In a national television appearance on Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell knocked down claims of wide-scale voting fraud in the presidential election. While tossing cold water on President Trump’s repeated (and unsubstantiated) claims of fraud impacting the election, McConnell did say that vote fraud is real, it happens, and Kentucky has a history of it. “… the Democratic myth that voter fraud is a fiction, is not true,” McConnell said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “We’ve had a series of significant cases in Kentucky over the years. There is voter fraud in the country.” Our reporting pals at WAVE-3 in Louisville asked McConnell’s office for details. His office responded with a link to our newsroom’s August 2016 article on Kentucky’s history of vote buying. So, is McConnell right? Is fraud rampant in Kentucky? No, not really. The answer is complicated, though, and it boils down to semantics.
Articles about voting issues in Kentucky.
Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes said that during the Kentucky General Assembly, which began Tuesday, she will push for early voting and legislation to make it easier for veteran-owned businesses to get started. “When I took office, I promised Kentuckians that I would bring commonsense changes and reforms to the Secretary of State’s office—that I would make it easier to do business with government and tear down barriers to the ballot box—and, together, we are making strides,” Grimes said. “In this session, I’ll continue to keep that promise.” Grimes’ legislative campaign for early in-person absentee voting began last year and won bipartisan support, including the endorsement of Tre Hargett, the Republican Secretary of State of Tennessee. He traveled to Frankfort to offer his testimony on the legislation. Grimes’ proposal calls for allowing all Kentucky voters to cast ballots early in-person without an excuse during their county’s in-person absentee voting window. Early voting is offered in 37 states and the District of Columbia.
Boyd County will spend $80,000 for a one-question “wet” election on packaged alcohol sales — three months before it spends another $90,000 on the presidential election. Kentucky law bars counties across the state from holding local-option elections on the same day as primary and general elections, if the special election is county wide. “That’s so archaic,” said Boyd County Judge-Executive Steve Towler. “It’s utterly ridiculous to have a special election for one question.” County clerks across the state have lobbied Kentucky legislature to amend KRS 242.030 to help alleviate the cost of county-wide, local-option elections. A previous bill, for instance, would’ve helped by requiring the petitioners calling for a vote on county-wide alcohol sales to cover part of the cost. House Bill 621, the most recent attempt to alter the statute, was halted last March.
Kentucky: Recanvass of Democratic Primary votes confirms Hillary Clinton wins Kentucky | Louisville Courier-Journal
Hillary Clinton remains the winner of Kentucky’s Democratic presidential primary after Thursday’s recanvass of votes. “The recanvass results that we received today are the same as those certified totals that my office received on Friday. The difference between Hillary Clinton and Sen. (Bernie) Sanders: 1,911 votes,” Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes announced Thursday afternoon at the State Capitol. Unofficial vote totals reported by the state Board of Elections on the night of the May 17 primary gave Clinton a 1,924-vote lead over Sanders, a U.S. senator from Vermont. But those totals changed slightly on Friday – reducing the margin to 1,911 votes – after each county reported its certified results to Grimes’ office later in the week. Grimes said the recanvass resulted in no change from those certified results she had in hand as of Friday: 212,534 votes for Clinton, and 210,623 votes for Sanders. “The recanvass vote totals, which were submitted to my office today will become the official vote totals that the State Board of Elections will certify on May 31,” Grimes said.
Bernie Sanders has requested a recanvass of votes cast in Kentucky’s Democratic presidential primary last week, which he lost to Hillary Clinton by 1,924 votes. The recanvass is essentially a re-tabulation of results from each precinct and will be conducted on Thursday, May 26, according to the Kentucky Secretary of State’s office. “The purpose of a recanvass is to verify the accuracy of the vote totals reported from the voting machines,” Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes tweeted after receiving Sanders’ request. Sanders sent the request to Grimes’ office on Tuesday morning; the deadline to ask for a recanvass is 4:00 Tuesday afternoon. According the Kentucky Democratic Party, Clinton won 28 delegates and Sanders won 27 from last week’s primary election.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) has requested a state-run recanvass of last week’s Kentucky Democratic primary, hoping to earn at least one more delegate out of one of the year’s closest races. The decision, first reported by the Associated Press, came just hours before the deadline to request a new look at the Kentucky vote. On election night, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton led Sanders by 1,924 votes out of 454,573 cast. That prompted her campaign to declare victory, and for Kentucky’s election chief Alison Lundergan Grimes, a Clinton supporter, to tell news outlets that Clinton was the “apparent winner” of an upset. But Sanders never quite conceded the election. At rallies since the May 17 vote, he has referred to Kentucky as a delegate tie — it was, awarding 27 delegates to each candidate — and talked about dramatically cutting Clinton’s margin from the 2008 Democratic primary. On election night, after CNN reported that Sanders would not request a recount or recanvass, his spokesman Michael Briggs told The Washington Post that the decision was still to be made.
A recanvass is essentially a review of the vote totals in each county. County clerks will review the absentee votes and check the printouts to make sure the numbers were correct when they were transmitted to the State Board of Elections. State law allows for recanvassing only if a county clerk or a county board of elections notices a discrepancy or if a candidate makes a written request to the secretary of state.
The Kentucky Democratic Party on Wednesday was waiting on final numbers from the Tuesday’s presidential primary before doling out delegates to Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Daniel Lowry, a spokesman for the party, said Democrats had hoped to get the numbers by Wednesday afternoon but that the numbers may not be finalized until sometime Thursday. He said the party expects the apportionment could be 28 delegates for Clinton and 27 for Sanders following the narrow win for the former Senator and Secretary of State. “It was so close,” Lowry said of the election returns. According to the Kentucky Secretary of State’s Office, Clinton beat Sanders by 1,924 votes out of 454,573 cast in the presidential primary.
Gov. Matt Bevin signed a bill into law on April 13 that will make it easier for felons in Kentucky to have their records expunged and restore their full rights as citizens. Kentucky House Bill 40 will allow felons the opportunity to submit for expungement five years after probation or the end of their sentence, whichever is the longest. “It’s an honor and privilege to be able to sign House Bill 40 into law,” Bevin said at the signing. “It is critical that there is an opportunity for redemption and second chances because America is a land that was founded on these principles. The greatness, uniqueness, beauty and extraordinary nature of America is based on the fact that we do give people an opportunity for redemption.” The law comes after Kentucky’s previous governor, Steve Beshear, filed an executive order to allow released felons to vote shortly before he left office last year. That executive order differs significantly from the one signed last Wednesday.
A bill to allow no-excuse early voting in Kentucky is dead for this year. Legislation proposed by Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes cleared the House, but never came up for a vote in the Senate. The legislation was aimed at boosting voter turnout in Kentucky. Currently, voters must have a qualifying reason to vote early. Grimes was the leading supporter of the bill. She expressed frustration that the measure won’t be passed this year. “I’ve traveled the state and people feel it’s something that we should already have,” Grimes stated. “Much like online voter registration, it’s something they expect.”