How incredibly irresponsible can an elected official be? Montana Secretary of State Linda McCulloch recently distributed an editorial saying, “Crying wolf about the security of Montana’s elections is an intentional and deliberate attempt to decrease voter turnout by gaining support for laws that will restrict your right to vote.”
The official Montana Secretary of State website lists McCulloch’s number one priority: “interpreting state election laws and overseeing elections.” Her job is to identify weaknesses in our voting system and take measures to prevent election fraud. She should be proudly and aggressively investigating complaints, auditing processes, and training personnel to protect the integrity of our votes.
Instead, she denies any responsibility. “The results are overwhelmingly clear. Voter fraud – votes knowingly cast by ineligible individuals – does not exist in Montana,” McCulloch wrote.
I think back to my first college job, busting my butt in Nelson’s tire shop in Great Falls on a cold November day, looking out at the long line of muddy, sloppy cars waiting for snow tire installation. I sure wish I could have said “It is overwhelmingly clear! There is no snow in Montana, so the need for snow tires does not exist!”
I would have been fired, and so should McCulloch. There IS snow in Montana, and there IS election fraud.
Last weekend a group of Tea Party leaders from around the state met in Helena for a planning session, and one of the hot topics was the escalating incidence of election fraud. One described how, in his small precinct, over 200 absentee ballots were mailed to out of state addresses! Since the returned ballots were hidden from poll watchers by officials, no one knows how many were accepted as valid by the county election officials.
Another related how a poll watcher friend saw and pointed out to the official that twelve consecutive ballots were signed by the same person with the same pen. The official blushed, and said “I’ll take care of this,” and removed the ballots to a back room, where nobody could see what ultimately happened to them.
A study of the 2008 Montana election results points out serious flaws in the Missoula County vote tabulator machine processes and the Montana Votes database.
While the absentee ballot is a great convenience, it is also an opportunity for easy election fraud. And McColloch’s equating the requirement for photo ID at the polls with “voter repression” is just asinine and disingenuous. There can be no other reason for denying this reasonable test of voter integrity than the accommodation of fraud.
This is not a partisan issue. Voters of all parties and persuasions should demand election integrity from their secretary of state. Linda McCulloch is not interested in fulfilling that number-one priority. If she doesn’t believe there is election fraud in Montana, she is fooling herself – and the voters.
Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side
Enjoy one of the all-time great live concert bands – Styx
You’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re kidding yourself if you don’t believe it