AUSTIN (KXAN) — On Tuesday, the New York Times revealed the findings of its nationwide calls to election officials in every state — with none reporting suspicion or evidence of illegal voting.
The NYT reported that every state responded to its questions either directly or through comments from state officials, with all 50 indicating there were no major issues in their election processes.
The newspaper’s investigation comes after a week of false claims of voter fraud from Pres. Donald Trump, Republican lawmakers and supporters of Trump.
However, officials said their elections were overwhelmingly successful, especially given the record turnout.
Ohio Secretary of State Republican Frank Rose told NYT, “There’s a great human capacity for inventing things that aren’t true about elections. The conspiracy theories and rumors and all those things run rampant. For some reason, elections breed that type of mythology.”
Meanwhile in Kansas: “Kansas did not experience any widespread, systematic issues with voter fraud, intimidation, irregularities or voting problems,” Sec. of the State Republican Scott Schwab said. “We are very pleased with how the election has gone up to this point.”
Some states reported tiny problems that are common with all elections, including a few instances of double voting, technical glitches and small mathematical errors. All states are reviewing their elections before certifying, NYT reported.
One focus of the uncorroborated conservative claims of voter fraud is the state of Pennsylvania, which handed President-elect Joe Biden the presidency on Saturday after he became the projected winner of its electoral votes.
A claim by a Pennsylvania postal worker Richard Hopkins that the postmaster in Erie had instructed workers to backdate ballots served as the effort’s main talking points. Hopkins, however, told investigators on Monday that he fabricated the claim. While he later denied recanting on a YouTube video, officials report he signed an affidavit doing so.
Rob Weisenbach called Hopkins’ previous claim, “100% false” and made by an employee who was “recently disciplined multiple times.”
Weisenbach also said, categorically, “The Erie Post Office did not back date any ballots.”
Despite the increasingly unsubstantiated rumors, voter fraud in the U.S. is extremely rare.
A report from the the Brenna Center, a nonpartisan pubic policy organization, found only 31 instances of impersonation fraud out of 1 billion ballots cast from 2000 to 2014.
Data on mail-in voting echoes these findings.
In 2016, only about 8,200 mail-in ballots — or 0.00006% — out of more than 135.5 million ballots were rejected because the voter appeared to have also voted in-person.
In the meantime, a move by Trump’s legal team to make headway in their fight continues to be stalled altogether. Last week, a Trump campaign request to stop counting in Michigan based on complaints was dismissed as “vague” and hearsay,” NYT reported. Several other dismissals have also come in the past few days.
Whether any of the unsubstantiated claims ever becomes verified, it’s unlikely that the outcome of the election would be tipped in Trump’s favor based on Biden’s margins of victory.
As of Wednesday, President-elect Biden has 279 Electoral votes to Pres. Donald Trump’s 217, CNN reported. Biden also holds 50.8% of the popular vote with 77.3 million votes compared to Trump’s 72.2 million.
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