Report: Michigan rejects nearly 900 mail-in ballots – because they came from dead voters

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LANSING, MI – Nah, nothing to worry about with mail-in voting, right?

For months, Democrat leaders have been making the push toward voting by mail and ballot harvesting. 

LET has reported several times in the last couple months on problems with it all throughout the country which certainly shows that both mail in voting and ballot harvesting are ripe with potential fraud and issues. 

In a recent report out of Michigan, there seem to be at least more concerns regarding voting by mail.

Recently, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s office released information regarding the rejection of several thousand absentee ballots.  Out of the 10,600 absentee ballots that were rejected on August 4th, 6,400 were refused because they had arrived after election day.

2,225 ballots were also not counted because there were no signatures present on the envelope.  Another 1,111 were discounted because the voter had moved after their vote was cast.  And, amazingly, 846 were refused because the voter was deceased.

Benson’s office claims the 846 deceased voters had died after their vote was cast.  They were able to stop the votes from coming through because they get monthly updates from the Social Security Administration.  Thus, stating that there was no mail fraud on the deceased votes and their system worked.

The Detroit News reports that the number of mail in votes by deceased people has decreased, so far, from the November 2016 election.  According to them, 1,782 votes were received by election officials from people who had died after their vote had been cast.

Problems with the design and timelines of mail in voting in the state of Michigan is not new. 

United States Postal Service General Counsel Thomas Marshall informed Benson previously that the delivery timelines provided posed a “significant risk” to ballots being sent to close to election day.  As noted previously, votes that are received after election day are null and void.

In a letter to Benson, Marshall said:

“This mismatch [in delivery schedule] creates a risk that ballots requested near the deadline under state law will not be returned by mail in time to be counted under your laws as we understand them.” 

Marshall advised that the postal service already prioritizes sending of ballots through the mail.  However, even with that priority in place, he calls on voters to mail their ballots in at least 15 days ahead of election day to ensure the ballot makes it in time.   

Currently, Michigan election law allows voters to apply for a mail in ballot up to election day, leaving no time for the vote to make its way back to the election office.  It also allows for ballots to be mailed to voters up to 4 days before the election.  A time frame that Marshall advised is impossible to ensure. 

In his letter, Marshall said:

“If a requested ballot is transmitted to the voter by mail at or near that 4-day deadline, there is a significant risk that the ballot will not reach the voter before Election Day, and accordingly that the voter will not be able to use the ballot to cast his or her vote.” 

Benson’s office said the release of this information in hope that state leaders will work to pass legislation to help speed up the process and give her office the ability to notify voters for issues when the voter has not signed the ballot.

Benson said:

“The data demonstrates that thousands of people who cast otherwise valid votes were not able to participate in last week’s election solely because the Legislature failed to act ahead of the primary.

With turnout and absentee ballot numbers expected to double or even triple in November, we could be looking at tens of thousands of Michigan citizens disenfranchised if the legislature again fails to act.”   

Currently, 2.4 million Michigan voters have signed up to conduct absentee ballots in the upcoming presidential election.  Benson advised that her office will be sending mailers out to the remaining 4.4 million registered voters to encourage them to participate with this voting method.

In a state that was narrowly won by President Trump in 2016, every vote counts.

Supreme Court just made it easier for Rhode Island to pull off mail-in voting scheme

Rhode Island – A state requirement for mail-in voting in Rhode Island, that has been on the books for over four decades, is being flouted by way of invoking the pandemic.

This requirement specifically obliged having two witness signatures present, or a notary sign-off on a mail-in ballot before a voter sends it out in the mail.

But since people shouldn’t be congregating, the requirement is being ignored this election season.

Rhode Island state officials suspended the need to have two witness signatures or notary sign-offs for mail-in ballots, which the Supreme Court allowed to continue unabridged on August 13th.

The Republican National Committee and the Republican Party of Rhode Island sought the interjection from the high court, but the effort didn’t reach the conclusion those parties wanted.

The court noted that “no state official has expressed opposition,” against placing the witness signature requirement on hold for mail-in ballots in Rhode Island this year, which seems to have heavily influenced the decision in this matter.

This suspension of the 1978 requirement was first used in Rhode Island for the state’s primaries on June 2nd, a move enacted by Democratic Governor Gina Raimondo while pandemic concerns were in peak season.

Roughly a month after the June primaries, the ACLU decided to bring a lawsuit against Rhode Island, saying that because of health concerns, this witness requirement for mail-in voting should be halted for both the September 8th primaries and the general elections in November.

