RESOLUTION TO ENSURE ELECTION INTEGRITY

by Diane Rufino, November 27, 2021

INTRO

The Constitution established the United States as a democratic republic.  It is democratic because the people govern themselves, and it is a republic because the government’s power is derived from its people. This means that our governments – federal, state, and local – are elected by the citizens.  Citizens vote for their government officials and these officials represent the concerns and ideas of the citizens in government. That is, in an ideal world, that is how it should work; it is certainly the system which our Founding Fathers envisioned for us.

Voting is one important way that we can participate in our democracy. In order to vote for President in a federal election, a citizen must be 18 or older and abide by neutral voting laws that ensure that voting is fair, honest, and transparent, and holds true to the constitutional principle of “One Person, One Vote” (which means that every single citizen has an equal say in state and local elections, as well as of our nation’s president.

Besides voting for officials, citizens also have the ability and right to vote on issues. Voters may want to make changes to their community, such as building bigger schools or adding new roads. And we may be upset, angered, or frustrated at the actions of certain government officials (again, local, state, and federal) and so we have the right and freedom to contact them.

Voting in an election and contacting our elected officials are two ways that Americans can participate in our democracy.

Sadly, and unfortunately, election fraud is real.

We know this all too well. It was shown that John F. Kennedy could not have defeated Richard Nixon in the presidential election of 1960 if it weren’t for the “systematic fraud” in key states won by Kennedy, particularly in Illinois and his running-mate’s (Lyndon B Johnson) home state of Texas. When I chose to look into the story, I expected the stories to be apocryphal with little solid evidence to back them. After an investigation and an almost-forensic look at the votes cast in Illinois, it can be said that Illinois was certainly stolen and that although the results in Texas were never properly investigated, the election results from that state were highly suspicious.

We know it again all too well with the 2020 presidential election.

Elections have consequences. We saw, in 2016 (through 2020) how the consequences could have very favorable consequences for our country and then with the so-celled election of Joe Biden in 2020 and his taking office the following January, we saw how the consequences can have dire consequences for Americans and for the safety, security, and prestige of the United States.

The Heritage Foundation’s Election Fraud Database, which has chronicled more than 1,300 cases of election fraud, proves that election fraud does occur in American elections. Errors and omissions by election officials and careless, shoddy election practices and procedures or lack of training can also cause and have caused problems for voters and candidates alike.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. States can, and should, take action to restore integrity to our elections.

WHEREAS, the John Locke Foundation and The Heritage Foundation advocate that election reform must occur in two ways:  First, States should nullify any federal act of Congress or federal court decision that infringes on the state legislators exclusive right to make rules regarding presidential elections, and second, States need real election reform, enacted by their legislatures, that must include:

An Ideal System of Voting Should Include:

(1)  A single day for voting, Election Day, which the federal government should establish as a national holiday. Should the federal government refuse to do so, the state governments should establish “Election Day” as a state holiday. This way, individuals don’t have to worry about finding time to vote with their work schedules and they also will have plenty of time to plan to get out to vote.

(2)  No early voting; no Saturday voting and no Sunday voting. (Churches are always free to use their buses and vans to help the elderly get to polling locations.

(3)  Paper ballots only. This way, there is no electronic hacking, no software manipulations, no computer irregularities, no ballot-counting manipulations, etc.

(4)  Verification of the citizenship of voters. Only lawful citizens can vote in federal elections. States should, therefore, require proof of citizenship to register to vote, as well as verify the citizenship of registered voters with the records of the Department of Homeland Security, including access to the E-Verify system.

(5)  A Strict Voter ID requirement.  (A picture ID will prove the identify of the voter as well as his or her address). A voter should be required to validate his or her identity with government-issued photo ID to vote in-person or by absentee ballot (as states such as Alabama and Kansas require). Government-issued IDs should be free for those who cannot afford one.

Voter ID is a neutral requirement that is applied universally and neutrally (See the remarks below from Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson).

(6)  The elimination of “Same-Day” voter registration.

