I’ll reply one more time to Mr. Barker’s piece on voter fraud and the need for a “federal audit.” Mr. Barker stated, “But I do believe, along with 39% of Republican, Democrat, and Independent voters, that some level of election fraud was committed.” “Some level” of voter fraud occurs in every election, so you can count me among those who believe it. But “widespread” voter fraud is what Trump and his enablers were selling, and there is no evidence to support that claim.
Mr. Barker contested my claim about how many convictions of voter fraud there have been in the past. He wrote, “…actual convictions per year would be 52…” (I can’t help but feel like he’s proving my point here), and, “…the Heritage Foundation reported there have been 1,311 instances of proven voter fraud…” The Brennan Center for Justice did an analysis of those Heritage Foundation numbers. They found, “Only 105 cases come within the past five years, and 488 within the past 10 years. Thirty-two cases are from the 1980s and 1990s... Over the period considered by Heritage, there have been over 3 billion votes cast in federal elections alone, and many more when you include the state and local elections also covered in the database.” The only reason the Heritage Foundation is concerned with these minuscule numbers is that it gives Republicans an excuse for creating onerous voting laws that restrict ballot access for minorities who tend to vote Democrat. But that’s a topic for another discussion.
By his own account, Mr. Barker understands that there are roughly 52 convictions of voter fraud per year, and only 1,311 instances of voter fraud out of over 3 billion votes cast, according to the Heritage Foundation, which he cites. If he has followed the national news, or read my last letter, he will certainly know about the 86 lawsuits filed during the 2020 election, as well as investigations by state officials, that could not prove any voter fraud. This evidence all points in one direction - that voter fraud is not really a problem in the US, yet Mr. Barker draws the exact opposite conclusion. Mr. Barker has never cited any evidence whatsoever that there was any voter fraud in the 2020 election, yet he “believes” there was, and recommends a federal audit. That’s like auditing the US postal service because they lost a piece of mail. Yes, it happens, but it’s rare, and spending millions on an audit would be a waste of tax-payer dollars.
Finally, as I stated in my original letter, the majority of voters who “believe” there was voter fraud in this past election were Republicans. That’s the most significant finding of the study Mr. Barker cites. And the simple reason they believe that, despite evidence to the contrary, is because that’s what right-wing media and Republican leaders told them. So, we don’t have an election integrity problem in the U.S., we have a problem with the lies being broadcast daily in right-wing media, and by elected leaders, that result in the undermining of faith in our Democracy. If you want an investigation into that, sign me up.