Roy Moore

Roy Moore's Trumpian Conspiracy Theorizing About Voter Fraud

The president wants the Alabama loser to concede. But using Trump's own (fake) voter-fraud math, he shouldn't.

|

Moore Moore Moore ||| Roy Moore
Roy Moore

Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders lamented that the concession speech from losing Alabama Republican senate candidate Roy Moore "should have already taken place." This morning, President Donald Trump said that "I think he should" concede. This makes obvious sense, in light of the 1.44-percentage-point lead that Democrat Doug Jones has in the unofficial results, well over the 0.5-point difference that triggers a recount according to Alabama law. Ever since Tuesday night, Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill—a Moore supporter—has emphasized that it's "highly unlikely" the ballots will be counted again.

But Moore's "the battle rages on" intransigence makes all the sense in the world when judged by the example set by Trump himself.

Trump, you'll recall, made the baseless charge three weeks after the 2016 presidential election that "millions of people voted…illegally." In January, he narrowed that figure down to between three million and five million illegal votes. If true—and it isn't—that would mean that between 2.2 percent and 3.7 percent of all votes cast were fraudulent (and monolithically in favor of the Democrat).

What happens if you run those same numbers on the Alabama Senate race? Why, Roy Moore has a case! The margin between the top two finishers was 20,715 votes; an illegal voting rate of 2.2 to 3.7 percent would amount to between 29,615 and 49,807 fraudulent ballots cast. Stand tall, Roy!

Sadly, Trump's flippant conspiracy theorizing about polling integrity has more than just a cultural influence on the right. The president has made it the basis for his Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, a garbage fire of an advisory board whose vice chair, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, is the leading voter-fraud fabulist in the country. Kobach, who is currently running for governor with the support of the president's son, has had ample opportunity to act upon his startling contention that "the illegal registration of alien voters has become pervasive" in his state. And yet, according to Mother Jones,

in 2015 he became the only secretary of state in the country with the power to personally prosecute voter fraud cases. Since then, Kobach's office has convicted just nine people for illegal voting, out of 1.8 million registered voters in the state. Only one of them was a non-citizen. The other eight were citizens who voted in two different states, and most of them were over 60 years old, owned property in both places, and were confused about voting requirements.

Among Kobach's bad ideas for the country is a massive federal database of voters (what could go wrong?). The commission is being riddled by lawsuits, including, remarkably, by one of its own members, Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap (read Dunlap's Washington Post explainer for a snapshot of Trumpian amateurishness).

So yes, Roy Moore and his supporters are making fools of themselves spreading hoaxes and indulging in dark fantasies about voter fraud. But such pathologies have a seat in the same White House urging him to concede, and still threaten to convert conspiracy theory into federal election law.

Advertisement

NEXT: H.S. Athlete Likely Has Right to Kneel During National Anthem

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Why is it that neither party can accept losing an election and simultaneously have zero self-awareness about it?

    1. Because politics is the MOST IMPORTANT TH*NG EVAH!, and team feels like it matters far more than principles or logical consistency or whatever.

    2. At least Moore supporters aren’t rioting.

      1. Their prayers will call forth an army of angels…

        …who will riot for them!

    3. Losing big and losing by a margin of 1.4% are too totally different things.

      There is a public interest in making sure elections are fair and all votes counted as well as making sure politicians that are duly elected are seated within a reasonable period.

      1. Who are you talking about regarding losing big?

        Moore’s complaints are about him being a sore loser, not electoral integrity. The election was close, but not to the degree that a recount would swing it. And I have a feeling you’d recognize that if Jones was doing this whining after a Moore win by 1.4%.

  2. I remember when it was hilarious that Trump suggested that the Obama administration spied on his campaign.

    1. Trump being right on one thing doesn’t mean he is right on everything, this can be said of course about every single person in the history. Newton being right on the laws of motion didn’t make him right on alchemy.

  3. I hope he posed for that statue of a man riding a horse.

  4. ” If true?and it isn’t”

    It probably isn’t. But I read this article, and the several others you linked to and my conclusion is a lot of speculating and not enough actual measurements.

  5. So…Moore is a dumbass but are you saying voter fraud is a myth? How do you know election fraud is not real if there is no reliable verification process when voting?

