voter fraud

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Texas: A Woman Who Voted With A Green Card Was Sentenced To 8 Years In Prison — And A Court Upheld It | Bustle

On Wednesday, an appeals court upheld a voter fraud conviction against a Texas woman who voted with a green card. Rosa Maria Ortega was originally convicted in 2017, despite the fact that she claimed she had no idea her green card didn’t provide her voting rights. Now, Ortega, a mother of four, has been sentenced to a jail time of eight years, as well as likely deportation. According to NBC News, Ortega voted five times from 2004-2014, and served as a poll worker; she even voted for the attorney general who is now prosecuting her, a man named Ken Paxton. Ortega’s attorney told The Washington Post in 2017, “She’s got this [green] card that says ‘resident’ on it, so she doesn’t mark that she’s not a citizen. She had no ulterior motive beyond what she thought, mistakenly, was her civic duty.” In a statement in 2017, when Ortega was first convicted, Paxton said, “This case shows how serious Texas is about keeping its elections secure, and the outcome sends a message that violators of the state’s election law will be prosecuted to the fullest.” He added, “Safeguarding the integrity of our elections is essential to preserving our democracy.” Read More

Arizona: Republicans claim Arizona vote fraud | Arizona Republic

President Donald Trump and Republicans in Arizona and nationally are stoking claims of deliberate election fraud in the state’s U.S. Senate race as Martha McSally and Kyrsten Sinema await results of a vote that could swing in either’s favor. The tight race has left Republicans in jeopardy of losing a Senate seat in the state for the first time in 30 years.  Though McSally held a lead in early-vote totals, the tally flipped in Sinema’s favor Thursday night. Updated results Friday evening kept Sinema with a 20,000-plus advantage, but an estimated 360,000 ballots remain to be counted.   No group has brought forward allegations of specific criminal activity, although one Republican lawsuit addressed an equity issue over how early-ballot signatures are verified.  …  Amy Chan, former state elections director under Republican Secretary of State Ken Bennett, tweeted, “Unfounded allegations of voter fraud are totally irresponsible and should rightly be condemned because they shake voter confidence & can affect future participation. Voter fraud in my experience is almost nonexistent.” Read More

Florida: Rick Scott’s monitors agree with state cops: No Florida voter fraud | Politico

Gov. Rick Scott asked state law enforcement to investigate Broward County election officials because of potential “rampant [voter] fraud,” even though monitors from his own administration say they have seen none in that county. “Our staff has seen no evidence of criminal activity at this time,” Department of State spokeswoman Sarah Revell wrote in an email on Saturday. Scott is the state’s current governor and the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate with a narrow lead over incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) That assessment, which was first reported by the Miami Herald, jives with that given by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which said Friday it has also seen no allegations of fraud. Read More

California: Voter fraud conviction inspires bill loosening oversight of lawmaker residency | The Sacramento Bee

Four years ago, Rod Wright resigned from the California Senate and served 71 minutes in jail after being convicted of eight felonies, including perjury and voter fraud, for living outside the district where he ran for office. Wright argued that he had done everything necessary to establish as his legal “domicile” an Inglewood home that he owned and where he registered to vote. But using photos of another house in the upscale neighborhood of Baldwin Hills, with his Maserati parked in front and closets full of his clothes, Los Angeles County prosecutors convinced a jury that Wright actually lived several miles away. The conviction upset many of Wright’s colleagues, who point out that the definition of a “domicile,” which establishes the eligibility of someone to run for a particular legislative seat, does not include the word “live” anywhere in it: “that place in which his or her habitation is fixed, wherein the person has the intention of remaining, and to which, whenever he or she is absent, the person has the intention of returning.” Read More

Texas: Woman Hit With 5 Year Sentence For Inadvertent Illegal Vote Asks For New Trial | TPM