(7)  Limitation of Absentee ballots (perhaps one of the greatest sources of election and voter fraud). Absentee ballots should be reserved for those individuals who are too disabled to vote in person, are being hospitalized, or who will be out of town on Election Day.

(8)  A requirement that absentee ballots must be notarized. 

(9)   A state requirement that ensures the accuracy of voter registration lists. Computerized statewide voter-registration lists should be designed to be interoperable so that they can communicate seamlessly with other state record databases to allow frequent exchanges and comparisons of information. [For example, when an individual changes the residence address on his or her driver’s license, that information should be sent to state election officials so that the voter-registration address of the individual is also changed to his or her new Department of Motor Vehicles residence address].  Voter registration lists should be updated and verified in a timely manner, to remove the names of those who have died, moved, or been sentenced as felons, to ensure accuracy and validity and help eliminate voter fraud.

(10)  A federal or state law prohibiting and thus preventing vote trafficking. Vote-trafficking (also called “vote harvesting”) by third parties should be banned. That would ensure that candidates, campaign staffers, party activists, and political consultants are prohibited from picking up and potentially mishandling or changing absentee ballots and pressuring or coercing vulnerable voters in their homes. In other words, a political group can’t offer to pick up ballots and then bring them to the polling place and/or mail them, with no third party supervising that group’s behavior in the interim.

(11)  A provision that allow election observers complete access to the election process. Because transparency is absolutely essential to a fair and secure system, political parties, candidates, and third-party organizations should all be allowed to have observers in every aspect of the election process. The only limitation on such observers would be that they cannot interfere with the voting and counting process.

(12)  A requirement that a representative of the election office (local Board of Elections) be present or otherwise available to answer the questions of the observers. By law, they should be allowed to be in a position to observe everything going on, other than the actual voting by individuals. (Additionally, election officials should be prohibited from stationing observers so far away that they cannot observe the process, including such procedures as the opening of absentee ballots and the verification process).

(13)  A provision that permits voting assistance. Any individual providing assistance to a voter in a voting booth because the voter is illiterate, disabled, or otherwise requires assistance should be required to complete a form, to be filed with poll election officials, providing their name, address, contact information, and the reason they are providing assistance. They should also be required to provide a photo ID.

(14)  A prohibition on early vote counting. To avoid premature release of election results, the counting of ballots, including absentee and early votes, should not begin until the polls close at the end of Election Day. However, if a state insists on beginning the count before Election Day, it should ban the release of results until the evening of Election Day, subject to criminal penalties.

(15)  A requirement that ALL votes are counted and reported at the precinct level.

(16)  A law that provides the state legislature with legal standing. State legislatures must ensure that they have legal standing—either through a specific state law or through a constitutional amendment if that is required—to sue other state officials, such as governors or secretaries of state, who make or attempt to make unauthorized changes in state election laws. [For example, if a secretary of state extends the deadline set by state law for the receipt of absentee ballots, legislatures should have legal standing to contest that unilateral change that overrides state law. They should be classified as a necessary party in any lawsuit. And voters should be provided by state law with the ability to file a writ of mandamus against any state or local official who fails to abide by, or enforce, a state election-law requirement. And per another example, Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar, in 2020, made changes to election law unilaterally]. We must ensure that such unilateral or otherwise “shady” practices can’t happen again in other states or in future elections.

(17)  A state requirement that the election process be audited (by non-partisan auditors) and that a post-election audit be conducted (also by non-partisan state auditors) to ensure the public has confidence in the election process and the integrity of the election results.

(18)  A requirement that only the state legislature may change standards of what votes are valid, in order that the same standard is applied statewide.

(19)  Easy and equal access to the ballot box.

(20)  An acknowledgment by the state legislature or state Board of Elections and by local Boards of Election that the State has the authority, under the Tenth Amendment, to nullify all federally-mandated election laws.

(21)  A process and procedure for voters, who suspect fraud and other election illegality, to contest the election results in their precinct (in their county, and in their state) and demand a recount, an audit (regular or forensic), or a special election with all possibility means of scrutiny in place.  [Texas has such a provision].

