Check out my video. It’s pretty funny and it shows us that we need to fix our elections. Share it!
“I think I’m going to be sick,” I said to my friend as we sat down to eat. It was the early 2000’s and I was part of the first generation of online daters. Back then there was no Tinder or Bumble. We used AOL and talked to girls through instant messages. I looked over at the girl behind the counter. Her name tag matched the girl to whom I had been talking. Her voice matched what I had heard on the phone, but it wasn’t the same girl. I had seen a picture of her. She was a thin brunette with large breasts and a seductive look on her face. The girl who had given us our food was about 5 feet tall and had to be over 200 pounds. I didn’t want to accept it, but I knew the truth. The girl had pretended to be somebody she was not. This phenomenon has become so common that there is even a word for it now – catfishing. I learned an important lesson that day. You have no idea that a person is who they claim to be until you verify it.
I once again have that sick feeling and this time it is far more important. President Trump finished election night with massive leads in almost all of the swing states. Unfortunately, many states allow votes to be counted that we have less verification of who they are coming from than I had with that girl. These mail-in ballots could have been sent in by anybody. In fact, I pick up the mail from the mailbox at my apartment, so I easily could have taken my roommate’s ballot, filled it out, and sent it in to be counted. I looked at the ballot. There is no verification process that would have prevented me from doing that. Most states have made catfishing the ballot box easier than catfishing a naïve, girl-crazed boy.
We have to fix our voting system so that we know who we are dealing with. I got better at it when it came to online dating, so we can use some of the same concepts. Generally, some sort of visual proof is necessary to figure out if a person is who they say they are. They didn’t have reverse web searches back then, and even now those do not always find the picture you’re looking for. Some guys would just assume that if a girl sent pictures that were too attractive she was fake, but that is not always the case, and you don’t want to miss out on a girl who really is the hot girl in the pictures. I’m looking at you, Minnesota Megan.
The first verification method I experimented with was to get multiple pictures instead of trusting just one. It has the benefit of preventing a girl (or maybe even a guy) from grabbing any old photo off the internet and saying it is them. It is an improvement, but you can find multiple pictures of the same girl all over the web, so it is also an easily beatable system. What you have to do is ask the person to send you real-time, spontaneously posed pictures. For example, you would tell the girl to send you a picture of her posing with her pinky to her mouth like Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers movies. Then tell her to send a picture of her balancing a book on her head. Generally, if she can send you those pictures immediately, she is really the girl photographed.
We can use that method to verify voters, but it poses many logistical problems. We need to trust the people doing the verification, so each voting precinct would have to have people supporting both candidates there for the verification process. It would be a tedious and lengthy undertaking, as every single mail-in voter would need to be contacted, one at a time, to confirm their identity matches the name on the ballot, pose for the random pictures and text or email them in, and confirm that the vote on the ballot is the correct vote that they sent in. As you can see, the randomly posed picture solution would be very difficult to pull off without it taking years.
Fortunately, I eventually figured out the one foolproof way to know that you are speaking to the person in the pictures. The only way to be sure is to physically meet the girl in person and match the picture to the actual human being. I know it’s a crazy concept, but I haven’t looked directly at a girl and been fooled into thinking she was someone else since Hayley Mills. How can we put this approach into practice in our elections? Easy. All we have to do is require people to vote in person on Election Day so that we can match them to the photo identification that they provide.
A very smart lawyer that I know basically told me that because Democrats made fraudulent votes nearly impossible to prove, those votes are legal and we shouldn’t say that they are fraudulent. Fine. Let’s just say that the Democrats are catfishing us. He also implied that the only thing we can do is try to get the Democrats who are in power to change the fraudulent system that got them into power in the first place. Good luck with that. I say we need to fight and fight now. If we don’t we may end up in a four-year relationship with Joe Biden, which would certainly be the end of our love affair with liberty.
There should be an area of agreement between all reasonable people in the United States. For our country to survive we must be able to trust the integrity of our elections. If elected officials are abusing their power like they are in places like California right now, we need to have the ability to vote those people out of office or else there is no check against tyranny. When dishonest politicians are able to steal elections, they will.