    1. How do you know voter fraud is a problem without evidence of great numbers of people voting fraudulently?

      1. Well there is evidence of voter fraud. Ergo, it is not a ‘myth’. Now your quibbling saying that there is no evidence of ‘great numbers of people voting fraudulently’. What is your definition of ‘great numbers’?

        1. Enough to affect the outcome of an election would be ideal. Enough to even count with a two-figure statistic would suffice.

          1. How about Franken’s first election when he won by less than three hundred votes after a recount, when he was initially losing before absentee ballots suddenly appeared? That is a pretty well documented incident of voter fraud

            I can’t link the damn stories from USA Today and the Washington Examiner, because this comment section doesn’t let you do it anymore.

            1. It doesn’t happen on the levels that Trump or Moore are suggesting, but it most certainly is not a myth.

            2. I assume you mean this Washington Examiner story where the critical claim is:

              During the controversy a conservative group called Minnesota Majority began to look into claims of voter fraud. Comparing criminal records with voting rolls, the group identified 1,099 felons — all ineligible to vote — who had voted in the Franken-Coleman race.

              Which proves that 1,099 with the same name as people with felony records voted in the election?

              Considering that three layers of MN courts and commissions certified the results, I will remain skeptical of Minnesota Majority’s claim until I can take a look at their data/methodology.

              1. So you accept the premise that voter fraud is a myth without any data to back that up, but reject data suggesting that it swung an election? Sounds like nothing would convince you, as you seem tethered to a dogmatic belief

                1. Voter fraud’s not a myth, but that article doesn’t offer rock-solid proof of it either. If “Bob Smith from Peoria” is listed as having voted, and there’s a “Bob Smith from Peoria” also listed as being a convicted felon, it doesn’t prove that Bob Smith the voter is the same as Bob Smith the felon.

                  Nevertheless I personally do favor strict requirements for proof of a voter’s identity, not necessarily because I think there’s lots of fraud, but because it just makes no sense not to.

                  1. You’re right it doesn’t offer rock solid proof, but it does raise suspicions. But those suspicions aren’t even investigated, because some people solidly hold to a dogmatic belief that voter fraud never happens. That’s just as fanciful as Trump’s accusation that it happens in the millions. There really needs to be a middle ground in this discussion, because both sides are unhinged.

              2. Those felons were lonely, willing to trade illegal votes for someone ? anyone ? grabbing their butts!

      2. How do you know voter fraud is NOT a problem without evidence?

      3. I saw a post on Twitter yesterday of a guy bragging to the reporter about a bunch of people coming from out of state and voting in Alabama for Jones.

          1. It was on the Teevees

        1. I once saw on Twitter that the Russians hacked the election for Trump.

          1. “Shut-up, that was real”

            – Insufferable MJ Green

            1. Oh, so you’re the Open Borders Liberaltarian guy.

              1. No. You’re confusing yokels. I am generally in favor of open borders. I just like mocking you. I do it with respect

          2. Was it an actual Russian on live fucking video confessing that? Cause otherwise, not really the same thing.

            (Honestly, I doubt there was much voter fraud going on, but I’ve never seen someone so giddy about winning an election and openly admitting to voter fraud.)

    2. How do I know you don’t eat babies if I have never seen you not not eating babies?

      1. Ask?
        Investigate?
        Set a baby baited trap?

        1. Before we throw you in prison for eating babies, presumably?

    3. This is why we should replace elections with trial by stone.

  6. I know it sounds kind of nihilitarian of me, but if the best America’s election system can muster is Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton or Doug Jones vs Roy Moore, than who cares if it’s fair?

    1. The 2016 election was the modern equivalent of Hitler against the most qualified candidate ever to run for President, and you don’t care enough to demand a fair outcome untainted by Russian hacking?

      1. Who was the most qualified candidate ever that Hitler ran against?

      2. modern equivalent of Hitler

        If only Hitler were more like Trump–we wouldn’t still be talking about him.

        most qualified candidate ever to run for President

        Thanks for the laugh!

      3. There’s no way this isn’t a parody account.

    2. We may hate the lizards, but we still have to vote for a lizard, or else the wrong lizard might get in.

      1. David Icke approves

        1. And Douglas Adams (RIP).

    3. If you can’t see why Hillary and Jones were superior, even with the (D)s after their names, your problem isn’t nihilism.

