Our elections are overwhelmed with voter fraud, or so say Steve Pappas and Nancy Crawford-Hall, the publisher of the Santa Ynez Valley Journal. In her columns over recent months, Crawford-Hall has laid out what she claims is the evidence of this massive fraud. Does voter fraud threaten our system of democracy? Should we be worried? No. Pappas and Crawford-Hall have confused registration fraud, which is a petty crime that threatens nothing of much importance, with voting fraud, which actually is a serious crime. Out of this confusion, they have spun a fantastic story about democracy under attack. It isn’t true. The only threat to democracy came from Steve Pappas, who sought to strip 18,000 American citizens of their voting rights, a threat which the courts dismissed for a complete lack of evidence. Let me explain. Voting fraud is casting ballots illegally. Registering under a thousand different names and voting on behalf of these thousand fictitious people in an attempt to change the outcome of an election is an attempt to subvert democracy. Even a single case of casting a fraudulent vote is a serious crime. In contrast, registration fraud is typically petty theft. Many campaigns pay people to register voters for their side. If a dishonest deputy registrar fills out a few fake registration forms and registers his dog Fido, he gets paid for it. He is stealing from the campaign. But if it is theft, it ends there. A few family pets may end up on the voter rolls, but if they don’t vote, democracy suffers no harm.