort of data becomes more important. With so many elections decided by the narrowest of margins, irregularities at that scale surely resulted in changed outcomes.

For those of you who believe that voter fraud never happens, consider this recent case from a Louisiana parish sheriff’s race. The result was tossed out when it was discovered that multiple people had voted both by mail and in-person.

The Rasmussen findings, though, are of particular concern here in Minnesota. In the Covid year of 2020, leftist advocacy groups filed a series of “friendly” lawsuits to suspend state laws that promote voting integrity. The League of Women Voters sued in 2020 to suspend the then-existing Minnesota law requiring a witness to the signature on absentee ballots. The ACLU sued to have absentee ballot applications mailed to all registered voters, regardless of whether they requested one.

These and other efforts “worked” in that Minnesota led the nation in election turnout that year at 80 percent participation. The results were dramatic. In 2016, Donald Trump earned 1.3 million votes in Minnesota, losing the state to Hillary Clinton by a mere 45,000 votes. In 2020, Trump upped his total to 1.5 million, but finished second to Joe Biden by a larger 233,000 vote margin.

Lost in all the focus on voter turnout and raw vote totals is the distinction between a ballot and a vote. Do the ballots returned and counted truly reflect the conscious intent of an Indvidual, qualified voter?

As disturbing as the Rasmussen findings are regarding the self-confessed fraud of individual voters, the organized, wholesale activities of ballot harvesting are more troubling.

The legality of the practices behind ballot harvesting vary from state to state, but universally involve actions by partisan operators to “assist” voters with a range of actions including the obtaining, marking, and returning of absentee/mail ballots. These were the practices underlying the Federal conviction (for perjury) related to and the unrelated reporting by James O’Keefe around the August 2020 Democratic party primary in Minneapolis.

The “assistance” provided by ballot harvesters in these instances was allegedly full service. The individual voters involved were unaware that votes had been recorded under their names in that primary.

All of this may be academic now that Democrats in Minnesota have passed a full suite of voting reforms in the 2023 legislative session. Felon voting, automatic registration, permanent absentee lists, etc., are all intended to drive-up turnout in the state that already leads the nation.

But little attention is paid to whether these additional ballots cast ultimately reflect the conscious choice of a bona fide voter.