      1. Tony|12.15.17 @ 2:36PM|#
        “If you can’t see why Hillary and Jones were superior, even with the (D)s after their names, your problem isn’t nihilism.”

        Dishonesty from that shitbag Tony?
        Well, pretty much every post.

    4. I know it sounds kind of nihilitarian of me, but if the best America’s election system can muster is Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton or Doug Jones vs Roy Moore, than who cares if it’s fair?

      Consider the options: run for government and be stuck with those clowns…or work for Google and get a foosball table in your office.

  7. I am sure that there are a very small number of fraudulent votes cast in every election, definitely not to the extent that Trump/Moore claim, but it is there-just like how .01% of ground beef contains things we don’t want to think about. If you have recently moved to another state, its pretty easy to vote in both-another is to vote early, then request a provisional ballot on election day.

  8. But Alabama has a strict voter ID law, which I’ve been told is the cure for all voting fraud.

    1. I heard that voter ID laws just disenfranchise minorities? Unless, of course, the Democrat wins

      1. How are those contradictory? Maybe he would have won a lot more votes if there hadn’t been suppression.

        1. You are beyond parody

          1. You’re not getting basic logic here.

            1. You use logic? Whoa- if true!

      2. A lot of black people voting is not evidence against disenfranchisement.

      3. I heard that voter ID laws just disenfranchise minorities?

        Nah, it’s the poor and the stupid. The latter of which I am not sure is a minority.

    2. I’ve heard that fake IDs are the cure for not getting wasted if you’re under 21

      1. Seems like a lot of effort and expense for one fraudulent vote.

        If there is significant fraud, I figure it has to be largely poll workers and election officials behind it.

  9. Looking forward to his upcoming book: “What Happened, Ya’ll”

    1. Chapter 10: “I Blame The Horse”

  10. God wanted you to lose Roy.

    1. Good point Tony.
      *commits seppuku*

  11. Psshaw!

    The only real voter fraud is LEET RUSSIAN HAXORING!!!!1111!!!

    1. “There is no voter fraud, but Putin hacked the election”

      1. You’re struggling with things that aren’t actually contradictions. Nobody’s saying Putin showed up in Michigan and cast a fraudulent ballot.

        1. Then what exactly did Putin do? How did he ‘hack the election’?

            1. You pile of shit, did you even read the link?
              The claim is ‘someone who is pretty important is sure the Russians did something or other, kinda’
              What a fucking ignoramus.

              1. I love that he’s all ready to believe whatever “the intelligence community” says about Russian hacking the DNC servers. The same intelligence community that swore there were WMD’s in Iraq.

                1. That is one of the stupidest, most self-serving, knowingly cynical talking points to come out of Trump’s weird vagina-like little mouth, and here you are regurgitating it like you’re his retarded parrot.

                  You don’t actually believe that our intelligence services are literally wrong about literally everything. You’re just licking Trump’s nutsack for god knows what reason.

  12. Roy Moore just wants to have the Democrats to have continuing pleasure at winning the election by demonstrating how butthurt he is.

  13. Why is it that we just can’t have a rational discussion about voter ID? It is so silly.

    One tribe goes way off the deep end and posits this vast conspiracy to deprive millions of the right to vote.

    The other tribe goes way off the other side of the deep end and posits this vast conspiracy to import millions of illegal voters.

    And this is on a subject where everyone agrees on the basic premise – that properly registered citizens ought to be able to vote.

    Le sigh.

    1. Because having a rational discussion might lead to voter ID policy that doesn’t deprive millions of the right to vote.

      1. Tony, I don’t hate you like some of the others around here do, but c’mon man, this is absurd.

        If you were to design a voting system from scratch, without being held captive by the decisions of the past, then how would you implement a voter identity verification system? I seriously doubt you would simply let people claim to be whomever they liked and expect the government to take them at their word. No other identity verification system does this. Why should voting?

