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Election fraud

One of the Obama conspiracy theories is that Obama won the presidency through election fraud. Election fraud conspiracy theories are making the rounds again, and an email forwarded to me by Arnold Carl Tapp pointed me to the article, “Illegal Votes could Decide Election” on a website called Patriot Update.1 The article opens up with this statement:

It is sad that liberals fight so hard to enable voter fraud.

In a way this is true. The American Civil Liberties Union, for example, is challenging voter ID laws, laws that help to prevent voter fraud due to someone impersonating a registered voter at the polls. Conservatives argue that in a close election, even a few fraudulent votes could change the result. The problem with that idea is that the actual number of cases of verified voter impersonation is vanishingly small. Before voter ID laws, there were only a handful of cases of proven impersonation cases, for example 4 in the last ten years in Texas, a state with more than the national average, according to the ABC News article “Voter Fraud: Non-Existent Problem or Election-Threatening Epidemic?” Nationwide the number of convictions for impersonation fraud comprise .00000013% of votes.

Various estimates of the number of registered voters without a valid photo ID are put forward. States get these estimates by attempting to match voter registration and DMV records.2 The exact numbers can be questioned, but they are certainly large. For example, North Carolina determined that 138,425 persons participated in the 2012 election who did not have a photo ID, and would have been unable to vote had there been a voter ID law in place. Compare 138,425 real voters in one medium-sized state with 26 fraud convictions nationwide.

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My state of South Carolina has a very permissive voter ID law that says that if you have a reasonable impediment to getting an ID, you can still vote (on a paper ballot) after signing an affidavit as to the reason. The voter gets to decide what is reasonable. The problem is that the pamphlets on the new voter ID law say on the front: “VOTERS WILL BE ASKED TO SHOW ONE OF THESE PHOTO IDs BEFORE VOTING IN PERSON.” That’s true—voters will be asked that. But you have to turn the card over to see that you can vote anyway if there’s something that prevents you from getting an ID.

It becomes abundantly clear that liberals would prefer millions of legitimate registered voters to be able to cast their ballots, even if it means tolerating 26 impersonators. So I say:

It is sad that conservatives fight so hard to prevent eligible voters from voting.

I will be serving as a poll manager next Tuesday in a precinct that has about 1,3oo voters. On the morning of the election I will take an oath that says:

We do solemnly swear that we will conduct this election according to law and will allow no person to vote who is not entitled by law to vote in this election, and we will not unlawfully assist any voter to prepare his ballot and will not advise any voter as to how he should vote at this election.

That means that I will be enforcing the South Carolina voter ID law, and I am going to make darned sure that there is no detectible fraud in my precinct, and darned sure that every qualified voter gets a chance to vote.3


1I’m on the mailing list for this guy named Arnold Carl Tapp and most days I receive one or more forwarded RWNJ articles from him (some written in large red letters). I don’t pay much attention, except that the other day I noticed Tapp as a commenter at Birther Report. My view is that Obama won through a grass roots effort to get people likely to vote for him to the polls, and to get new voters registered.

2I have worked extensively in the records matching field, and I know that most efforts are poor.

3It is extremely unlikely that anyone will show up without an ID (according to the county elections commission). Is that because everybody has an ID, or because those without an ID think they cannot vote?

I wrote an article back in June, “Voter Fraud (or the lack thereof),” that talked about the Cochran/McDaniel primary runoff race in Mississippi. McDaniel lost by 7,700 votes and claimed that voters, largely African-American, voted for his opponent. McDaniel alleged that these voters had previously voted in the Democratic Primary, making them in eligible to vote in the Republican runoff. While McDaniel made a big deal of this charge including examination of massive numbers of ballots, he waited 41 days to file his official challenge, after the deadline. The Mississippi Supreme Court rejected his appeal of a lower court decision refusing the challenge because it was late. See Reuters, “Mississippi Supreme Court rejects McDaniel Senate primary challenge.” Part of the controversy involved the actual and alleged errors by poll managers in recording which party a voter had selected in the primary election. I think such issues could be sorted out easily in South Carolina because the voter signs a list under the party heading where they vote (so they will spot an error) in addition to the poll manager recording the party on the electronic voter registration list. An out of sequence page and line number on the EVRL would be easy to spot in an automatic scan.

