Bernie Sanders Exposes The Republican Fraud Behind Voter ID Laws Via New GAO Report


Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) initiated the request with the GAO that led to the newly released report on voter ID laws. The report found that voter ID laws have nothing to do with voter fraud and everything to do with lowering election turnout.

According to a statement from the office of Sen. Sanders,

The Government Accountability Office report also found scant evidence of voter fraud that the new laws that ostensibly are designed to discourage.

The report was requested by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.). The senators asked the research arm of Congress to investigate what they called an “alarming number” of new state laws that make it “significantly harder” for millions of voters to cast ballots.

The report calculated the direct cost to would-be voters in the 17 states where voters must present a drivers’ license or other state identification at polling places. The price for drivers’ licenses ranges from $14.50 in Indiana to $58.50 in Rhode Island. The cost of getting a birth certificate needed to obtain a non-driver ID ranges from $7 in North Dakota to $25 in Georgia.

Focusing on two states with strict ID laws, Kansas and Tennessee, the GAO found greater falloffs in voter turnout in those states than in states without restrictive voting laws. The 2012 general election turnout compared to 2008 was as much as 3.2 percent less in Kansas and 2.2 percent less in Tennessee than in other states. The falloff was greatest among African-Americans, young people and newly-registered voters, the GAO said.

Sanders said, “We must make it easier, not harder, for poor and working people to vote and to participate in the political process. These state laws aren’t really intended to discourage fraud, they’re intended to discourage voting. The GAO looked at study after study and found no credible evidence of voter fraud having had any impact whatsoever on the outcome of any election in recent history.”

The only thing that voter ID laws accomplish is making it more difficult for people who are likely support Democrats to vote. The GAO found that voter ID laws in the states that were studied caused turnout to drop 2-3 points. In close elections, like the current midterms, those few points can make the difference between defeat and victory for Democrats.

The study confirms that the voter fraud threat is a smokescreen that is being used by Republicans to depress turnout and keep people from voting. Sen. Sanders deserves a great deal of the credit for this report. Sanders initiated the request for the GAO to do the study.

It might seem obvious that that voter suppression is the purpose of voter ID laws, but having data to support the claims makes all the difference between having facts versus a political debate about beliefs. The facts are on the side of those who understand the real intent of voter ID laws.

Voter fraud is code for keeping Democrats away from the polls. Republicans can only win elections if the electorate is smaller, older, white, and conservative. The GOP can’t win on ideas, so they are trying to rig the game. The GAO report is significant because it gives voting advocates ammo to use in their attempts to level the playing field.

Bernie Sanders has demonstrated once again that he is the Koch fueled Republican Party’s worst nightmare.

49 Replies to “Bernie Sanders Exposes The Republican Fraud Behind Voter ID Laws Via New GAO Report”

  1. Screaming voter fraud works with their constituency.

    Conservatives tend to have a binary thought process and are often unable to process statistical information.

    In their mind, just one illegal vote justifies the need for identification even though the number of fraudulent votes do not have a statistical impact on the results.

  2. I commend the senator for his efforts, but I fear it will be for naught. The republican controlled legislatures, aided by the republican controlled courts and protected by the Roberts court will continue to suppress the vote so long as it benefits their paymasters, the Kochs.

  3. In-Person Voter Fraud Is Virtually Nonexistent, Federal Judge Rules Posted: 04/29/2014
    WASHINGTON — Trying to crack down on in-person voter fraud isn’t a strong enough justification for Wisconsin’s voter ID law, a federal judge ruled Tuesday, because voter impersonation virtually never occurs now and is unlikely to become a real problem in the future. “The evidence at trial established that virtually no voter impersonation occurs in Wisconsin,” Adelman ruled in Frank v. Walker. “The defendants could not point to a single instance of known voter impersonation occurring in Wisconsin at any time in the recent past
    We already have a voter I D it is called you voter registration card and your signature affirming that it is you voting. Why do we need MORE added I D??

  4. The only way to fix what these criminals think is broken is any office that is national must conform to federal standards.