Both Democrats and Republicans say that they want honest and fair elections. Both parties have complained about the integrity of our recent and upcoming elections. Unfortunately, they have different ideas about what is taking away the trust in our elections. We heard a lot from Democrats about Russian interference in the 2016 election. In fact, they have spent much of the last 4 years investigating it over and over again. Many of you may wonder how they allege that the Russians changed the outcome in 2016. Did they somehow hack our voting systems and change the vote counts? Did they fly in Russians to swing states where they cast illegal votes? No. The alleged Russian interference is that they said mean things about Hillary Clinton on Facebook. While that may be frustrating to Hillary fans, it does not actually make it easier for anybody to cast fraudulent votes. Plus, how many of you would change your vote because some stranger said something mean on Facebook?
Republicans ask a different question about voting that we should all agree is important. Do we know who is casting the votes in our elections and that no shenanigans are happening with those votes? If we don’t it opens the door to voter fraud, stolen elections, and the end of our government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Do not fall for the media line that very few people get convicted of voter fraud so nobody does it. That’s like saying a Las Vegas club that doesn’t check ID’s has no underage people inside because no underage people got caught.
How can we be more confident about who is voting and that they are correctly counted? The only way to be sure is to require in person voting, on Election Day, with matching photo ID to verify that the person is who they say they are. It’s easy and it’s common sense. Unfortunately, not everybody wants to have honest elections.
Each state sets up their own election laws, so some are far more reliable than others. Some are unwisely pushing for mail-in voting, with nobody there to verify that the person who filled out the ballot is the actual person that the ballot belongs to, and with no guarantee that the ballot will be delivered or counted. In fact, there is already an investigation into military mail-in ballots that were apparently opened and thrown into the garbage in Pennsylvania. The only time a mail-in ballot should be accepted is for overseas military personnel. All 50 states now allow some form of mail-in voting, so nobody gets a perfect score on preventing voter fraud, but some states at least have a few precautions set up.
Unfortunately, other states not only lack rules to prevent election shenanigans, but they come up with ideas to make cheating so easy that the Houston Astros wish they had thought of it. “Ballot harvesting” is the shady practice of allowing a third party to collect ballots and deliver them to be counted. This has all of the negatives of mail-in voting with the added problem of having partisan people targeting which ballots to bring in. In California this practice caused congressional districts that had always voted one way to flip. In many of the cases the returns had one candidate ahead at the end of election night only to swing wildly to the other side the next day. Whenever the results from election night change like that it raises major red flags as to the integrity of those votes.
It’s pretty unbelievable, but some states do not even require you to show identification when you go to vote. That means we have no idea who is casting votes in those states. Here in California, if I walked into a polling place and said my name is Fred Johnson, then I’m Fred Johnson. Apparently in Pennsylvania their Secretary of State said that they would not even throw out a ballot if the signature doesn’t match.
What we need is a report card to know which states have safe enough elections to trust the outcome. Below you will find it, with a grade based on how many precautions are set up to make sure that each vote has been properly cast by the correct, legal voter.
|State||Voting Only on Election Day||Voting In Person Only||ID Required to Verify Who Is Voting||Ballot Harvesting and Other Notable Rules||Grade|
|Alabama||Yes||No, but an excuse is required||Yes||Absentee ballots require witnesses and must be received before the close of polling||A|
|Alaska||No||No||Yes, but non-photo ID accepted||A special needs voter can have a representative return a ballot||C|
|Arizona||No||No||Yes, but non-photo ID accepted||Family member, household member, or caregiver can return ballots||C|
|Arkansas||No||No, but an excuse is required||Yes||Ballot harvesting allowed, but limit two ballots per authorized agent||B|
|California||No||No, and everyone receives a mailed ballot||No||Ballot harvesting allowed||F|
|Colorado||No||No, all mail-in election||No||Ballot harvesting allowed||F|
|Connecticut||Yes||No, but an excuse is required||Yes, but non-photo ID accepted||Others can return votes for disabled voters, with restrictions||B|
|Delaware||Yes, but early voting passed for 2022||No||ID is requested, but voters can sign an affidavit to avoid showing ID||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||D|
|Florida||No||No||Yes||Others can return votes for disabled voters, with restrictions||C|
|Georgia||No||No||Yes||Others can return votes for disabled voters, with restrictions||C|
