John Tsarpalas: There is a topic that I’ve always been interested. And perhaps it is because I grew up in Chicago. And that’s vote fraud. It goes on all over the place around here in Illinois. I have seen many examples of it.
I am going to talk about the possibilities of it happening in your campaign and give you ideas on what to look for, how to protect yourself, and what needs to be done about it. So today on Commonwealthy #53, it’s Vote Fraud – Ballot Integrity.
I think the first thing you need to think about in the issue of vote fraud is what are you running for. Do you think it is going to happen? What’s the history of the area? Vote fraud tends to happen more in big cities, but not necessarily only there. Is this a partisan race? Is there a lot at stake? Would people be driven to cheat?
You need to think about that and make that decision before you bother to get into any kind of vote fraud prevention effort. However, if you are in a very partisan area or there is something going on here…
And also don’t forget about referendums here. There is a huge vested interest in passing a bond referendum or doing a tax hike or stopping a ballot initiative or something like that that’s going to cap spending or cut spending. Those union forces, people with a vested interest in those dollars will have a motivation to cheat.
Now, I am not saying that all unions cheat. I am not saying that all Democrats cheat. I am aware of cheating, provable situations. In fact, there was a book by Jim Laski, former alderman and former city clerk of Chicago. In fact, there are some YouTube interviews available. I will put a link to one of those YouTube interviews on the Commonwealthy website in the show notes.
His book was called “My Fall From Grace: City Hall to Prison Walls.” And in that book and in this interview too, he talked about some of the things they did to cheat. And so I’m using that as proof of cheating in the city of Chicago.
And the first thing they did to cheat was they would forge signatures on petitions. And they would sit around a table. It was called round tabling. And they would sign one, pass it to the next guy, sign it, and pass it to the next guy. He’d sign it. So the signatures were mixed up.
And they would just take people’s addresses and stuff out of phone books. And they would fill out their petitions that way.
And then he talked about absentee ballots. What they would do was they would literally get the absentee ballots before they were delivered to the polls. Back in those days in Illinois, the absentee ballots were delivered to the polls.
The Chicago machine, through the Board of Elections, would give the absentee ballots to the ward committeemen or the precinct captains. And they would open up the envelopes, change the ballot, and put it back in so it looked like it came from the person who filled it out.
If it was Democrat, they would leave it alone. If it was Republican, they would throw it away and they would put a different ballot in there and then continue on with the process and get it delivered to the polls. He confessed to doing this in this book. I mean, he talked about this. He had already gone to prison.
And there were things I saw. I was the former director of the Illinois Republican Party. Executive Director was my official title. In 2005 and 2006, the things I saw were frightening.
We were in a suburban area. This was the eighth congressional district. It was an open seat. The Democrats wanted it. It was a slightly more Republican area. It was largely a county known as DuPage County, which leans Republican but it has Democrat areas.
But they were out to win it. What I saw happen was nursing home vote fraud. How does this work? Well, the Board of Elections or someone arranges for a vote to be held early using the absentee ballots. And then judges, a Republican judge and a Democrat judge, would show up and go from room to room and help the people in the nursing home vote, which sounds great and that’s fine.
They would help them to mark the ballots in the way they wanted them marked. But there someone from both parties standing there watching it. And so they would be sure that what the person was requesting was happening.
What they did pull in DuPage County was, for instance, the early voting was going to happen the Thursday before the election. I should say the absentee voting in the nursing home. It was supposed to happen at 10 am on Thursday. The Republican judges would show up at 9:45 and the nursing home would say, “Oh what are you doing here today? Everyone was here yesterday.”
So the Democrats would call up, change the date, and not tell the Republican judges. They would show up with only Democrat judges. They would go through and vote the whole nursing home. And it was done. And there was nothing you could do to undo it. The vote had been taken.
So if you are in a partisan situation and you have nursing homes, you should check with your county Board of Elections and see if that is a possibility. Will they be doing some type of early voting in that nursing home or absentee voting? When will it happen? Make sure you are going to have judges there.