This brought more fodder to the Supreme Court’s decision in not forcing Rhode Island to enforce the requirement, since it has previously transpired in June, and those tasked with enforcing the requirement aren’t against placing it on hold:

“[In] similar cases where a State defends its own law, here the state election officials support the challenged decree, and no state official has expressed opposition…The status quo is one in which the challenged requirement has not been in effect, given the rules used in Rhode Island’s last election, and many Rhode Island voters may well hold that belief.”

While members of the ACLU were thrilled with the court’s decision, members of the Rhode Island Republican Party were disappointed in how the court responded.

RIRP Chair Sue Cienki stated the following about the matter:

“We fear that this decision will create more, not less confusion.”

This confusion is in reference to the recent NAACP lawsuit in Alabama where the Supreme Court upheld the state’s right to enforce witness signatures on absentee ballots earlier in July.

However, the difference being that in these two cases, the state of Alabama was fighting to uphold election fraud safeguards, whereas the state of Rhode Island was the one to suspend the requirement.

As for Rhode Island, September’s primary includes both houses of the General Assembly, two seats in congress, and one seat within the Senate. For the September primary, the final day to request a mail-in ballot is on August 18th. Regarding the November election, the final day to request a mail-in ballot is on October 13th.

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Recently, the mail-in voting process has come under fire as more and more evidence of mishaps keep arising.

According to The Center for Voter Information, more than half-million inaccurate applications for absentee ballots were sent by mistake to people all across Virginia. Some of the ballots were sent to dead people, the wrong relative and/or residence, and comically, to pets.

This calamity was flagged by several people receiving the improper ballots such as election monitors, members of the League of Women Voters and a retired FBI agent.

The Center for Voter Information said the absentee application mailings were sent to “eligible voters” in the state and “some of the mailers may have directed the return envelopes” for the absentee applications to the wrong election offices.

The counties that were effected included Fairfax City, Fairfax County, Franklin City, Franklin County, Richmond City, Richmond County, Roanoke City and Roanoke County. 

The Center for Voter Information said in a statement:

“Approximately half a million applications sent to eligible voters in Virginia included incorrect information, and we are working diligently to address the issues. Mistakes in our programming are very rare, but we take them seriously, and our methods overall are extraordinarily effective,” 

The statement continued:

“We know that voters are on high alert as the November election approaches, and we regret adding to any confusion. Please rest assured that we are working with local election officials in Virginia to re-direct the vote-by-mail applications to the proper locations, and will rectify any errors at our own expense,” 

The Center uses the Smith-Edwards-Dunlap Company for their ballot printing. President and CEO, Jonathan Shapiro, responded to the mistake, saying:

“occurred because we incorrectly aligned a spreadsheet that matched the voter with their local election office.”

He went on to say the mistake:

“created confusion for voters who are trying to exercise their right to vote from home, safely and conveniently.”

The Center for Voter Information, and similar groups rely on information in the state’s official voter registration database.

According to Just the News, they asked the Virginia Department of Elections if it is working on updating the voter registration database so third party groups do not send absentee ballot applications to the wrong addresses or to deceased people.

The department spokesperson said:

“The Virginia Department of Elections does not coordinate with third parties on campaign efforts. You will have to contact the third party group directly regarding their data source,”

They continued:

“Regarding our records management, the Department engages in ongoing and extensive annual and monthly list file maintenance processes.”

The centers website makes a statement about the mailings, encouraging people to submit their ballot requests directly on the website. 

The statement reads:

“The Virginia Department of Elections has no affiliation with this group nor coordinates with any third party groups on campaign efforts. We are aware that voters in multiple localities that received an absentee ballot application were given pre-paid return envelopes addressed to the incorrect registrar’s office,” 

It continues:

“The Virginia Department of Elections encourages all voters that would like to receive an absentee ballot for the November election to apply electronically on our website www.elections.virginia.gov/voterinformation.

Any applications that arrive in the wrong locality’s office will be forwarded immediately to the correct office for processing. If you have already applied for an absentee ballot, you do not need to submit a new application.

The first day that absentee ballots will be mailed is September 18, 2020,” 

Senior legal advisor for the Trump campaign, Jenna Ellis, commented on the absentee ballot application problems that occurred in Virginia, and compared it to what could happen in Nevada.

She said:

“Imagine if these applications were live ballots mailed out”

She continued:

“That’s what’s going to happen in Nevada under their recently passed AB4, and what Democrats are pushing for nationally.

What will stop a ‘printing flub’ for actual ballots under a universal vote-by-mail system? President Trump warned about these dangers months ago.

The Democrats’ plan to intentionally undermine election security will cause incalculable chaos unless we have securities that our campaign lawsuits are insisting on to protect all voters.”

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