|Hawaii||No||No, all mail-in election||ID is requested, but voters can recite their date of birth and address instead||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|Idaho||No||No||ID is requested, but voters can sign an affidavit to avoid showing ID||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|Illinois||No||No||No||Ballot harvesting allowed||F|
|Indiana||No||No, but an excuse is required, and coronavirus is not a valid excuse||Yes||Mail ballots must be received before the close of polling||B|
|Iowa||No||No||Yes, or another voter can vouch for their identity||Ballot harvesting allowed||D|
|Kansas||No||No||Yes||Ballot harvesting allowed||D|
|Kentucky||Yes||No, but an excuse is required||Yes||Others can return votes for disabled voter, with restrictions||A|
|Louisiana||No||No, but an excuse is required, and coronavirus is not a valid excuse||ID is requested, but voters can sign an affidavit to avoid showing ID||Mail ballots require a witness signature and must be received before the close of polling||B|
|Maine||No||No||No||Ballot harvesting allowed, but limited to five at a time||F|
|Maryland||No||No||No||Ballot harvesting allowed||F|
|Massachusetts||No||No||No||Ballots may be delivered by a family member or from a healthcare facility||F|
|Michigan||No||No||ID is requested, but voters can sign an affidavit to avoid showing ID||Family member or certified election assistant can deliver ballots. Ballots must be received by 6 pm on Election Day||D|
|Minnesota||No||No||No||Designated agent can return up to three ballots||F|
|Mississippi||Yes||No, but an excuse is required||Yes||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed. Mail ballots require witnesses and must be received before the close of polling||B|
|Missouri||Yes||No||Yes, but non-photo is accepted||Ballots can be returned by a family member or a team of election authorities and require witness signatures||B|
|Montana||No||No||Yes, but non-photo is accepted||Law limited who could return ballots and only six per person, but a judge has held up the law||D|
|Nebraska||No||No||No||Others can return up to two ballots except for campaign workers||D|
|Nevada||No||No, and everyone receives a mailed ballot||No||Ballots may be returned by a family member||F|
|New Hampshire||Yes||No, but an excuse is required||If ID is not presented, the voter signs a challenged voter affidavit and votes a regular ballot. After the election a mailing is sent and the voter must sign and return it; if it is not returned, the voter will be investigated for voter fraud.||Family members, nursing home staff, and residential care staff can return up to four ballots which must be received before the close of polling||B|
|New Jersey||No||No, and everyone receives a mailed ballot||No||An authorized messenger can return up to three ballots||F|
|New Mexico||No||No||No||A caregiver or immediate family member can return ballots||F|
|New York||No||No, but an excuse is required||No||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|North Carolina||No||No||No, although a voter ID law was passed by voters, it was blocked by an Obama appointed judge.||Ballots require witness signature and may be returned by a near relative or legal guardian||F|
|North Dakota||No||No||Yes||Others can deliver up to four ballots, cannot be a candidate or be compensated||C|
|Ohio||No||No||Yes, but non-photo is accepted||Ballots can be returned by a family member||D|
|Oklahoma||No||No||Yes, but non-photo is accepted||Copy of ID, notarized ballot, or two witness signatures required||C|
|Oregon||No||No, all mail-in election||No||Ballot harvesting allowed||F|
|Pennsylvania||No||No||No||If voter becomes too sick to vote a representative, deputy sheriff or constable can deliver an emergency absentee ballot||F|
|Rhode Island||No||No||Yes||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||D|
|South Carolina||Yes||No, but an excuse is required, and coronavirus is not a valid excuse||Yes||Ballots may be returned by others except candidates or paid campaign workers and require witness signatures||A|
|South Dakota||No||No||ID is requested, but voters can sign an affidavit to avoid showing ID||Photo ID required for a mail ballot. An authorized messenger may deliver ballots, but if more than one they must notify the person in charge of the election||D|
|Tennessee||No||No, and a judge ordered them to allow no-excuse absentee voting||Yes||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||D|
|Texas||No||No, but an excuse is required||Photo ID requested. Voters who do not possess an acceptable form of photo ID and cannot obtain one, may present a supporting form of ID and execute a Reasonable Impediment Declaration||Photo ID required for a mail ballot. A household member, relative or person lawfully assisting a voter who is disabled or cannot read the ballot may return the mail ballot||C|
|Utah||No||No, all mail-in election||No||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|Vermont||No||No, and everyone receives a mailed ballot||No||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|Virginia||No||No||Yes, but non-photo accepted||Witness signature required for mail ballots. A designated representative can return ballot for a voter who is incapacitated or hospitalized||C|
|Washington||No||No, all mail-in election||No||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|
|West Virginia||No||No, but an excuse is required||Yes, or be identified by a poll worker||Anyone can return up to two ballots||B|
|Wisconsin||No||No||Yes||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed. Photo ID required for a mail ballot and witness signature required||C|
|Wyoming||No||No||No||Unspecified if ballot harvesting is allowed||F|