Preventing Voter Fraud in Rural America

Posted By on November 4, 2014

UPDATE: I received the following statement from the Rusk County Republicans on this matter:

Thank you for contacting me regarding this, Jerri. I forwarded your concern on to a special hotline set up to report voter fraud. It is on file in case more becomes of the issue. I am glad to hear you did get in touch with GAB finally. Voter fraud is absolutely real and I just heard of a case of it in this election where people were bussed in from out of state to vote…thankfully it was caught. If you hear anything else from GAB on your encounter with this situation, let me know. I wish more people were as vigilante as you about suspicions of fraud at the ballot box. Who among us would want to be the one to have their vote negated by a fraudulent one? Thank you again, Jerri.

Your right to vote is your opportunity to protect over hrere the freedoms for which Americans fight over there.

Image Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

I have always understood what the privilege of voting means. At the age of 18, while living in what was then West Germany, I requested an absentee ballot so I could vote in my first election. I voted for the independent candidate, John Anderson. By the next election, I was a Reagan Republican. And later, a Clinton Democrat. I value the right to vote as highly as I value my American heritage. That’s why what I witnessed at my voting place in Rib Lake, Wisconsin, disturbed me so deeply.

My husband and I were waiting in line to vote. In front of us was a gentleman who was not registered. In WI, you have to have proof of residency, which can be a bank statement or utility bill up to three-months old. I didn’t see it, but apparently he had something, because he announced that he had an out-of-state driver’s license as proof of identification. The poll worker told him it wasn’t sufficient to prove identification, and he had to fill out a form with his social security number. After he did it, he asked if could make copies of a blank form. She said yes, and offered to make him a few. He declined, saying “No thanks. I need 21 of them. I’ll make them myself.” Yeah, because being so new to the state that you don’t even have a current driver’s license, you are for sure going to have 21 friends who are just dying to vote in Rib Lake, population 800. On his way out, the gentleman grabbed a handful of sample ballots that were laying on a chair.

So here in Wisconsin, someone could simply fill out the form with a fake social security number and sign it. Then, bring that form along with a fake utility bill or rental receipt and voila, just add water and vote. Clearly, this is not in the spirit of our republic envisioned by the Founders. There can be no value in voting if the specter of fraud hangs thick over the results. Simply put, a sensible voter ID law would eliminate the temptation of over zealous politicos to cheat by encouraging fraudulent voting. Yes, elections in the information age are highly emotionally charged, and seemingly devoid of any real reasoned discussion at all. But that’s precisely the reason voter ID laws are needed— to tamp down the emotional energy.

The ACLU insists that voter ID laws diminishes the right to vote because they suppress minorities. But the reverse is true. Voter ID laws ensure that the votes of all Americans who are eligible to vote actually count, including the votes of minorities.

I reported the incident to the Wisconsin Accountability Board. I spoke with someone named Ross who assured me he would talk to the County Clerk and the poll supervisors. Somehow, I don’t feel all that confident that anything will come of it, but I’m doing what I’ve been asked to do before: If you see something, say something. I encourage everyone who values the right to vote to do the same.

About the author

Jerri L. Cook is a recognized leader in rural media. She holds a B.S. in Organizational Communications and a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Concord Law School. Exceptional legal research and writing is essential to providing effective counsel. With her proven record of excellence, Jerri L. Cook provides effective trial support for attorneys who find themselves with only a 24-hour day. Her background in communications, including content creation and internet programming, complement her academic focus on Cyber Law. E-Discovery can be daunting, but with Jerri L. Cook on the team, digital information is readily discovered and retrieved. Contact her at 715.257.4363.


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