“Group that can’t find systemic voter fraud eager to help combat systemic voter fraud”


The whole Mother Jones report provides an interesting insight into how outside groups can (and often have) pushed legislation that they themselves have helped draft behind closed doors. But here we’ll diverge to make another point.

That is this: Anderson and von Spakovsky are making claims about demonstrated fraud that a database operated by the Heritage Foundation itself can’t back up.

I make this point with some regularity because the Heritage Foundation’s database of fraud cases is often cited as evidence of the rampant scale of fraud. You can find it online; it claims to have demonstrated 1,322 “proven instances of voter fraud.” But when you look at what’s presented, you see all of the caveats that aren’t mentioned. Like that the database goes back to the mid-1980s. Or that it includes a number of cases of fraudulent voter registration by third parties, which is not generally included in assessments of “voter fraud.”

In fact, as I’ve pointed out before, the database includes only one example of a fraudulently cast ballot from the 2020 general election. That’s not the only such case, mind you. Local news reports indicated 16 such incidents when I looked for examples earlier this month. If that were every demonstrated case and each of those votes was counted (which they weren’t), that would amount to one instance of voter fraud for every 10 million votes tallied in 2020. Being struck by lightning is four times as common.

In other words, Anderson is going on cable television and driving an effort to pass new voting restrictions by asserting that fraud is a real threat demanding of legislative response — when even the tally compiled by her parent organization makes obvious that it isn’t.

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