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Arpaio should disown the Cold Case Posse

When I started to write this article, the title was going to be, “Arpaio should dissolve the Cold Case Posse,” but then I realized that the Cold Case Posse is an independent non-profit corporation not run by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office: The MCSO didn’t charter it; they don’t fund it; they don’t oversee it; they can’t make it go away. They can, however, sever all ties with it.

In all of this birther stuff, the reason for the Cold Case Posse gets lost. They were chartered to look into unsolved homicides in Maricopa County, Arizona. Here’s what the Cold Case Posse web site says:

In October of 2006, Sheriff Arpaio ordered the creation of the MCSO Cold Case Posse (CCP). The purpose of the CCP was to assist in the investigation of Cold Case Homicides. Since its inception, the CCP has been placed under the guidance and control of The General Investigation Division’s Homicide Squad (GID).

Nothing on the CCP web site suggests that they have ever actually assisted any homicide investigation, much less solved any cold cases. It’s 100% Obama birth certificate. So if they aren’t doing what they are supposed to do, then they shouldn’t exist.

More importantly, the Cold Case Posse with their wild accusations, fabricated evidence, crazy conspiracy theories, lack of proper law enforcement procedures, grandstanding, and use of unqualified experts puts a permanent taint on anything they might do in the future. That is, any evidence they developed in an attempt to solve a cold case could be impeached by the fact that they faked evidence, lied, and didn’t know what they are talking about in the past when they “investigated” President Obama’s birth certificate. Using the Cold Case Posse to develop evidence in a cold case homicide investigation would be like giving a murderer a

Get out of jail free card from Monopoly board game.

The Cold Case shuffle

The patience of birthers with the Cold Case Posse amazes me still.

Essentially the Cold Case Posse says:

  1. Look at all this evidence, but it’s not convincing.
  2. We’re keeping private all the evidence that is convincing.

Take the Reed Hayes report: Finally the Cold Case Posse has a real person who has some expertise in something, who has testified in court on multiple occasions about something. What does the his report say? I don’t know; they haven’t released it. I can guarantee you that if it was really damning, they would have called a press conference and released a slick YouTube video narrated by Mark Gillar. But they haven’t released it, and the only reason for that is that it either doesn’t say what they claimed, or they know it would not stand up to criticism.

Nothing they have released to date has stood up to criticism, the faked vital statistics manual, the whole business of “African, their signature “layers” argument of forgery. So, they just say that the “real proof” ™  is there, only it is kept secret because it is an ongoing law enforcement investigation. Investigation of what by whom? Zullo and his non-profit charity volunteers are not law enforcement; they represent no jurisdiction; they haven’t even stated a charge they think they are investigating. It’s just another bunch of birthers playing grownup.

This is both laughable and pathetic, and like a dog, birthers lap this vomit up.

The ultimate insult

I don’t dabble in collecting coins and I totally missed the release of the Chester A. Arthur $1 coin last January 5. There has to be a wonderful irony to our first post-founding-generation US President born to a British subject being commemorated on US coinage the same year that our second US President born to a British subject father is running for re-election. You can see the story below and click the image to go to the US Mint web site (where you can learn about other coins in the Presidential $1 Series).

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The only reason I found this was that I was researching what forms the second part of the one-two punch from the government, this time what has to be  the ultimate insult to the birthers. The story flashed by in one of those below screen scrolling things on CNN (that I have running in a window on the computer monitor) and I turned up the volume in time to catch the story. It appears that there has been a leak of information from the Treasury about a coin that wasn’t supposed to be announced until Summer.

Image of $2 coin showing Australian aboriginee and USACNN reports that the US Mint has already been minting and stockpiling the new $2 coin that features the White House on the front and the face of a “generic” African-featured male on the back. The design is by Randall E. Pershall, who has designed several other US coins as well as coins for Australia and New Zealand.  A Congressional task force that began work in 2005 recommended the coin as the best way to commemorate the contribution of Africans slave labor in the construction of the federal city. According to the Associated Press:

Slaves were the largest labor pool when Congress in 1790 decided to create a new national capital along the Potomac surrounded by the two slave-owning states of Maryland and Virginia.

Over the next decade, local farmers rented out their slaves for an average of $55 a year to help build the Capitol, the White House, the Treasury Department and the streets laid out by city planner Pierre L’Enfant.