(22)  A provision that punishes a political party should it be found to be at the center of any election fraud (thus requiring a recount, an audit, or special election) to include that party being responsible for the costs of such recount, audit, or special election.  Such costs should not have to be borne by the law-abiding taxpayers.

Mexico has had a long history of election fraud. Partly because its leaders were concerned about a drop in foreign investment if it wasn’t perceived to be a legitimate democracy, Mexico recently instituted strict election reforms.  Voters must present a biometric ID – an ID with not only a photo, but also a thumb print. Voters also have indelible ink applied to their thumbs, preventing them from voting more than once. And absentee voting is prohibited, even for people living outside the country.

Those who oppose election integrity reforms here in the U.S. often condemn it as a means of “voter suppression.” But in Mexico, the percentage of people voting rose from 59% before the reforms to 68% after. It turned out that Mexicans were more, not less, likely to vote when they had confidence that their votes mattered.

Here are the remarks Lieutenant Governor Robinson delivered to the NC General Assembly (April 22, 2020):

I am the first black lieutenant governor of North Carolina. I hail from Greensboro, the home of the Woolworth sit-ins. It was an epi-center of the Civil Rights movement. I grew up poor as the ninth of ten children, in a home marred by alcoholism. But I had a mother who was a strong woman of faith and she sustained us. She was also a woman who lived through the horribleness of Jim Crow and witnessed the sacrifices made by those to insure that black voices would be heard in government. I know right now she is up in heaven smiling as she sees her son in this committee hearing. But today I am not here to talk about myself……  I am very proud of the history in this nation of my people. My people were put in the belly of ships, and bound in chains during the middle passage. My people were whipped, beaten, and sold as property into slavery. During Reconstruction and during Jim Crow, my people were in intimidated, harassed, and even killed to keep them from having a voice in government. Symbols like chains, nooses, and burning crosses were not just symbols of death but symbols of forced, coerced silence. The sacrifices of our ancestors so I can have the opportunity to become the first black lieutenant governor of my state, to see a black man sit in the White House for two terms, and for millions of us to become leaders in business, athletics, government, and culture add up to an incredible story of victory.

Today we hear that our states are being compared to Jim Crow, that black voices are being silenced and that black voices are being kept out. How?   By bullets, by bombs, by nooses?  NO…  by requiring a free photo ID to secure their vote. Let me say that again – By requiring a free ID to secure the vote. How absolutely preposterous!  Am I to believe that black Americans who have overcome the atrocities of slavery, who were victorious in the Civil Rights movement, and who now sit in the highest level of this government cannot figure out how to get a FREE ID to secure their votes?  Am I to believe that they need to be coddled by politicians because we can’t figure out how to make our voices be heard?  Are you kidding me??  The notion that black people must be protected from a free ID to secure their votes is not only insane, it is insulting. This has nothing to do with politics. It has everything to do with power.” 

Background

The presidential election of 2016, and especially the presidential election of 2020, exposed numerous flaws in the United States’ election procedures. Across the nation, polling mechanisms, the design of election ballots, voting rules, hours, and allocation of financial resources vary significantly between states and localities. In many jurisdictions utilizing older types of voting equipment (such as punch-card machines) ballots were disqualified at significantly higher rates than in jurisdictions employing more accurate and reliable equipment (such as optical scan machines). Moreover, due to the lack of legislative prioritization for funding of election administration, officials in many states and localities do not have the resources to hire adequate numbers of election workers and conduct meaningful voter education programs. Additionally, in some instances, efforts to purge ineligible voters from registration rolls (including those who have died, moved, or been sentenced as felons) have resulted in the mistaken elimination of fully eligible voters from registration rolls. Finally, we can’t forget that the 2020 presidential election allowed a number of additional votes to be cast because of the pandemic.