    As long as we let these boss tweed wannabes suppress, gerrymandered and whatever else the devils can think of the further they will divide the country

  5. Then there is the candidate for Attorney General of Arkansas who was registered in three places, Washington, DC, Virginia and Arkansas, and she voted in all of them in one election. Oooops! Guess she won’t get on the ballot now. But, but….IOKIYAR! Dang! Maybe they better start checking their own before trying to keep “others” from voting.

  6. I find it incomprehensible to imagine that republicans have gotten away with such devious actions. All those voter supression laws should be reversed. I also think it is time for a changing of the guard. Now, how can we change the laws so that fallen republicans can’t collect unemployment assistance or Obamacare? After all, they voted against it.

  7. Bernie is right, of course. The Republicans can get away with this because they have some very smart people devising schemes that sound good (red meat) to a corrupt base that either doesn’t understand the actuarial truths of voter ID that guarantee margins for them to win even with exceptional efforts to acquire ID’s this voting cycle, or they know this is disenfranchisement and simply don’t care because it aids their side. My only question is where are the really smart people on the left that could be interrupting these efforts before it even gets this far? The Republicans are a special type of evil that requires an exceptional brilliance for equity. Besides a few like Bernie and Elizabeth Warren, I surmise most Democrats are too corrupted themselves to play adversary to such evil. In other words, it looks like it will get a lot worse before it gets better.

  8. Yeah, she said it was just Democrats out to get her. These people like her are shameless, they’ll do anything to win while accusing the other side of doing what, in reality, they are doing. Nothing but a bunch of crooks and liars.

  9. Voter suppression laws are the real voter fraud. By eliminating voters from the rolls, these so-called preservers of election integrity have polluted the election waters with a deadly poison, the poison of racism and class-ism. Prejudices of all kinds are violations of justice and integrity. The instigators of these laws are classic election manipulators, just as the political machines of the 19th century who paid people to vote multiple times.

  10. How does Sanders know that the falloffs in voter turnout weren’t due to fewer people illegally voting? I could easily go vote with the fake name Becky Smith, but not if I was asked to produce a picture ID.

  11. In Wisconsin there are voter rolls at the polling place. You must claim you name and address to receive a ballot. If on the outside chance someone came to the polls and claimed your name you would know it when you yourself showed up to vote. We would know of the fraud as a result. If what I have described has actually occurred, it would extremely rare and would have less skewing effect on counted votes than the overall disenfranchisement voter ID brings for this coming election. And that is the reason many of us view this as a form of suppression, it is within a context and is real.

  12. Same thing in Oklahoma. Methinks to many people watch spy shows on TV and think its easy for Joe the fraudster to produce multiple fake ID’S

  13. We will always need government standards for voting, clean air & water, to name a few, including a federally set minimum wage since people, especially Republicans, can’t be trusted to do the right thing.

  14. The lying, cheating, stealing GOP will always assume others are just like they are. It takes one to know one.

  15. I remember Senator Joe McCarthy who used to say “that if there were one Communist in the United States, then that is one Communist too many”. He wasn’t referring to a current member of the CPUSA, of which there were a few remaining thousands in the 1950’s, with many undercover FBI informants. No he was referring to tens of millions of Americans who had ever been around some Communists, or at least accused of being around people who had been accused of being Communists, whether they had been near them for a few years, a few weeks, maybe a few minutes. And any left-leaning liberals or socialists were added to this mix. And then these millions and millions of “communists” were still gainfully employed, not incarcerated, which bothered the senator from Wisconsin exceedingly. And now I am hearing it again, if even one single incident of voter fraud were to occur anywhere in the entire fifty states, then I say that is one voter fraud too many.

  16. You would have to drive many hours from precinct to precinct and present a name that has been registered on a voter list.

    That’s why it has not been, nor will ever be a problem.

    Keep on fucking that chicken.

  17. what is surprising to me, now that you’ve asked, is the fact that the GOP never requested the study’s as they are using voter fraud as an excuse to keep people from voting.

    The Constitution gives us the right to vote. The Supreme Court and the GOP will take that away from some of us. tthe GOP states that are doing this must be punished, and punished heavily. If they cannot prove voter fraud the people who are initiating this should be immediately indicted.

