James O'Keefe, in "disguise" (@Steffikeith/twitpic)

James O'Keefe, conservative "film-maker," has another hobby-horse: voter fraud. You never saw that one coming, right? Anyway, in an attempt to prove that voter fraud could exist, O'Keefe had some lackeys actually commit fraud, and face potential criminal charges. They got ballots under the names of dead people to try to prove voter ID laws were necessary.
Federal law bans not only the casting of but the “procurement” of ballots “that are known by the person to be materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent under the laws of the State in which the election is held.”

Hamline University law professor David Schlutz told TPM that there’s “no doubt” that O’Keefe’s accomplices violated the law.

“In either case, if they were intentionally going in and trying to fraudulently obtain a ballot, they violated the law,” Schlutz said. “So right off the bat, what they did violated the law.”

Election law expert Rick Hasen joked in an email to TPM that O’Keefe’s team should “next show how easy it is to rob a bank with a plastic gun.”

“Who in their right mind would risk a felony conviction for this?  And who would be able to do this in large enough numbers to (1) affect the outcome of the election and (2) remain undetected?” Hasen wrote.

Who would risk a felony conviction? Who besides O'Keefe, who's certainly proven that he could give a rat's ass about actual law. But the better question is the second one: How could this be done in large enough numbers, undetected, to actually work? And since that scenario is highly unlikely, who'd be dumb enough to try it? Besides O'Keefe. As evidence of how unlikely this would be to work on any kind of scale, one of the fake voters was caught out by an election worker. The poll watcher knew the dead man he was posing as, and challenged him. He got away before the police could be called in.

So really all that O'Keefe proved last night is that the only coordinated voter fraud happening is conducted by conservative dickwads trying to prove that voter fraud exists.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Jan 11, 2012 at 01:02 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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