And what we realized to do in the future and has been done is we would contact that nursing home, find somebody in there who would be contacted, and we would make sure they would call us if there were any changes. Not just leave it up to the Democrats or Board of Elections to call the judges, but have a plant, someone within that nursing home, who if they showed up to vote would call us.
Some times it was someone living in that nursing home and we’d get a call. We’d have to get there immediately because they were in the middle of it. Then we could stop it, squawk about it, do whatever we could to stop it, and file suit about it. And/or the administration – make sure the administration knows that they should call to get your people there. So nursing homes are a place for fraud.
Back when we talked about absentee balloting in an earlier podcast, I talked about how I don’t like absentee ballots. They are fraught with different situations to sway the vote. Most of us have heard of stories of ballots from overseas being lost and they show up two weeks after the election and were never counted.
It’s easy for (again I am going to go back to accusing Democrats) someone in a post office or Board of Elections to take a bag of overseas mail and throw it in the corner and not find it for a while. And that’s because overseas mail from our troops tends to vote more Republican. They assume the mail in that bag is more heavily weighted for Republican, so by losing it, they’ve helped the cause.
I think that’s an absolute terrible, heinous crime. But what are you doing to do for overseas military personnel? Well, you are going to try to get that absentee ballot off to them and get it back in time and hope cheating doesn’t go on. You are going to scream and squawk when you find that that’s happened and you are going to try to make press out of it because that is about all you can do once the vote has been counted.
One of the things that I witnessed in 2006 in Illinois is we went down to the Cook County Board of Elections on election night to watch the count of the absentee ballots. They changed the voting laws in 2005 in Illinois to make it easier to vote. One of the things that they changed was where the absentee ballots were counted. They were set up to be counted centrally in each board of elections.
So I went with a couple of attorneys that evening to watch the count of the absentee ballots, which was supposed to happen after the polls closed. So we get to the Cook County Board of Elections. And what had happened? There were literally thousands and thousands of absentee ballots stacked up next to a counting machine.
However, they had been taken out of the envelopes, the envelopes thrown away, and there were just the ballots sitting there. There was no record of where they came from, who they were from, and no way to know if they had been tampered with over the weeks that they’ve been piling them up and opening them up. There was no way to know whether extra ballots had been thrown in the stack. Other ballots had disappeared.
We had no idea what to do about it. It was too late. It had been done. What should have happened: A lawsuit should have been filed. We had some estimates from attorneys on filing suits there after, but the Illinois Republican Party at that point in time did not have much money and it was decided that they could not afford to bring that suit.
So that situation actually still persists here in Illinois. It’s wrong. It’s crazy. There should be witnessing of the opening of the ballots and witnessing of the counting of the ballots, not no witnessing of the opening.
Other things that happened: back in 2006 here in the Illinois/Wisconsin border area, the Illinois Republican Party, which I worked for, didn’t have much money. We were kind of operating on very thin margin. But the Wisconsin Republican Party was doing better.
So the Wisconsin Republican Party with help from the Illinois Republican Party got the voter list for Illinois and they ran it against the voter list for Wisconsin. And this was after the vote. And they ran through everyone’s name and birthdate. And there were twelve thousand people who were registered and voted in 2006 in Illinois who were registered and voted in Wisconsin in 2006 with the exact same name and the exact same birthdate.
We know that Chicago machine people (and I don’t know if that’s who I should tag it with) and unions or liberals (I don’t know what group) were having people vote in Chicago, get on a bus, and drive up to Wisconsin so that they could influence that race up there, too.
They managed to get twelve thousand more votes in Wisconsin or twelve thousand more votes in Illinois, whichever way you want to look at it. But people voted twice. Absolutely illegal, not right. Lawsuits were filed. But what do you do after the vote was counted?
Something else that happens in big cities, and this happened in 2004 in Chicago: There were 42 precincts in the city of Chicago that had more than one hundred percent turnout. In other words, more people voted than were registered to vote in that precinct.
