Can someone who isn’t an American citizen illegally register and vote in Virginia’s elections? Yes. Can a felon whose rights haven’t been restored vote undetected in Virginia? Yes. Can someone be registered to vote in Virginia and another state and illegally cast ballots in both places? Yes. State and local election officials acknowledge all those crimes can happen in the Old Dominion because the state’s voter rolls aren’t airtight. Even with those gaps, the same officials and a prominent election expert argue there’s no evidence of widespread voter fraud. They reject President Donald Trump’s often-repeated but unverified claim that millions of noncitizens illegally voted against him in November. “If you want to find thousands or even millions of people who committed voter fraud, good luck with that, because there’s no way that’s true,” said David Becker, lead author of a 2012 Pew Center on The States study of the nation’s voter registration systems. Court records back him up where Virginia’s concerned.
A review of Circuit Court filings for most of Virginia’s cities and counties show there were 91 such convictions over a 10-year period ending in 2015. By comparison, voters cast 18.3 million ballots in seven statewide elections during the same time period, according to election records.
Fifty-five convictions were connected to one scandal in Wise County, in which a town manager pleaded guilty to multiple charges related to rigging a 2004 Appalachia town election.
Most of the rest – 30 convictions – were in Norfolk, where all but four of the voters were found guilty of illegally casting ballots in the 2008 or 2012 presidential elections, records show.