Election laws that place high burdens of proof on the voter, combined with inadequate checks and balances in these systems in place on Election Day, have made it difficult for aggrieved voters to obtain redress, and the inadequacy of election laws (which seem to only be getting worse and worse) make it incredibly difficult for those alleging voter and election fraud to have reported incidents investigated.

Complaining about the 2020 election without offering and enacting remedies doesn’t fix anything. It only adds to our collective frustration with our overly-ambitious (and scheming) political parties and with those voters without character, morals, or ethics who are willing to cheat the system.

Our American tradition teaches us that the process of choosing leaders is not a privilege, but a collective responsibility. We teach in our schools that we have a civic duty to be informed and to vote. Voting is the most democratic element of our constitutional republic – “the voice of the people.”

In order to restore confidence in the integrity and fairness of our nation’s election process, government agencies at the federal, state and local levels must work together to evaluate the various components of our electoral system. And then each of those government systems should take any necessary and all appropriate steps to strengthen and/or change policy at the federal, state and local levels to ensure that all persons wishing to vote are given a meaningful opportunity to do so, and all votes determined to be valid in accordance with established fair standards are counted accordingly. Congress and other government agencies should assess approaches that aim to ensure fairness with regard to casting and counting of votes, including, but not limited to, the implementation of a uniform nationwide poll closing time and uniform standards for counting disputed ballots within individual states.

When we think of voting, we instinctively assume that we have the RIGHT to vote. And I contend, with absolute certainty, that we indeed possess that right. There are several, however, who comment that there is no explicit right to vote in the US Constitution. And there are groups which advocate that the time has come to amend the Constitution to finally include such an express declaration of that right.

Why do I say that we absolutely have the right to vote? 

We all know, or should know, that the united States of America was founded as a republic. The definition of “republic” is: “a state in which supreme power is held by the people and theirelected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president rather than a monarch.”  It is arguably a given that we have the right to vote. Representatives cannot be “elected” if the people don’t have the right to elect them (ie, vote for the candidate of their choice). Our US Constitution, through several of its amendments (Fifteenth, Nineteenth, and Twenty-Six) assures that no citizen under the age of 18 can be denied this right. Furthermore, the Declaration of Independence, which lays out the principles of freedom and liberty, and the foundational philosophy for government in the American colonies, reads: “that to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”  In other words, we have, each in our own State, a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people” and it is certainly assumed that “of the people” means that ordinary citizens are selected (ie, elected) “by the people” (through a voting process).

A DECLARATION OF THE RIGHT TO VOTE

WHEREAS, the United States was founded upon the principle of self-government in which the right to vote is the most important and fundamental right of the people, and;

WHEREAS, the right to vote is inherent in the fact that the united States of America was established as a republic (a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives…).

WHERERAS, the Declaration of Independence clearly and expressly states that our States, and by extension our country, is a “government of the people, by the people, for the people”  {Exact wording: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness….’]

WHEREAS, our Founding Fathers thought that the right to vote was critical to our form of government, and viewed it as a virtually sacred act.

  • For example, Samuel Adams, the leader of the Boston Sons of Liberty and one of our most active and passionate of Founding Fathers had this to say about the right, and indeed, the duty, to vote: “Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual – or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country.”  [The Boston Gazette on April 16, 1781.]  Adams also said: “Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote…that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country.” 
  • Alexander Hamilton, a delegate to the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 and a main author of The Federalist Papers, wrote: “A share in the sovereignty of the state, which is exercised by the citizens at large, in voting at elections is one of the most important rights of the subject, and in a republic ought to stand foremost in the estimation of the law.”
  • Thomas Jefferson, certainly one of our greatest Founder and the author of our Declaration of Independence, wrote: “The elective franchise, if guarded as the ark of our safety, will peaceably dissipate all combinations to subvert a Constitution, dictated by the wisdom, and resting on the will of the people.
  • And finally, John Jay, one of the three authors of The Federalist Papers and appointed to the bench of the very first US Supreme Court, said: “The Americans are the first people whom Heaven has favored with an opportunity of deliberating upon and choosing the forms of government under which they should live.”