        1. They openly admit to their motives. I’d be OK with voter ID if government paid to ensure that everyone had one and made it as easy as possible. But that is not the point. The Republicans will say so themselves. The Georgia AG just said it, in so many words: if the blacks are too lazy to go through a bunch of hoops to get an ID, they shouldn’t vote. Why else would they close all the DMVs in black neighborhoods in addition to passing these ID laws?

    2. Alabama already has a voter ID law. What’s left to discuss?

    3. I see no problem with voter ID laws. It should be easy to setup a fair system that doesn’t disenfranchise people and makes sure that everyone voting is actually a registered voter.

      However, Republicans messed it up by attempting to implement last minute voting law changes that made it obvious that their real intent was to suppress black votes.

      Any voter ID laws should be made well in advance of the first elections that they apply to so that everyone, including party get-out-the-vote strategists, have time to plan accordingly.

  14. God knows I tried.
    Elections. For the love of God, if you don’t hear anything else I say for the rest of the evening, listen to this.
    Elections are no longer free. They are staged theater, designed to maintain the illusion of representative governance and to enrich the political class. This is despotism. If after this mess that we just went through, if you do not understand this, you are beyond hope.

    My God.

    And then you have election fraud on top of it. Here in Colorado ten counties had voter turnout in excess of the total adult population of the [county]. Not just the registered voters ? the total adult population of the county, excuse me, the county. And what did Romney do? Roll over. How can you not see this? How can you not understand? Do not talk to me anymore about elections. There are no elections. There are no more free elections. Just stand over that dead horse and beat it ? it is never going to get up. For the love of God.

    I’m sorry, but there comes a certain point where you have got to pull your head out of your a ss and deal with reality. You cannot just keep going on with this over and over and over again, saying, “Well if I just give somebody some money and I put some signs in my yard I’m doing enough?”

    No, you’re not doing enough. You’re not doing enough at all. Not even close. In fact, if you’re participating in this, you’re part of the problem.”

    http://www.barnhardt.biz/2016/…..s-i-tried/

  15. 6.9 million multiple voters in 28 states, report finds….
    “Our nation’s voter rolls are a mess,” says Catherine Engelbrecht, president of the election-watch group True The Vote.
    The latest interstate voter cross check tallied 6,951,484 overlapping voter registrations, and they’re just the tip of the iceberg.

    The cross-check program involves only 28 states and does not include the three largest: California, Texas and Florida.

    Two national voting-rights groups ? the League of Women Voters and America Votes ? did not respond to Watchdog’s requests for comment.
    http://watchdog.org/156197/mul…..rosscheck/

  16. “Trump, you’ll recall, made the baseless charge three weeks after the 2016 presidential election that “millions of people voted…illegally.” … If true?and it isn’t?that would mean that between 2.2 percent and 3.7 percent of all votes cast were fraudulent (and monolithically in favor of the Democrat).”

    OK, I must say something here. There are plenty of opportunities for voter fraud out there. If Mr. Welch wants to contact me, I will send him a photo of my TWO ballots from the last presidential election. One from California, which continues to send you absentee ballots after you have moved away, and one from the state I currently reside in. I only voted the one from my current state, but kept both because I was appauled by the easy opportunity to cheat.

    So there is one experience I’ve personally had with voter fraud. In addition, I have recieved (over the years) several packets of voter materials sent to my San Francisco address, for people I’ve never heard of, that have never lived in my house. When I’d bring those to my polling place, saying, “this person is using a fake address and does not live here” they’d look at you like you were nuts and just set it aside.

    If I ever get one of those again, I’m keeping it as evidence rather than hand it in to the fine upstanding citizens manning the Democrats polling place 😉 . I have personally witnessed more than two instances.

    The govt should have a website where you can upload photographic evidence like this…

  17. As opposed to the Clintonian Conspiracy theorizing about Russian interference, Comey interference, press interference, electorate interference?

    Taking this away from Moore, who happens to have a bit of the batshit insanity, all the “analyses” of voter fraud you cite or that Ron cites seems to be based on expert speculation as opposed to the almost non-existent real, unambigous data. Why the resistance to actually coming up with ways to measure the issue, or actually imposing some standards to ensure that we actually have one citizen, one vote? I mean, from a strictly mathematical perspective, a vote canceled out by voter fraud counts just as little as a vote that was unable to be cast by overzealous restrictions.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.