Thursday, April 12, 2007

DoJ searches for, but can't find, voter fraud

today's new york times:

Five years after the Bush administration began a crackdown on voter fraud, the Justice Department has turned up virtually no evidence of any organized effort to skew federal elections, according to court records and interviews.

Although Republican activists have repeatedly said fraud is so widespread that it has corrupted the political process and, possibly, cost the party election victories, about 120 people have been charged and 86 convicted as of last year.

Most of those charged have been Democrats, voting records show. Many of those charged by the Justice Department appear to have mistakenly filled out registration forms or misunderstood eligibility rules, a review of court records and interviews with prosecutors and defense lawyers show.

In Miami, an assistant United States attorney said many cases there involved what were apparently mistakes by immigrants, not fraud.

In Wisconsin, where prosecutors have lost almost twice as many cases as they won, charges were brought against voters who filled out more than one registration form and felons seemingly unaware that they were barred from voting.

One ex-convict was so unfamiliar with the rules that he provided his prison-issued identification card, stamped "Offender," when he registered just before voting.

like i said in the previous post, it's not that voter fraud doesn't exist at all; it's that, for the most part, it's only done by mistake by confused individuals. the busloads of black voters going from precinct to precinct voting repeatedly for julia carson that local right-wingers froth about don't exist: they don't exist here and they don't exist anywhere else, either.

in related news, joshua green at the atlantic highlights that telling outrageous lies about voter fraud has been part of karl rove's handbook since 1994.

josh marshall has much more. his blog as well as the sister blog tpm muckraker are both must-reads for anyone interested in this issue.

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