American voters should think twice before they vote twice because voter fraud is real and the consequences are hefty. Voting twice is punishable by one to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $100,000, according to Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.
Georgia Democrats have pushed vote-by-mail under the guise of curtailing voter suppression due to coronavirus restrictions. However, in Georgia’s June primary, 1,000 Georgia voters doubled-down, literally, when they mailed in their votes and showed up at the polls to vote in person, as well.
Double-voting is a felony in Georgia and Secretary of State Raffensperger vows to prosecute those offenders.
“A double-voter knows exactly what they’re doing, diluting the votes of each and every voter that follows the law,” Raffensperger said during a press conference, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “Those that make the choice to game the system are breaking the law. And as secretary of state, I will not tolerate it.”
But, not everyone sees double-voting in this way.
“They only did what they thought was right to make sure their vote was counted,” said Aklima Khondoker, the Georgia director for All Voting Is Local, an organization that advocates for more absentee ballot drop boxes and recruiting poll workers. “Voters are not criminal.”
County election officials stopped people from voting twice when election records showed absentee ballots had already been received. In many instances, the system broke down and absentee ballots received fell through the cracks and were not recorded, enabling some voters to vote twice.
About 150,000 people who requested absentee ballots showed up at polling places on election day because they never received their absentee ballots in the mail or decided to instead vote in person.
Those voters’ absentee ballots were supposed to be canceled, but that didn’t always happen, according to Raffensberger. About 1,000 voters in 100 counties both returned absentee ballots and were then allowed to vote in person. The number of double-votes amounts to about 0.09% of the 1.15 million absentee ballots cast in the primary, he stated.
At least one Long County voter has admitted he intentionally voted twice to show it could be done. During a voter fraud investigation, voter Hamilton Evans said that he had wanted to test the system, according to Fox5 News.
“It’s not set up right,” Evans said. “If I did it, how many other people did it?”
Voting records show that Evans voted once during the early voting period and then a second time when he took his wife to vote on election day. While waiting for his wife at the voting precinct, he says that a volunteer asked for his identification and then gave him a ballot.
Evans voted again and immediately left to tell the sheriff why he voted twice.
Democratic Party of Georgia Executive Director Scott Hogan said “It is clear that rather than do his job of promoting the safety and security of our voting process, the secretary of state is instead pushing the GOP’s voting conspiracy theories and disinformation.”
Election officials are being retrained on procedures for accepting and canceling absentee ballots, and some counties have taken steps to ensure poll workers can get through on Election Day.