“It’s not the people who vote that count, it’s the people who count the votes,” Joseph Stalin, Soviet Union dictator for more than two decades, is believed to have once stated.

It is unknown whether this statement can actually be attributed to Stalin (1878-1953), but whoever stated this makes the spot-on point, we must have free and fair elections.

As an American citizen and California voter I am concerned about the integrity of state and national elections on November 3, 2020.

And as the Republican candidate for California State Assembly’s 9th District I am also concerned about the integrity of my election against my Democratic opponent this fall.

Without free and fair elections electoral choices can be overturned, according to the National Commission on Federal Election Reform. Even before the counting of votes the integrity of elections can be affected by voter fraud.

To prevent voter fraud I am opposed to remote (online), distance (mail) and substitute (ballot harvesting) voting.

Online

Online voting is not a viable or acceptable solution and must not be on the table. No method of casting ballots over the Internet is safe, secure or trustworthy. Period! There is the probability of hacking. We’ll get through this COVID-19 pandemic, and it’s critical that our elections go forward providing all voters the opportunity to cast a trustworthy and secure ballot.

Mail

Based on federal data from the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, millions of mail ballots were never counted as completed votes. If you vote by mail, in contrast to polling places, there is no one to help you and fix a mistake. Mail voting mistakes are fatal to your vote. Unsupervised mail ballots encourage vote-buying, intimidation and absentee ballot fraud as previously seen in North Carolina, Mississippi and Texas.

Ballot Harvesting

Vote harvesting occurs when third parties —like campaign workers— collect absentee ballots from voters and deliver them to election officials. Allowing individuals other than the voter or his immediate family to handle absentee ballots is a recipe for mischief and wrongdoing. Giving third parties who have a stake in the outcome of an election unsupervised access to voters and their absentee ballots is not good.

To complicate the issues of online voting, voting by mail and ballot harvesting —all fraught with risk— we have another problem.

Judicial Watch, a Washington DC government, politics and watchdog foundation, notes that when a jurisdiction has a high voter registration rate it suggests that that jurisdiction is not removing voters who have died or who have moved elsewhere, as required by federal law. Judicial Watch found major voting list issues in California. Imperial, Monterey, Orange, Riverside, San Diego, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Stanislas and Yolo counties have excessive registration rates or have failed to cancel sufficient numbers of ineligible registrations. Fortunately Sacramento and San Joaquin counties (the area which includes the 9th Assembly District) is not on this list.

I am a man, a husband, a father, a church leader and a candidate who identifies problems and offers simple common sense solutions to solve them.

One way we can we simply ensure fair and free elections is to have voter ID laws. Contrary to mainstream media reports —parroting an often repeated Democrat talking point— voter ID laws do not “suppress” anyone’s vote. Among a variety of minority groups and political affiliations, no significant change in turnout occurred after voter ID laws went into effect. Election fraud often goes undetected. Even when election fraud is discovered, investigators and prosecutors often opt to take no action.

Since states control much of the electoral process, they must pass laws requiring government-issued IDs to vote. That ensures people aren’t stealing others’ identities and their right to vote.

We must ensure that all ballots are counted accurately and that we have free and fair elections. I encourage everyone to VOTE! Make sure that your vote counts. Let’s also make sure it doesn’t matter who counts the votes.

In closing I’d like to ask my Democratic opponent this question: If the Democratic National Committee (DNC) opposes voter ID, then why does the DNC require IDs to attend Democratic National Conventions?

—Eric Rigard

 

Information compiled from The Heritage Foundation. Please visit https://www.rigardforassembly.com and donate. Thank you!