When Senator Chip Campson of Charleston made his case for new rules that would curtail election fraud, he had specific examples. “I will remind you and give you an example right from this body, right from this Chamber and some of you might remember this back in 1981,” Campsen said. “In 1981, Senator Albert Eugene Carmichael and his employee, Grady Flowers, were indicted for conspiracy, obstruction of justice and buying absentee ballots in connection with the June 8th 1980 Democratic primary in Dillon County.” But most of Sen. Campsen’s examples wouldn’t be impacted by the new rules. That’s because tens of thousands of South Carolina voters cast absentee ballots and many of those are sent through the mail. “Once it goes out in the mail we don’t know what happens to it. By the time it comes back to us, we have no way of knowing,” said Greenville County election supervisor Conway Belangia.
Belangia said that in Greenville County alone about 5,000 people will vote by mail. As many as 2 to 3% of those votes will be rejected for simple reasons like not completing the paperwork properly. But many of the security measures in place do not work and it’s hard to know exactly who is casting the ballot. For example, the legislature added an elementof security to the outside of the envelope containing the absentee vote. It requires a voter to have a “witness” who verifies that the vote was not unduly influenced.
But Belangia admitted that his office has no way to check the name of that witness. “It’s useless to most election offices,” Belangia said. In fact, while the legislature was cracking down on in-person fraud, the rules for absentee voting were being relaxed.
Full Article: New Voting Rules Won’t Stop Absentee Fraud | WSPA.