  18. I thought we were all trying to get more people to vote. why cheat right wing. if your message is right why do you have to cheat and try to suppress the vote? shame

  19. So you are saying that it is OK to disenfranchise tens of thousands of voters just so that one person won’t possibly commit voter fraud? Your priorities seem to be misplaced.

  20. Because they know the only people who vote for them are the minority. Let someone suggest a national holiday for freedom and to be able to receive any federal benefits you must vote. The next sound you hear will be we cant do that because of FREEDUMB

  21. Nice attempt to paint democrats as socialists or communists but your post is a complete utter failure as is you political party.

    As Benjamin Franklin is quoted

    “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety” does not mean what it seems to say. Not at all.

    Try to stop your stupidity by “googling” the term Republican voter fraud as we all know that it is the right wing who is involved in wide scale voter disenfranchisement and out right fraud.

    I’ll just assume you are too inbred to even bother though.

  22. If you go back and read it a second time you will find that those were the findings of the Government Accountability Office , the investigating arm of congress .These were not the Senator Sanders findings .

  23. I agree, Chazz. That’s exactly what I’ve been saying for quite awhile. With all the criminal acts going on in Congress and the bigger criminals for whom Congress is the puppet group, not one attempt has been made to investigate and put Charles and David Koch behind bars. Or the Waltons or any other member of the 1% who are in on the Koch scheme for a takeover by the Oligarchy. I wrote to my Democratic representatives about that and my emails were blocked. After that I sent all of my communications to Senator Bernie Sanders because he is truly among only a handful who have our backs.

    However, as you wrote, there aren’t enough Democrats to play adversary to such evil. In fact, there is hardly anyone with authority bold or clever enough to outwit these demons. President Obama had plenty of chances to make an issue of the types of abuse going on in Congress, SCOTUS and the red states. The Roosevelts and Truman wouldn’t put up with the same types and took action against them and won…

  24. Perhaps you could but it would be a really inefficient way to steal an election. The few cases that have been discovered have usually been mistakes on the part of the voters such as trying to vote it their previous district because they forgot to register in their new district (pulled that one myself in 1976), forgot they voted by mail or changed their mind afterwards and thought they could just vote again and other dumb bits of reasoning, not “oh, I’m stealing this election from so-and-so” (rub hands together in maniacal glee).


    If the object of voter ID laws, according to the liberals and evidently Bernie Sanders, is to suppress the minority vote so that Conservatives can win, then can someone explain to me why minority voters have been increasing since 1996, and surpassed the quantity of white voters in 2012? Even in states with strict ID laws, like Indiana and Tennessee?

  26. In what year did the SCOTUS strike down the Voting rights act? 2013
    Now I know trying to put 2 and 2 together is kind of hard for you but try to read your post again and get back at us when you realize what you printed was bovine excrement

  27. So what are we saying here? That Black people and the young are too lazy to get
    ID’s? Or that Black people and the young commit a disproportionate amount of
    voter fraud? Or that between 2008 and 2012 the Black and youth vote fell off
    because of their disappointment with President Obama’s performance?
    [The study cautioned that the results from Kansas and Tennessee don’t
    necessarily apply to other states with stricter ID laws. It also found that of
    10 other studies that mostly focused on voting before 2008, five found no
    significant impact from voter ID laws, four found decreases and one found an
    increase.]Sooo what?
    There are lies, damn lies and statistics?! Ridiculous!

  28. I don’t want to stop any US citizen from voting, as I think it is our civic duty to vote. Unfortunately, due to the large influx of people who are NOT US citizens, the time has come to have to have a National ID, or as they have in Mexico, ‘credencial de elector con fotografía’. In Mexico, this card is available (for free) to every eligible Mexican citizen. There are hundreds of service centers nationwide where you can get one. It is a photo-ID card with a thumbprint and an embossed hologram. The ‘credencial de elector con fotografía’ has actually increased voter participation in Mexico and is used by many poor, who previously had no way of being able to identify themselves, for daily transactions that require ID.

