Voter fraud happens. Just ask Olivia Alair, press secretary for the U.S. Department of Transportation. Alair was regional communications director for the 2008 election in Ohio under White House press secretary Robert Gibbs. In 2008, Alair and two other Obama campaign staffers registered to vote in Ohio. The problem was that Alair did not live in Ohio and had no permanent plans to do so. By Ohio law, this made her ineligible to register. Only after this was made public did Alair and her cohorts send letters asking that their registrations be canceled. If the press had never made this public, would Alair have gone ahead and committed a felony by voting? Only she knows. But her cavalier attitude toward our nation’s voting laws permeates the entire Obama administration.

In 2004, an immigrant illegally registered to vote in Putnam County, Tenn., and then voted illegally. This is a felony three times over! 18 U.S.C. § 1015(f) makes it illegal to claim you are a U.S. citizen in order to register to vote for any election; 18 U.S.C. § 611 prohibits a noncitizen from voting in an election where there is a federal candidate on the ballot; and 18 U.S.C. § 911 makes false claims of citizenship in general a felony. Instead of prosecution, the Obama administration sent the immigrant a letter asking him when he “discovered” that he was “not a United States Citizen.” Protecting the ballot box was not their priority (you can read more about The Threat of Non-Citizen Voting, here).

And the Tennessee case was not an isolated incident. Thanks to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, we now know that not protecting the ballot box from voter fraud is the official policy of the Obama Justice Department. Former American Civil Liberties Union attorney and current Justice Department employee Christopher Coates testified before the committee that: 1) Deputy Assistant Attorney General Julie Fernandes ordered DOJ attorneys only to enforce “traditional types of [voter intimidation] cases that would provide political equality for racial and minority language voters;” and 2) Fernandes informed DOJ attorneys that it was the policy of the Obama administration not to enforce anti-voter fraud laws since Obama “was not interested in that type of issue, but instead interested in issues that pertained to voter access.” Fernandes has never responded to these allegations.

For most electoral races today, fraud will not be a factor. But there are some races where some will desperately cling to power in a close election. And that is where voting fraud is most likely to happen. The Heritage Foundation’s voting law expert Hans von Spakovsky told Fox News:

Any place where we have very close elections, there’s always going to be the potential there that voter fraud may make a difference, and that’s where we are going to have to be really careful to be sure that doesn’t happen.

In fact, voter fraud has already happened in this election. A Daytona Beach City Commissioner was arrested for absentee ballot fraud just last week. In Troy, N.Y., Democrats on the city council have been ordered to supply DNA to prosecutors to be tested against absentee ballots and absentee ballot applications that were allegedly forged. And in Bucks County, Pa., a Democratic program intimidated some voters into needlessly, and sometimes fraudulently, applying for absentee ballots.

Federal law does allow for poll workers to assist the disabled and those who can’t read English. But, if you see or hear a poll worker attempt to give unsolicited instructions to any voter (other than technical instructions), that is not allowed. Neither is any electioneering in or near the polling place, and promises of payments for voting of any kind (whether it be cash or free food) are also illegal. If you witness any of these activities, notify both the chief election official in their particular county or city, as well as the media to make sure that officials do something about it.

The right to vote in a free and fair election is the most basic civil right, on which depends all of the other rights of the American people protected by the Bill of Rights. Unfortunately, as long as elections put people into positions where they can make decisions about how much the government will spend, who will receive the money, and how the government will exercise its power, elections will be important enough to tempt some individuals to steal them. As the Supreme Court recognized when it upheld the constitutionality of Indiana’s voter identification law in 2008, flagrant examples of voter fraud “have been documented throughout this Nation’s history by respected historians and journalists.” Those examples “demonstrate that not only is the risk of voter fraud real but that it could affect the outcome of a close election.” Be on the look out to protect your most basic civil right today.

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