CNN says the Treasury will issue an NPRM for a new regulation to require mandatory acceptance of the $2 in all vending machines by June 30, 2016, so I guess this is not a one-time souvenir. A press conference is scheduled for Monday morning at 10 AM at the Treasury.

I flipped over to Fox news and they were almost apoplectic in their denunciation of what they called a “transparent pandering to shore up weakening African-American  and other minority support in the 2012 election.”  Remind me to keep all the radios off when Limbaugh comes on Monday.

Personally, I’m all for this. When I traveled to Peru they had coins that were worth enough to actually buy something. You could go down to the convenience store and get a bottle of water and a sandwich and not have to dig out your wallet. The guys down there all have leather coin purses on their belts. I was a big fan of the US $1 coin, but merchants kept looking at me funny when I tried to use them.

The birthers are going to hate it. Now every time they get change, they will be reminded of the country’s first African-American President.

I’m starting a contest for the best “nickname” for the new coin.

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The Georgia Birther ballot challenge

As I start this editorial, I’m not quite sure what I’m going to say. The story of the Georgia ballot challenge to Barack Obama’s eligibility is a fascinating, rich and multi-layered story with twists and turns and surprising connections. However, so much of that story was received in confidence that I don’t think I can write it, at least not now. What I will do is hold up the mirror and talk about how I feel and observe what I see not happening.

I’ve spent a lot of editorial energy on this site criticizing birthers and particularly their methods. I decry smears. I decry lies. I decry legal incompetence and frivolous lawsuits. But for once the Birthers have done the right thing.

The people of the State of Georgia in their wisdom have enacted legislation that allows Georgia voters to challenge the eligibility of candidates to appear on ballots in Georgia. The administrative lawsuit, Farrar v Obama, to be heard this month in Atlanta is an exercise by Georgia citizens of their legal rights to challenge what the Georgia Secretary of State did in approving Barack Obama for the 2012 primary ballot. Judge Malihi agreed when rejecting a motion to dismiss by Obama’s attorney Michael Jablonski.

Don’t misunderstand. I think Birther claims are the worst kind of nonsense. There are no legitimate grounds under which Barack Obama can be excluded from the presidential ballot, but that is beside the point. Birthers believe otherwise, and in Georgia they have the legal right to have those claims examined in court. So I applaud the birthers for following the law and seeking to have their grievances examined in an appropriate venue. What I fail to see is any respected anti-birther raising an objection to the Georgia process. Both sides have come together to agree on the rules of the contest.

That’s for now. There are a number of factors that will certainly upset the idyllic scene. The first factor is Orly Taitz, one of the plaintiffs’ attorneys. Keep in mind that the success the Birthers have had in Georgia is not due to Orly Taitz. She didn’t guide them through the process, and she didn’t write the motion that prevailed and prevented dismissal. We can expect Orly to engage in the same deplorable legal demeanor that we’ve seen before. The second factor is that there will be a winner and there will be a loser, and this has to happen advance of the March 6 Georgia Primary. The birthers, specifically, will lose. Once that happens, they will crucify Judge Malihi and deny the validity of the process that they themselves selected. It’s their nature.

Birther poll revisited

I first wrote about this WorldNetDaily poll two years ago. WND asked its readers to respond to the following question:

Under what circumstances will the truth about Obama’s birth finally be revealed?

It turns out that only 1% (22 out of 3382) anticipated this eventual outcome: “He finally steps up to the plate, and releases his long-form, hospital birth certificate.” President Obama did indeed release his long-form, hospital birth certificate in April of last year. Only 1% gave a second correct answer: “Get over it. He’s already disclosed the truth that he was born in Hawaii.”

As I wrote back in 2010, the most bizarre aspect of the poll is the by far most popular (43%)  answer: “The truth is already out there, that he is hiding information precluding him from being eligible for the presidency.” What they are saying is that they are convinced by evidence that they don’t have. I am reminded of a quote from the Bible: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”1 By that definition, the birther movement is a faith based system.

Another popular response (15%) says that the new Congress will take over and issue a conclusion. So far there is no indication that the new Congress elected in 2010 will address the issue.

Another minority response (5%) said “A civil lawsuit will finally see success.”  I think it likely that one or more civil suits will reach a decision on the merits this year. Whether WND readers will call them “successes” remains to be seen.

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1Hebrews 11:1