Letter: Voting claims are bogus

I am responding to a recent letter talking about alleged election misconduct in a number of states, including Wisconsin. I grew up in Lima and now live in Wisconsin and can assure the writer that our election process was as honest and transparent as Ohio’s.

A number of false claims have been made about Wisconsin’s election and refuted by numerous reputable resources, including our Pulitzer Prize-winning Milwaukee Journal – a much more credible source than the social media sites making these claims.

Wisconsin did not suddenly “discover” hundreds of thousands of ballots in the middle of the night. These were the mail-in votes from Milwaukee and other large cities. Our hardworking poll workers could not, by law, start counting these ballots until election day, which is why it took until the middle of the night to complete the count and turn in the results.

The counting process in Milwaukee was live streamed and I’ve heard of no one claiming to have seen anyone carrying suitcases full of ballots in or out of the room. I might also note that the law requiring absentee votes not be counted until election day was passed by a GOP-dominated legislature several years ago.

Another tweeted claim that that was widely shared said that Wisconsin had more votes than registered voters. Again, this is not true, according to the fact checkers at PolitiFact Wisconsin. One of the tweets making this claim was comparing the vote count from 2020 with the count of registered voters from 2018.

According to the bipartisan Wisconsin Election Commission, the “State of Wisconsin had 3,684,726 active registered voters on November 1, 2020.” The New York Times reports that a total of “3,296,836” votes were cast in Wisconsin as of the date the PolitiFact article was published. In addition, Wisconsin allows voters to register the same day they vote so those registrations would not be included in any pre-election count.

Other claims that have been debunked include one saying fraud was suspected because the same person had “signed” many ballots in Madison. The truth is that the envelopes for absentee ballots included the initials of the clerk who issued the absentee ballot under the heading “ballot issued by.” So naturally they were all initialed by the same clerk.

A claim fact checked in today’s paper said that that a contractor had overheard postal officials several day after the election talking about orders to post-date ballots.

Even if this flimsy, hearsay evidence was valid, the fact is that, by Wisconsin law, no ballots actually received after 8 p.m. Nov. 3 in Wisconsin could be counted no matter what day they were postmarked. The date doesn’t matter if the ballots weren’t submitted by then.

Having lived in Wisconsin almost 40 years and voted in every election, I can testify to the processes and procedures. When I voted in person, our local poll workers checked my ID every time I went into vote, even though they are friends and neighbors. We were also required to mail in identification when we registered in order to receive absentee ballots.

Our officials followed the exact same procedures they did four years ago when Trump won the state. I can tell you our poll workers and officials are as hard-working, honest and thorough as their counterparts in Ohio.

Kathleen Hoersten Quirk,

former Lima resident


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