The idea that voters are somehow hijacking elections and throwing the results to an undeserving winner is getting a lot of traction these days. It’s a storyline that I just don’t buy. Elections are large, complicated affairs, and given the number of people that are involved, we’re never going to get the results perfect. I, for one, would prefer to let more people vote than less, and in so doing make it as easy as humanly possible to do so. However, a majority of conservative politicians in this country would disagree with me.
Less discussed is political fraud in America. Let’s just take Michigan as an example, where two rather glaring instances of political fraud have recently taken place. The first involves Republican Congressman Thaddeus McCotter, whose staff submitted hundreds, if not thousands of fake signatures to get him on the ballot. As it turns out, this kind of fraud may have stretched back to elections in 2008 and 2010 as well. Four of his staffers have since been arrested and charged.
In addition, an even more serious case of election fraud occurred when Michigan House Majority Leader Jase Bolger (R-Marshall) convinced Grand Rapids Democrat Roy Schmidt to switch parties (becoming a Republican), and in so doing, also arranged for another Democrat, Matt Mojzak, a candidate that didn’t have a hope in hell of winning, and who didn’t even reside in the district in question at the time of the election filings, to run against Schmidt so as to make his reelection virtually guaranteed. Kent Country prosecutors have declined to press charges, although an investigation by the Michigan State Police was ongoing.
William Forsyth, the Kent County prosecutor stated that the need to inform the electorate of the activities of Jase Bolger and Roy Schmidt was a compelling enough reason to shut down the investigation, and release the findings. Basically, it was ended in the interest of expedience and the need to inform the public. Forsyth also stated that had the investigation continued, both Schmidt and Bolger could have ended up facing criminal felony charges.
These instances are far more serious than an individual mistakenly casting a ballot in the wrong precinct, or voting twice. When you have outright election fraud happening when the ballots are being printed, that makes every vote in the ensuing election an act of fraud, which taints the entire process. It’s not voter fraud that we need to worry about, it’s political fraud, and it seems mostly to happen at the behest of Republicans. They ought first to take a good, hard look at their own conduct before they start trying to decide who can, and cannot vote in the elections they seem to have absolutely no compunction rigging.