How can that happen? There is no Republican judge. Unfortunately you get into some areas and they are literally no Republicans around or no one wants to say that they are a Republican because quite frankly in the city, they do tend to neglect you for city services if you are a Republican. There is no one there to stop people from voting who aren’t registered. So them Democrats say, “Come on in and vote. Just vote.”
Something else that’s happened with recent election law changes is same day registration in voting. And again, it tends to happen more in Democrat areas. This is not illegal, but they will round up people that are not registered to vote and put them on a bus, take them to a polling place where they can get registered and can vote the same day.
And they make the case that this is good because people have been busy and they didn’t get registered to vote. But I would like to make a different case. Voting is a right and voting is a privilege. As Americans we have a responsibility to do what’s necessary to be good citizens.
And one of those in my mind is taking the time to register to vote. It is pretty easy if you move and you change your driver’s license. Most states you can do it right there. You just get registered. You figure out how to get yourself registered in advance in a legal way with a registrar.
I am terribly troubled by registration online. Who checks to see these people are registered are actual people? Now here in Illinois, they are supposed to then have an ID if they come in to vote if they registered in some way where no one ever saw their ID. Okay. Again, if you are in a district, in a precinct, where there is not judges from both sides, people are letting that skate.
It’s wrong for people who are not legal citizens to vote. It is steal a vote from a citizen by letting a noncitizen vote. It’s nullifying somebody else’s vote. Every fraudulent vote is nullifying someone’s vote.
Of course, there’s the one stand-by of even the dead vote twice in Chicago. And that happens a lot. People are dead and the local precinct committeeman knows that that person recently passed away but is still on the voter rolls.
One of the things that’s not in done in many jurisdiction is purging the voter rolls: just simply taking the list of people who died and taking them off. They don’t do it. They say, “It’s not right. It’s not fair. How do we know we don’t make a mistake?” There’s a whole lot of excuses.
Again, this garbage has got to stop. Vote fraud, well I said earlier, it just rankles me. I want my one vote. And I want my vote to count. And it’s not right to cheat.
I said in an earlier podcast that I have never seen or heard of Republicans cheating. I attended many Republican National Committee meetings and trainings. And every time it was emphasized that cheating would not be tolerated by the Republican Party. I don’t know if that is said on the Democrat side. I hope it is, but I do know lots of hanky panky and I don’t like it.
We do have principles. This is a podcast for people who believe in limited government, who believe in honesty, who believe in justice. We don’t cheat. We don’t follow the Rules for Radicals book. The end does not justify the means. So don’t you dare think about cheating.
But think about how to protect yourself from cheating. I talked about in podcast #48, Election Judges and Poll Watchers, how important it is that we do have election judges in every poll. So as part of your campaign, work with the local GOP organization. Or if it is nonpartisan, they are still supplying judges for nonpartisan races.
Try to recruit judges. Judges are paid. Make sure people are there and they understand their job and that they can provide some balance in a line of defense to help protect your vote.
The bottom line on ballot integrity and protecting the vote is you’ve got to stop it before it happens. Once the vote is counted, most courts rule that there is no way to know what votes were counted and which ones should be withdrawn. They can’t rule anything at that point.
They can slap penalties on somebody if they can figure out who did the cheating, but they can’t take the votes back out of the box. So the bottom line is you need to think about your weak spots and where something might be happening. Have someone there to be watching to protect it.
Something else that happens on election days is you’ll get complaints of people standing too close to the polls, electioneering, passing out literature right by the door, or the candidates standing too near the polls. Or they put signs up in polls or too close to the polls.
Fine, you push back in all of that. You call Board of Elections. You complain. You send people over there to go to talk to the judge in the poll and you get them to stop that. And it is usually taken care of. You’ve got to have somebody that can handle that for you that you can send out – a volunteer or someone with some assertiveness. And you’ll take care of that as it happens. But that’s not your bigger issue.
So let’s talk about nonpartisan. A nonpartisan situation really is about people with vested interests and money and how they can cheat.