WHEREAS, 18th-century American lexicographer, Noah Webster said: “…If the citizens neglect their Duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the Laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizen will be violated or disregarded.” 

WHEREAS, our US Bill of Rights, and our state Bill of Rights (Declaration of Rights), requires the government to protect and secure the Natural Law Rights of the sovereign States and their sovereign citizens. The Fifteenth, Nineteenth, and Twenty-Sixth Amendments specifically protect a citizen’s right to vote. Free and secure elections are the only way to preserve faith in government and individual freedom.

WHEREAS, the right to vote is an INDIVIDUAL right and not a COLLECTIVE right. While we indeed have a constitutional republic as our system of government, there are some democratic elements associated with it and the biggest one is our power at the ballot box to choose the representatives that comprise our “people’s government.”

WHEREAS, the nation’s state Secretaries of State are responsible for protecting an individual’s right to vote by ensuring access, accuracy and integrity in elections.

WHEREAS, the conduct of elections is primarily the responsibility of state and local election officials, while the right to vote for federal officials is governed by the US Constitution (see Article I, Section 4, Clause 1: “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of choosing Senators.”).  In the case United States v. Classic (1941), the Supreme Court held that the right to vote for Members of Congress is derived from the Federal Constitution. Congress may use its power under this clause, combined with the Necessary and Proper Clause, to regulate the times, places, and manner of electing Members of Congress so as to fully safeguard the integrity of the process. Article II (Sections 1-4) address the election of the President of the United States (see below).

WHEREAS, America’s voting systems and election procedures must ensure that all votes are counted accurately and that voting is as, convenient, accessible and secure as possible.

WHEREAS, our collective expertise with election issues and our strong commitment to fair, secure and accurate elections will enhance our democratic process.

US CONSTITUTION, ARTICLE II (The Executive Branch), Sections 1-4

Clause 1.  The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows

Clause 2.  Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

Clause 3.  The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President. But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; A quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the Electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall chuse from them by Ballot the Vice President.

Clause 4.  The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

References

Hans A. von Spakovsky, “9 Election Reforms States Can Implement to Prevent Mistakes and Voter Fraud,” The Heritage Foundation, February 2, 2021.  Referenced at:  https://www.heritage.org/election-integrity/commentary/9-election-reforms-states-can-implement-prevent-mistakes-and-vote

Professor Edmund R. Kallina (Univ. of Central Florida), “Was the 1960 Presidential Election Stolen? The Case of Illinois,” Presidential Studies Quarterly, Vo. 15, No. 1 (Inaugurating the President /Winter 1985), pp. 113-118. 

John R. Lott, Jr., “Is Ensuring Election Integrity Anti-Democratic?”, IMPRIMIS (a publication of Hillsdale College), October 2021. Referenced at: http://www.hillsdale.edu

NC Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson Addresses the NC House Committee on the Judiciary, YouTube video, April 22, 2021.  Referenced at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTvKswJjves&ab_channel=BreitbartNews   

“Voter Fraud Map: Election Fraud Database,” The Heritage Foundation, 2020.  Referenced at:  https://www.heritage.org/voterfraud

“More Resources on Election Integrity,” The Heritage Foundation.  Referenced at:  https://www.heritage.org/election-integrity

Role of Congress in Regulating Federal Elections – https://constitution.congress.gov/browse/essay/artI_S4_C1_1_1_1_2/

US Constitution, Article II – https://constitution.congress.gov/browse/article-2/section-1/

About forloveofgodandcountry

I'm originally from New Jersey where I spent most of my life. I now live in North Carolina with my husband and 4 children. I'm an attorney
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2 Responses to RESOLUTION TO ENSURE ELECTION INTEGRITY

  1. Pingback: RESOLUTION TO ENSURE ELECTION INTEGRITY – Liberty & Freedom

  2. gratzite says:

    Great care is needed in the selection and support of government representatives.
    So many have turned out to be psychos creating a tyranny, proposed for your protection.

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