Election Fraud

With this election, we have heard a lot of complaints about election fraud, much of which is directed at the election process itself, e.g., rigged voting machines, voter fraud, etc.  I’ll be the first to admit that our elections are rigged, but at least where I live, there is little chance of voting fraud.  I cannot attest to what they do in other states, but as an election officer for over 10 years, I can tell you  exactly what we do here.  Our voting polls and election offices are overseen by officers of both major political parties plus observers from both parties.  We have paper ballots that are scanned and counted electronically and photographed so that both the paper and the electronic copies can be verified after the election and at any time up until the next election.  If there is any doubt, a recount can be called and independent observers from both parties can monitor the recount. Occasionally, mistakes are made, but they are few and we have to account for each one.  So there’s very little chance of significant error or fraud in the actual vote count.  If the process in other states is anything like our own, you can pretty well discount voting fraud.

But as I said, our elections are clearly rigged.  Election rigging, however, takes place long before people vote.  Election rigging is done primarily by the political parties, corporate owned media and election campaign spending, and is unfortunately almost entirely legal.  The political parties choose the candidates that people will vote for with little input from the public.  Politicians gerrymander districts and manipulate registration rules to disenfranchise as many voters of the opposing party as possible. And the corporate owned media controls who gets the exposure and what information available to voters.  Hillary Clinton’s nomination was secured by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) way back in 2008 and the DNC did everything possible to prevent Bernie Sanders or anyone else from competing on a level playing field.  The media helped by discounting Bernie (along with other viable candidates) and failing to give them the coverage they deserved.  All the free publicity given Trump by the corporate owned media helped defeat the Republican National Committee’s chosen candidates. Unlimited campaign spending ensured Republican control of Congress.

So if you are going to complain about election fraud, focus on the real problem. Focus on the rigging done by the political parties and the corporate owned media and not on voter fraud which pales in comparison.  The parties, the media and the big spenders determine who your candidates will be and you have very little to say about it. Only true election reform, which includes campaign spending limits and may include abolishment of political parties and divestment of corporate media ownership, will change it.