The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

07 January 2005

Headline Of the Day!

"Voting by Dead People Isn't Always a Scam" -- Seattle Times

This piece is obviously specifically designed to refute Republican allegations, backed by solid evidence, that dead people somehow emerged from their graves to vote in November's fraud-ridden election. It seems to make excuses in cases where, if there isn't a direct violation of the law, certainly there are ethics concerns:

Secretary of State Sam Reed said he would "prosecute to the hilt" any valid case of fraudulent votes cast by the dead. But he said he was relieved that there appeared to be few such cases and said the enormity of this year's voter registration and turnout may explain some of the clerical mistakes.

At the request of The Seattle Times, King County elections manager Bill Huennekens opened poll books and voting records to reporters, examining 22 instances where the dead were credited with voting.

Chris Vance, state Republican chairman, said the party has researched votes credited to dead people and believes fraud is a serious problem. "People pass away, then other people vote their ballot," he said. "There's not hundreds [of ballots], but it happens, and in a close election it matters."

Removing names

The slow and cumbersome process of removing the deceased from voter rolls opens a window for mistakes.

Florence Kinnune, whose 71-year-old husband, Charles, died in September, said she wrote the word "deceased" on his absentee ballot envelope and returned it to the county. He was credited with voting.

One problem I have with the story is that it makes a general conclusion, that there are real reasons for dead "voters", on the basis of a very incomplete examination of instances. It leaves the reader with the impression that there were only a handful of prosecutable cases of such voting, when that isn't the complete picture.

It also cuts the counties too much slack by making the case that removing dead voters from the rolls is too difficult. In the computer age I find that hard to believe.

Expect more examples to come in the next several days of the elitist liberal Seattle media working overtime to shoot down the GOP's arguments one by one. Expect these stories to be on page one for maximum impact. This will be another test of the GOP's resolve in this matter.


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