The 43-year-old Texas woman who was sentenced to five years in prison last month for filling out a provisional ballot while she was still on supervised released for a felony tax fraud conviction has requested a new trial. Crystal Mason and her attorney, Alison Grinter, filed a motion for a new trial in Tarrant County, Texas on Wednesday, arguing that not only did Mason not actually vote — her provisional ballot was rejected — in the 2016 presidential election, she may have been eligible to vote in the state of Texas, Grinter told TPM Wednesday. According to the motion shared with TPM, in the state of Texas it is legal for a person to vote if they have a state felony conviction, but only if they are out prison, are off probation and off parole or supervision. When Mason cast her provisional ballot — which she filled out with an election official because her name was not on the voter roll — she was on federal supervised release, which is a period of interaction with federal authorities that is tacked on to the end of every federal prison sentence. Read More

Editorials: Judge deserved more than probation after trying to rig election | Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Former Justice of the Peace Russ Casey walked out of a Tarrant County courthouse this week with a gift: He got a five-year, probated sentence after consciously trying to manipulate the electoral process. Casey’s plea deal looks even sweeter when compared to two other election fraud cases recently prosecuted by the Tarrant County District Attorney’s office. In those two cases confused — or at the very least misguided — women got prison sentences for voting violations. Forcing Casey to surrender his office — and his $126,000 salary — may be seen as a just penalty. It’s not enough. This Editorial Board thinks prosecutors and the public need to ask themselves if the scales of justice are out of balance. It offends our sense of fair play to see this kind of inequality. In the one case where an election was in real jeopardy, the guilty guy skates. Read More

Florida: Judge rules in favor of Broward elections office in voter fraud lawsuit | Sun Sentinel

A federal judge Friday cleared Broward Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes in a lawsuit that accused her office of facilitating voter fraud. U.S. District Judge Beth Bloom concluded that Snipes had a program in place “that makes a reasonable effort to remove the names of ineligible voters from the official lists of eligible voters by reason of death or change of address.”Bloom said the American Civil Rights Union, which filed suit against Snipes because of the potential for voter fraud, had not proven that the Broward elections office violated the National Voting Rights Act. Read More

Colorado: Former Colorado GOP chairman sentenced for voter fraud | CBS

The former chairman of the Colorado Republican Party was sentenced to four years of probation and 300 hours of community service for voter fraud. Steve Curtis blamed a “major diabetic episode” for causing him to vote his ex-wife’s absentee ballot in October 2016. Curtis, 57, told District Judge Julie Hoskins Friday it was “a customary thing” for him to fill out his wife’s ballot and he didn’t know it was illegal, but he said he didn’t remember doing it. In October of 2016, Kelly Curtis called the Weld County Clerk and Recorder’s Office to obtain her mail-in ballot. She was told she had already voted, CBS Denver reports.  Read More

Kansas: Kobach charges two with voting in Kansas, Colorado | The Kansas City Star

Less than a day after President Donald Trump dismantled his voter fraud commission, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach has filed criminal charges against two people he says voted illegally in the 2016 election. Kobach, a candidate for Kansas governor who had served as the commission’s vice chair, obtained prosecutorial power in 2015 and is the only secretary of state in the nation with such authority. He has filed charges against 15 people since then for a variety of election crimes, resulting in nine convictions or plea deals and one dismissal. The remaining five cases, including the charges announced Thursday, remain pending. Most of those cases have involved U.S. citizens who have allegedly voted in more than one jurisdiction rather than non-citizens, despite Kobach’s claims that hundreds of non-citizens are on the voter rolls. Read More

Voting Blogs: Much ado about nothing in Alabama “fraud” charges | Election Updates

At the risk of being lost down a rabbit hole and subject to endless trolling, I just have to weigh in on the so-called evidence of vote fraud that was contained in Roy Moore’s court filing, in which he tried to get a delay in having the vote certified.  (The reason I decided to plow ahead is that Moore’s filing points out an interesting pattern in the precinct returns — it’s just that it’s not evidence of vote fraud.) There are a lot of claims made in Moore’s filing, and I don’t pretend to have time to take them all on.  The one that has the look of seriousness is based on some number crunching by Philip Evans, an electrical engineer from South Carolina who has taken a look at the precinct-level election returns from Jefferson County (Birmingham) and declared them to be impossibly skewed — or, as Mr. Evans  puts it, based on analyzing more than one hundred elections, “never has there been the level of statistical proof on the scale of Jefferson County” that the results were fabricated. Read More