(Chuck Muth) – This one is long, so don’t bother reading it unless you’re interested in facts, not fake news, regarding Nevada’s new-but-not-improved general election voting process that was just approved during a special session of the Legislature.
Partisans on both sides of this issue are guilty of providing false information soaked in hyperbole which is succeeding in nothing more than confusing voters. Most importantly, know this…
The November election will NOT be an ALL mail-in election like the primary. You’ll have the CHOICE to vote by mail, vote early in-person or vote in-person on Election Day.
And unlike in the primary, you’ll be able to vote in-person using the traditional voting MACHINE, not simply fill out a provisional mail-in ballot on Election Day.
And there will be hundreds of in-person voting locations throughout the state in November, unlike the 19 (three in Clark County) that were open on Election Day in June.
And you’ll be able to vote early using a voting machine in November, not just drop your mail-in ballot in a box at a specified location if you don’t trust the post office.
Some additional points…
First, it is indisputable that mail-in ballots have a greater POTENTIAL for voter fraud than in-person voting, as well as a higher chance that your ballot might not be received (ever had a birthday card get lost in the mail?) or might not be counted for various reasons.
In fact, in the June primary election – which was an all-mail election – over 10,000 mail-in ballots weren’t counted when only 30% of voters cast a ballot. That number will surely skyrocket in the general election when far more people actually vote.
Now consider the fact that Harry Reid beat John Ensign for Nevada’s statewide U.S. Senate seat in 1998 by all of 428 votes. So don’t even try to tell me all those rejected ballots couldn’t sway a close general election this November. Of course they could.
Secondly, Nevadans have – and have had for decades – the ability to request an absentee ballot that can be mailed in rather than voting in person. So providing a “safe” means for voters who are afraid of catching the CHINA-19 virus in November already exists. Claims to the contrary by the left are an outright lie.
The real difference between the two types of mail-in balloting is that under the previous system a voter had to REQUEST an absentee ballot whereby the Democrats’ new system will AUTOMATICALLY mail a ballot to EVERY voter – including people who don’t want them and won’t use them since they’re going to vote in-person like they’ve always done.
This system of automatically mailing ballots to people who won’t vote-by-mail is going to waste MILLIONS of dollars that Nevada just doesn’t have these days thanks to the #SisolakShutdown. Shouldn’t that money be used, you know, for “the children” or “education” instead?
Thirdly, lefties who claim there’s zero evidence of “widespread” election fraud are themselves perpetrating a fraud on voters. Ditto with their claims that common sense policies to protect election security – such as requiring a photo ID to cast a ballot – are efforts to “suppress” the vote, especially the minority vote.
What a load of crap.
The fact is, there HAVE been examples of voter fraud committed, caught and prosecuted in Nevada. So it’s not just that there’s a *potential* for voter fraud. We’ve seen it. It’s real. And perpetrated by both Democrats AND Republicans (hello, Gary Horrocks).
That’s why the left dishonestly uses the qualifier “widespread.” But this isn’t necessarily true either. Two things too many Nevadans don’t understand about this…
(1) The Secretary of State has, by law, only very limited powers to INITIATE a voter fraud investigation proactively. Generally speaking, the SoS must receive a documented complaint alleging voter fraud in order to investigate.
So it’s up to the Republican Party to identify possible voter fraud and report it. And there were PLENTY of suspicious votes cast in the primary that deserved attention. But if the party won’t do the spadework, the SoS office’s hands are pretty much tied.
(2) Even if the SoS could launch its own investigations absent a complaint, it has very few investigators on staff to follow up in what is usually a long, painstaking process.
So the fact that incidences of documented voter fraud aren’t “widespread” is more likely due to the absence of reported violations or not having enough investigators. Just because you don’t go looking for cockroaches under your house doesn’t mean they ain’t there.
Some Republicans aren’t much better on this issue.
For example, former Nevada Secretary of State and ex-Sen. Dean Heller went on TV this morning and claimed people could “vote more than once” and won’t be prosecuted. This is absolutely false.
