The conversation that’s going forward right now about President Donald Trump’s investigation into election fraud goes like this: But it’s not enough to flip the final results.
Well, that’s a flipping weak argument to halt the investigation.
No matter if it’s a handful of illegally cast ballots, or a widespread, systemic fraudulent scheme of the few to steal the election from the many — America needs to know.
America needs to know the election process is safe.
Americans deserve to know the votes they cast are honestly counted.
For far too long now, politicians of both parties have pooh-poohed and shush-shushed any type of large-scale, nationwide look at America’s ballot box shenanigans. And that’s not simply because those who stand to gain from the fraud don’t want their fraud to fall in the light of sunshine-y revelations. It’s also because some just don’t want to shake an already shaky foundation. They don’t want to cause ripples in a system that’s really only held together by the thinnest of glue — that is, trust in the public servant sector.
After all, with voting, perception counts. It counts a great deal. And some would rather suffer a little fraud, quietly, silently, so as not to cause disruptions to the whole system. Truthfully, there’s a point to be taken there; there’s a valid argument to be made there.
But Donald Trump is not that kind of guy.
Donald Trump is the great disruptor — the enemy of the deep state. As far back as 2016, he was calling for investigations of election fraud, even as members of his own party winced and wished him to stop. In 2017, he created the “Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity” by executive order “in order to promote fair and honest federal elections” by outing irregularities at the ballot box. Some months later, the commission disbanded, and headlines like this, from The Associated Press, ran rampant: “Report: Trump commission did not find widespread voter fraud.”
Yet “widespread” is an interesting word. It suggests voter fraud was found — but not enough to warrant concern.
And therein lies the problem.
The standard for voter fraud should be zero.
The imposition of penalties for voter fraud should be 100 percent — beginning with the lifetime loss of the right to vote and including substantial jail time and punitive fees, enough to send a warning that thunders decades into the future.
There is enough historical evidence to show, beyond a shadow of doubt, that fraud has occurred at the ballot boxes in America. In fact, nobody really disputes that, not even those who think Trump has gone off the deep end with his calls to investigate voting fraud. Nobody, except the fraudsters themselves.
“Kris Kobach and the Search for the Mythical Voter Fraud,” The Atlantic wrote just this month, in a “nothing to see here, go home, folks” attempted look back at the election integrity commission established by Trump in 2016 and vice-chaired by Kobach.
But here’s the thing: Fraud at the election boxes is part of America’s history.
It’s a truth that’s happened — Tammany Hall, anyone? — as well as a truth that continues to occur, even today, to the level where hundreds have been tried and convicted for various deceptive voting practices. As the Heritage Foundation reported, in 1982, a Justice Department investigation led to the conviction of 63 of voter fraud in Chicago — a drop in the bucket of the estimated 100,000 fraudulent ballots that were cast. In 1994, nine pleaded guilty in Alabama to voter fraud; two more were found guilty by a jury of peers. In 2003, fraud in the East Chicago mayoral race ran so rampant a court overturned election results and ordered a new vote.
Fraud is no “myth.”
Voter fraud is real. It’s really happened; it really continues to happen. The only question to decide is: How much are the American people willing to take?
“For some people, no matter how many cases of voter fraud you show them, there will never be enough for them to admit that there’s a problem,” Kobach wisely stated to the AP in 2018, suggesting that the findings of the commission were inaccurately presented as big nuthingburgers by the left.
It’s the same today. It’s the same type of yawning that’s taking place today — the pretending that only those who believe in unicorns believe in vote buying, or the dead voting, or illegals casting illegal ballots.
But let’s remember that the Trump of today, calling for widespread investigation of the nation’s electoral processes — and being mocked and scorned for it — is the same Trump of yesterday, calling for widespread investigation of America’s intel and deep state, in part, for spying on his campaign — and again, being mocked and scorned for it.
Yet toward that — this: “Democrats And The Media Keep Lying About Obama’s Agencies Spying On Trump’s Campaign,” wrote The Federalist, just a few days ago. That’s to say: It happened.
Trump was right about spying.
He may very well be right about voter fraud.
So let the votes be counted. Let the investigations go forth. Once again, Trump is the right person, at the right time, making the right case on behalf of America. Americans, no matter their political affiliations, deserve to know their ballots count when they’re cast.
Even a few cases of fraud can crumble the entire system. Except for those with nefarious designs, it should be obvious and unremarkable to agree: The standard of voting fraud is zero.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @ckchumley. Listen to her podcast “Bold and Blunt” by clicking HERE. And never miss her column; subscribe to her newsletter by clicking HERE.
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