Farah’s ‘Evidence’ of Voter Fraud

Joseph Farah of the Worldnutdaily is just sure that Obama stole the election through voter fraud, especially in Ohio. After spending several paragraphs explaining why he isn’t a conspiracy nut, along with irrelevant boilerplate about Bill Ayers and Saul Alinsky, he produces the “evidence” he has for his ridiculous claim:

Am I suggesting that the recent presidential election was stolen through voter fraud and manipulation?

Without a doubt.

Do I have evidence?

Yes, I have plenty of anecdotal evidence to show that it was committed by one side in the election in various ways. And I am convinced that at least 5 percent of the Democratic vote can be attributed to fraud – illegal voters, illegal campaign contributions, rigged balloting, intimidation at the polls, you name it.

Here’s just some of the evidence for the skeptical:

In September, the Columbus Dispatch in Ohio reported this sad and ugly news: “More than one out of every five registered Ohio voters is probably ineligible to vote. In two counties, the number of registered voters actually exceeds the voting-age population: Northwestern Ohio’s Wood County shows 109 registered voters for every 100 eligible, while in Lawrence County along the Ohio River it’s a mere 104 registered per 100 eligible. Another 31 counties show registrations at more than 90 percent of those eligible, a rate regarded as unrealistic by most voting experts. The national average is a little more than 70 percent. In a close presidential election where every vote might count, which ones to count might become paramount on Election Day – and in possible legal battles afterward.” The Dispatch asked Ohio’s chief elections official, Secretary of State Jon Husted, what could be done about this problem. His answer? Not enough. Nine months ago, he asked U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder for a personal meeting to discuss how to balance seemingly conflicting federal laws so he could pare Ohio’s dirty voter list without removing truly eligible voters. Holder’s office never even bothered to reply – to either Husted or the newspaper. What does that tell you? It tells me voter fraud is and was an important tactic in re-electing Holder’s boss and Democrats throughout the country. Anyway, we all know how Ohio voted.

I’ll take non sequiturs for $1000, Alex. These are the kinds of irrelevant stats that the right always uses to “prove” voter fraud, but the premise does not support the conclusion at all. The situation in Ohio that he cites is, in fact, quite normal and easily explained by perfectly mundane things that have nothing to do with voter fraud. The first clue is found in the article Farah dishonestly cites:

Of the Buckeye State’s 7.8 million registered voters, nearly 1.6 million are regarded as “ inactive.” That generally means either they haven’t voted in at least four years or they apparently have moved…

In February, the Pew Center on the States released a study called Inaccurate, Costly, and Inefficient showing that about 24 million U.S. voter registrations were no longer valid or had significant inaccuracies.

The research found: more than 1.8 million dead people listed as voters; about 2.75 million with voter registrations in more than one state; and about 12 million voter records with incorrect addresses, meaning either the voters moved or errors in the information make it unlikely any mailings can reach them.

The latter category is where you’ll find most of Ohio’s 1.6 million inactive voters.

Some of them are people who have moved and their records haven’t been update. Some of them have died (they make these lists by comparing the Qualified Voter File to the most recent census, which was in 2010, so a lot of people will have died in the meantime). And most of them are simple clerical errors — a missing middle initial, a missing apartment number, a slightly wrong street address (avenue rather than street, a juxtaposed number, etc). But the real problem here is the connection to actual voter fraud, which is non-existent. And that’s in the article he cites too:

Yet they are still officially registered to vote in Ohio and can cast a ballot if they provide a valid form of identification and their signature matches the one on file.

Which means that the chances of anyone fraudulently voting as one of those “excess” people on the rolls approaches zero. All of this is in the article that Farah cites, but he leaves it all out. Intellectual honesty is not one of his strong suits. Here’s his other bit of “evidence.”

How about Michigan – Romney’s home state? How did Obama win such a resounding victory when the polls showed the two candidates in a virtual tie? And how is it that Obama won by 9 points while Democrats suffered a string of defeats down the entire state ballot? For instance, Republicans maintained control of both the state House and the Supreme Court, while Democrats lost three ballot propositions.

Talk about distorting the data. A virtual tie? Only two polls since the beginning of August had shown Romney with any lead in Michigan, both done by the same little known polling company. Every single other poll over the last 90 days of the campaign showed Obama with a solid lead, from 3 to 14 points (with the lowest lead coming right after the 1st debate, then quickly moving back to Obama, like most other states). You can view all the polling data here.

And the idea that Democrats suffered a “string of defeats” downticket is a flat out lie. Sen. Debbie Stabenow won reelection by a full 20 points. And yes, Democrats did lose three ballot propositions. They also won three of them, including overturning the emergency manager law that Republicans pushed through in 2010. And the Supreme Court election was a split, one Republican and one Democrat won full 8 year terms (and the Republican just barely beat a Democrat who finished third, 23% to 22% — two of the top three finishers won the seats). And the Democrats picked up several seats in the House that were previously held by Republicans (the Senate was not up for election). So he’s wrong on everything here — it was not a tie and Democrats won lots of downticket races. I can tell you that those I know in the Democratic leadership in Michigan are quite happy with the results of the election.

Lastly he cites — seriously — James O’Keefe. If this is all they have, they have nothing.

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