Systems are already in place to prevent someone from voting both by mail and in-person.
If someone votes in person and then tries to mail in their ballot, the system automatically rejects the mail-in ballot.
If someone votes by mail and then tries to vote in-person, election workers at the polling location know that a mail-in ballot has already been received and the person isn’t allowed to vote in-person.
Now, as for prosecutions of people who DO try to vote twice, those are rare occasions and, as often as not, are simply elderly voters, some with documented dementia, who forgot they’d already voted before casting their second ballot (a prime target for ballot harversters).
It’s sad, but it does happen. And when it does, it’s not something you prosecute. Heller knows this and should be embarrassed for spreading such “fake news.”
As for “ballot harvesting” – where non-family members are allowed to collect ballots and turn them in (or not) – that’s the worst part of the new “emergency” voting system we’re now going with (absent a successful lawsuit to block it).
But elections have consequences and Democrats were able to ram this through. That’s the reality. So Republicans have no choice but to fight fire with fire and IMMEDIATELY begin developing their own ballot harvesting operation. Whining ain’t gonna get the job done.
Lastly, let me touch on signature verification since that’s a subject I’ve had questions about for a long time.
I spoke this morning with Deputy Secretary of State Wayne Thorley – one of the most competent government officials in the state today. And he walked me through the process.
First, EVERY mail-in or absentee ballot is reviewed – in which the signature on the mail-in ballot is compared to the signature on file with the Election Department or County Clerk – not just a “random sample.” EVERY mail-in ballot.
In Clark and Washoe counties, the signature verification process begins with an optical electronic scan. Any ballots received that don’t match via the optical scan are then set aside and manually reviewed by election workers.
In the other 15 counties without optical scan software, every ballot is manually reviewed for signature match by human beings.
Nevertheless, the signature verification system isn’t perfect, as documented after the June primary by Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist Victor Joecks. As Joecks’ column demonstrated, the POTENTIAL for “widespread” fraud is far higher than in-person voting.
I’ll close with this…
On Tuesday, Democrat Rep. Susie Q. Lee (D-NV) twit-tweeted: “Absentee voting and mail-in voting are the same thing.”
No, they’re not. Which means Ms. Lee is either incredibly ignorant or incredibly dishonest…or both.
Again, with absentee ballots the voter must REQUEST a ballot to mail in. With mail-in voting, like what the Nevada Legislature just passed, every voter is AUTOMATICALLY mailed a ballot.
And for some reason the Trump campaign missed this when the President voiced support for Florida’s “mail-in” system during his press conference yesterday.
For the record, Florida doesn’t have “mail-in voting.” It has the same absentee ballot system Nevada had before the change this week. Also, unlike Nevada now, Florida continues to BAN ballot harvesting.
In addition, ballots that are mailed must be RECEIVED by the close of polls on election day, not postmarked by midnight on election day. This is critical if we want to be able to know the winners of most races on election night instead of having to wait days, if not weeks, before the results are known.
So Florida and Nevada are completely different when it comes to voting by mail because of the specifics of their laws, not because Florida has a Republican governor and we have a Democrat clubhouse governor (the most inept in the nation).
And with that, class dismissed.
FAMOUS LAST WORDS
“After a relentless campaign blaming bars, restaurants, and clubs for the resurgence of COVID-19 in Switzerland, the Swiss government issued a clarification that represented less than 3.5 percent of transmissions, with the highest proportion within households. …
“Incidentally, schools, which no one really seems to blame in Switzerland – less hysterical media? – started reopening on May 11th and account for 0.3% of the transmissions that could be traced, with two likely cases.”
– Prof. Francois Balloux, director of the UCL Genetics Institute at the University College London (h/t: Unleash Prosperity)
(Mr. Muth is president of CitizenOutreach.org and publisher of NevadaNewsandViews.com. He blogs at MuthsTruths.com. His views are his own.)