So here’s a big horror story for you. Here in the Chicago area, in Cook County, and I believe the Chicago Board of Elections, the electronic voting machines are manufactured by a company called Sequoia out of Canada. They happen to office in the same building as Tides, which is a George Soro’s backed organization. And the company is owned by cousins of Cesar Chavez. Yeah, I know, you couldn’t write a better story. Well, it’s an unbelievable story.
The problem is you are allowed to test the equipment. The judges can test it. It’s supposed to be tested by the Board of Elections. But you are not allowed to see the software because that’s considered owned by Sequoia and propriety. So there is no way to know if there is something in the software that then throws a few extra votes in for a Democrat here and there or something like that.
You know, let’s think about Volkswagen and how it programmed it’s computers to put different readings out when it was being tested for emissions. Who is to say that there’s not something in those Sequoia machines that throw the vote more heavily to a Democrat. We don’t know. And it is illegal for Republicans to go into the systems and take them apart because the machines are considered proprietary.
I don’t know if something is going on or not. I don’t know where your machines are made. You might inquire. If there is an activist out there who would like to do some research on some of this, it would be interesting. But it’s a problem.
I guess I am a little conspiracy theory oriented, but it’s just weird that Sequoia owned by Chavez’s relatives, coming out of a building where Tides, the head George Soros organization is housed. And there is one more thing. Why aren’t American voting machines made in America?
Let’s talk a little bit about provisional ballots. The concept of provisional ballots is someone comes in to vote, says, “I am registered here. I should be able to vote,” but you can’t find their records. But they say, “I am. You’ve got to believe me.” So the judge them provides a provisional ballot, which is not a bad thing.
A provisional ballot is not counted right away. It is only counted later after the Board of Elections has an opportunity to research it and see if the person really is registered and really does live in the district.
And in a close race, it would have some meaning. If it’s not a close race, they don’t bother with the provisional ballots because there’s no point; there’s not enough provisional ballots to win. And I think I am comfortable with that. But be mindful that that’s a possibility as well.
When we get into recounts and close votes, provisional ballots will come up again. But you should be aware that might be happening in a polling place and what they are and why they exist.
The bottom line is vote fraud does exist. They usually can’t steal more than one or two percent of the vote. But they’ve done it. They believe that Kennedy won the election here in Illinois because they saw he was losing and managed to find two percent here to win it for him.
So if you are in a close, highly contested race where money and jobs are on the line, you better be ready for vote fraud. Think about how to get judges and poll watchers. Recruit people. Pay people if you have to if you can raise the money. But get them there. And be prepared.
Something else that goes on again in urban areas primarily, but maybe in rural areas; I am just not aware of it. And that’s paying people to vote, what they call walking around money.
There are many campaigns that take a lot of cash and they’ll go pay somebody five dollars to show up to vote. Or they will buy them dinner and give them something. “You go vote. Come back with your I Voted tag and we will give you a coupon for something.” That happens in a lot of neighborhoods.
There is nothing you can do about that really. If you find out about it, you report it. It’s illegal. You try to find witnesses and people who will confess to it and who did it. And scream bloody murder and try and get it prosecuted. But again, that’s difficult to do. And it is a shame that people have to be paid to show up to vote when it is their rights and it is their country and it is their community.
Well, I hope you’ve found some thoughts on vote fraud interesting. I hope you are incensed by it and you will speak up about it and push back about it.
And whenever you see the Democrats pushing some kind of helping the vote program, know it is a helping the Democrats cheat program. It usually leans that way. I mean there are usually a few good things in there, but usually it is about them getting away with fraud.
We need to talk about ID. It makes no sense to me why people can vote with no ID. You need ID for most everything in this country, but not for voting. And if you don’t have an ID, there’s got to be a way to fix this. You can go get a state ID, etc.
It is ridiculous that the Democrats want a situation where there is no ID and it is just matching a signature because signatures can be forged. But a ID with a picture will cut down on a lot of fraud.
So please push back when Democrats are trying to do something along those lines. It’s garbage. Okay, so I am incensed about vote fraud. I hope you are a little bit. And I hope you will think about it in your campaign. And I hope you are in areas where it really doesn’t matter. But you need to be aware and you need to be prepared.
Thanks for listening!