    We could do something very similar here; make the card free and easily available (if Mexico can afford to, we can) to all US citizens.

  29. Supreme Court allows North Carolina voting restrictions to go into effect

    The Supreme Court acted Wednesday to limit voting rights in North Carolina, after doing the same for Ohio the week previous. Early voting was the key issue in both cases. In North Carolina, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a dissent, which Justice Sonia Sotomayor joined:

    “The Court of Appeals determined that at least two of the measures—elimination of same-day registration and termination of out-of-precinct voting—risked significantly reducing opportunities for black voters to exercise the franchise in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. I would not displace that record-based reasoned judgment,” Ginsburg wrote.
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

  30. Really? Are Democrats too dumb to figure out how to get a photo ID? But not too dumb to vote? Honestly, don’t you have to have ID for welfare, food stamps and Sec 8?

  31. Hello again.
    I don’t think anything I suggested would cause voter suppression, as I didn’t mention any of the things you linked to. Would you be in favour of a free national ID that is very easy to obtain for all US citizens?

  32. Yes I do support a national ID but you Cons are against it as the article suggested. Something about the mark of the beast with the religious nuts. Then states rights among the 10th amendment freaks.

  33. I’m not against it, and I know nothing about a ‘mark of a beast’. BTW, I’m an independent who tends towards centrism.

  34. …first off, there WAS a recent case o’ voter fraud in Wisconsin…a REPUBLICAN…secondly, check out how many GAO studies were SUPPRESSED by the GOPT…the idiots were recently caught sayin’ that the only way the GAO could put out a “honest report” is to force them to slant their reports towards the GOPT…{Lyin’ Ryan}…when Djchefron said that the ONLY way the GOPT can win is by lying and cheating…and now they’re desperate…

  35. If election fraud takes place, it will not take place at the ballot box. It just seems to me that a modern Country in the 21st Century which often requires and commonly uses picture identification for every conceivable facet of contemporary life is not overburdening its citizens to ask for such a simple document to provide identity to vote. Make them free – once.

  36. They would have to be free, otherwise they would be considered a poll tax, which is unconstitutional. But if Mexico can provide them to its citizens, surely the US can also.

  37. Very interesting study (I scanned the entire thing). It tends to confirm my view of human nature. Not sure how to combat it though. And although some systems may start off idealistic, all political/economic systems end up having a powerful elite – and everyone else.

  38. Left out of the GAO report: Turnout ROSE in Texas after Voter ID was in place; ID is free in Wisconsin for voting purposes (and they will even get your birth certificate FOR YOU for free). The two negatives noted in the report as proof that Voter ID is bad ignore proof of the opposite. How am I to trust the GAO report if it looks only at evidence that supports the claim trying to be made and ignores evidence that refutes the claim? Partial, cherry-picked, evidence doesn’t hold sway with intelligent, critical-thinking, big-picture people.

  39. A “critical-thinking” person would know that voter ID laws encompass more then texas and wisconsin

  40. Sorry but I totally disagree with Bernie on this—we need a drivers licence to drive, a social security card, so why not a voter ID card.

  41. I’m not sure if you understand what is happening here. The issue here is not whether or not we should use voter ID cards, but which voter ID cards can you use. Many states have taken away the right of college IDs to be used, but allow the use of gun licenses. many states will not give out an ID to people who need them and who do not drive.

    Also if you notice, the article talks abouts voter ID laws. The law is being discussed are laws that stop people from registering voting at certain times, take away much of the early voting times, close precincts early in minority areas, take away polling places on colleges and in the area near colleges. And this is just a drop in the hat.

    So again, the issue is not whether or not we should have voter ID. But the laws associated with those voter IDs. But also trying to compare drivers licenses to voting IDs really doesn’t cut it. I have voted in two states and I’ve had to have a drivers license to do so since I started voting

  42. Impassioned ignorance is no better than simple ignorance per se, Nick. The reason for voter ID laws is not to prevent fraud, it is to suppress voting by minorities, women and the poor.

  43. Democrats out to get her? My God…..she and the Republicans are out to get the Democrats…get them out of the voting booth.

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