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October 31, 2014

Whose Vote Counts?

Joe Charlebois

What is wrong with our voter registration system? Nearly everything. There are dually registered voters and non-citizens who are freely voting in America today. Federal and state laws have made it too easy for those who are ineligible to vote to become registered. Frederick County is now the front line in this battle.


In 1993, The National Voter Registration Act or (NVRA) was signed into law by President Bill Clinton. It requires the states to provide uniform voter registration for those applying for or renewing their driver’s license or applying for social services. This has made registering to vote very easy, it has also made it easy for non-citizens to become eligible to vote.


Since passage of the NVRA, about one of every five states and the District of Columbia has passed laws that allow illegal immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses. Many of these non-citizens have either knowingly or unwittingly become registered voters. According to investigations, many have subsequently voted.


The registration process does not require any proof of citizenship. It is illegal for anyone presenting the form to ask for proof. The system is currently set up on an honor basis. We simply put our trust in the individual to be honest as to their status as a U.S. citizen. There are very few ways to determine if a registered voter is also a non-citizen.


A lawsuit has been filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore by the Virginia Voter Alliance (VVA) against the Frederick County Board of Elections. The VVA claims that despite the fact that potential jurors claimed that they are not citizens of the United States, they have been allowed to vote in subsequent elections and have not been purged from the voter rolls with the knowledge of the board. The lawsuit asks that the State of Maryland not allow these non-citizens to vote in Frederick County.


The VVA has previously found that the neighboring states of Maryland and Virginia share 40,000 registered voters. Although it is unclear the total number of voters that cast ballots in Virginia and all other states combined, the VVA did discover that 164 people illegally cast their 2012 ballots in both Maryland and Virginia.


Other recent revelations over the past few elections by independent investigations have proven that the number of illegal immigrants that have voted may have flipped the results of an election in numerous jurisdictions. In The Washington Post earlier this week, a study was showed that significant numbers of illegals have voted in the past few election cycles, enough to have elected Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, as well as putting North Carolina in the Obama column in 2012.


Earlier this year, a WBBH-TV reporter uncovered that 93 non-citizens voted in the Ft. Meyers (FL) area alone. Realizing that the 2000 presidential election was won in Florida by less than 600 votes, non-citizens votes are less rare and more significant than we are led to believe and could even change the results of a presidential election.


This subject is not new, but with more states allowing illegal immigrants to obtain driver licenses and social services, the number of illegals registered to vote is significant. The NVRA needs to be modified and elections officials need to be able to verify the citizenship of those registering to vote if we want to be able to claim that we have fair and free elections.


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