Three central Florida residents are the latest examples of Republicans ‘do as I say and not as I do’ regarding alleged voter fraud. All three were arrested for allegedly casting ballots out of state while also voting in Florida during the 2020 election.
An investigation by Orlando’s News 6 found that Jay Ketcik, Joan Halstead and John Rider all resided at The Villages and were registered Republicans in Florida. According to the outlet, Ketchik and Halstead had posts supportive of former President Donald Trump on their social media.
Republicans are quick to use the alleged existence of voter fraud to justify restricting voting rights. Still, in many instances, alleged cases of voter fraud involve members of their own party.
By all accounts, alleged voter fraud is extremely rare. It is not nearly prevalent enough to justify the fixation that Republicans across the country place on the issue. And on the rare occasion it does happen, built-in safeguards catch the alleged fraud, rarely impacting the outcome of an election.
Fraud certainly did not have an impact on the 2020 presidential election. An Associated Press investigation looked at six battleground states where Trump and allies alleged fraud, finding an insignificant number of questionable ballots. Out of more than 25 million ballots cast, approximately 475 questionable ballots were uncovered. (Read the full Associated Press investigation here).
In some cases, the alleged fraud was actually due to administrative error. For example, in Georgia nearly half of the 64 votes flagged by county election officials were due to administrative errors.
“Every credible examination has shown there was no widespread fraud” in the 2020 presidential election, Ben Hovland, a member of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, told the Associated Press. “Time and again when we have heard these claims and heard these allegations, and when you do a real investigation, you see that it is the exception and not the rule.”
While Republicans claim the flurry of legislation introduced post-2020 to “restore voter confidence,” the lack of confidence In the process was due to lies and manipulations of fact, not the actual process itself. Increased scrutiny is unwarranted and often leveraged to disenfranchise voters having a more significant impact on the process than virtually non-existent voter fraud.