Absentee Ballot fraud is a well-known scheme for cheating on elections. In North Carolina, in 2018 a Republican campaign participated in that kind of fraud for then-candidate Mark Harris.
Harris’ own son warned him of the illegal absentee scheme, but candidate Harris blew through the warning and hired the man behind the scheme anyway, and ultimately cost the state have to re-run the entire race.
And everyone now knows that Absentee ballot harvesting schemes are wrong, costly, and illegal.
The Hill reported:
A campaign operative at the center of the 2018 North Carolina ballot fraud scandal pleaded guilty on Monday to illegally accepting Social Security benefits while concealing other money that he had earned, The Associated Press reported.
Leslie McCrae Dowless Jr. pleaded guilty to theft of government property and Social Security fraud and faces up to 15 years in prison. His sentencing hearing has been set for Aug. 23.
Dowless was indicted last year after evidence revealed that he had received around $135,000 in 2017 and 2018 for his work on both state and federal campaigns, the AP reported. At the same time, he applied for Social Security benefits in 2018 and claimed to have not been working for the past few years.
Dowless worked on the 2018 congressional campaign for Republican candidate Mark Harris. Harris initially led his Democratic opponent Dan McCready by several hundred votes before it was revealed that Dowless had collected and filled out hundreds of absentee ballots in a rural North Carolina county.
In February 2019, Dowless was arrested and charged with multiple counts of obstruction of justice, conspiracy to commit obstruction of justice and possession of absentee ballots.
Harris has claimed not to have been aware that Dowless’s ballot fraud scheme was illegal. John Harris, Mark Harris’s son, later testified that he had informed his father that he believed Dowless’s actions were illegal, though the elder Harris went on to hire Dowless anyway.
After the scandal broke, the North Carolina State Board of Elections voted unanimously to call for a new election, which Harris did not run in, even though he himself had requested the redo after months of initially calling for the election board to certify him as the winner.
Republican Rep. Dan Bishop (N.C.) went on to win the new election.
SINCE WE ARE ON THE TOPIC OF RERUNNING AN ELECTION
Flashback to an interesting article in the Irish Times:
US president Donald Trump raised the prospect of November’s presidential election being run a second time if universal postal voting is adopted.
“Universal [mail-in voting] is going to be a disaster, the likes of which our country has never seen,” he said. “It will end up being a rigged election or they will never come out with an outcome. They’ll have to do it again, and nobody wants that, and I don’t want that.”
He again hit out at plans by some states to send postal ballots to registered voters in advance of the election.
“You have to get voting right. You can’t have millions and millions of ballots end all over the place,” he said. “I just want to get it right . . . Win, lose or draw, you have to get it right.”
Controversy around the issue of postal voting has intensified in recent weeks, amid a funding row over the United States Postal Service, and warnings that the mail system may not be able to cope with the increase in mail-in votes and ballot allocations expected because of Covid-19.
Former first lady Michelle Obama urged American citizens to exercise their right to vote in November during her address to the Democratic National Convention on Monday night.
Wearing a gold necklace which spelled the word “vote”, she said: “We’ve got to vote early, in person if we can. We’ve got to request our mail-in ballots right now, tonight, and send them back immediately and follow up to make sure they’re received. And then, make sure our friends and families do the same,” she said, adding that people must “be willing to stand in line all night if we have to”.
Kari is an ex-Community Organizer who writes about Cultural Marxism, grassroots activism, music, IndyCar racing and political campaigns. @Saorsa1776