Top 10 Ways to Stop Voter Fraud
[NOTE: The following is a partial list of CIC's legislative recommendations and other solutions to stop voter fraud that was prevalent in the 2000 presidential election. CIC is lobbying Congress and state legislatures to take these necessary steps to safeguard the electoral process in the upcoming 2002 and 2004 elections].
- Congressional Investigations. The first step is for Congress to fully exercise its constitutional duty of "oversight" by investigating the numerous instances of voter fraud in Florida and other states. Already Rep. Joe Scarborough (R-FL) has called for an investigation into the widespread and unfair discounting of thousands of absentee military ballots.
- Statewide Investigations. Those states where evidence of fraud was rampant - Florida, California, Missouri, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, to name a few --- should be encouraged to initiate investigations of their own. These states should follow the lead of Florida, which has already established an investigative task force.
- Establish Electoral Review Commission. Several bills were proposed in the last Congress (Election Reform Act S. 1, H.R. 5674, H.R. 5631) which will be reintroduced in the new 107th Congress with new bill numbers. All seek to establish a commission to address voting irregularities and fraud. One or more of these must be swiftly enacted.
- Strengthen Current Vote Fraud Laws. Many states have laws on the books against voter fraud but rarely, if ever, enforce them. Now is the time to strengthen the civil and penal penalties for vote fraud and to strongly enforce them. The Attorney Generals of California and Florida, for example, have their work cut out for them.
- Make Vote Fraud a "Federal" Crime. Congress should enact legislation making vote fraud of any kind a federal crime. This would be vigorously enforced by a new and ethical Department of Justice under Attorney General John Ashcroft.
- Standardized Ballots. States should eliminate punch-card ballots and replace them with simple, easy-to-read paper ballots. All machine votes should be authenticated with a verifiable paper trail at each precinct. Congress should consider establishing a separate, standardized paper ballot for presidential elections.
- Expand Military Voting Rights. As exemplified by the Florida debacle of 2000, thousands of military absentee ballots were unfairly discarded and not counted. Both houses of Congress should enact Rep. Bill Thomas' (R-CA) resolution (formerly H.R. 5174) and the Military Voting Rights Act (formerly H.R. 2685) which would make it easier for military personnel to vote by placing voting booths on all U.S. military installations.
- Create National Database of Criminal Voters. Congress should pass legislation creating a national database which assists states and individual counties in scrubbing their voter registration rolls of felons and convicts. Similarly, the INS should create and maintain a national database of known illegal aliens which performs the same task.
- Ban Campaigning & Voter Registration Drives in Prisons. The NAACP and other liberal groups have been registering prisoners with misdemeanors; liberal candidates (like Marion Barry in 1994) have exploited prisons for campaign visits. If campaigning in churches is prohibited, then campaigning in prisons should also be banned.
- Hold Media Accountable. The Voter News Service (and its liberal media subscribers) made an early call of victory for Gore in Florida costing George Bush thousands of votes in the central time zone of the panhandle. This erroneous reporting must be held accountable. Rep. Billy Tauzin (R-LA) has already pledged a congressional investigation. Legislation should be considered by Congress which forces the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to impose penalties and fines on any media outlet which reports false voting results in federal and congressional elections.