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Voter Fraud In Virginia

By Greg L | 13 January 2011 | Illegal Aliens, Crime, Prince William County | 29 Comments

When someone applies for a driver’s license in Virginia they’re “offered” a voter registration application, even in the most unusual circumstances. Even though DMV is supposed to be gathering information about an applicant’s legal status and citizenship, they still seem to manage to extend this offer for voting privileges to people who they know, or darned well should know, aren’t citizens based on the information they just had handed to them by the applicant when they were applying for a driver’s license. As a result we get a steady stream of people registering to vote who just aren’t eligible.  Surprise.

I was curious about how much of a problem this really is, so I started asking questions, figuring that one strong indicator of a problem might be the incidence of people asking to be excused from jury duty because they’re not citizens. In Virginia (as is the case in many other states) the way you end up in the jury pool is by registering to vote, so if the process was working correctly, you shouldn’t have anyone showing up for jury selection who isn’t a citizen. To that end I asked the Clerk of the Court in Prince William County, Michele McQuigg, how I might go about finding out how much this is happening, and she was most helpful in providing what answers she could.

It turns out that in the past five years we’ve had 24 individuals excluded from jury duty because they’re not citizens, and already we’ve had four of those this year. That’s just the ones who admitted they weren’t citizens to a court. It’s not a huge number, but when you extrapolate out to the number of registered voters in the county it suggests that if you called every registered voter in Prince William County and the two enclosed independent cities for jury service, seven hundred and eleven of these registered voters would say they’re not citizens.  Quite a few more certainly might be noncitizens who are willing to perjure themselves out of concern that they might get prosecuted for fraudulently registering to vote, fraudulently voting, or being an illegal alien.

This situation isn’t unique to Virginia, and other states have in the past tried to determine how many fraudulent voter registrations developed into fraudulent votes. The percentage seems to run about 30% in those other states, so we can project that in the last election 213 noncitizens cast votes in the Prince William County area for candidates in the 1st, 10th and 11th Congressional Districts. I wouldn’t call this a huge voting block, but on occasion we get some close elections and numbers like this could potentiality swing an election.  Whether it does or not, it’s still pretty outrageous.  Your vote could be canceled out by an illegal alien, and no one is trying to stop that from happening right now.

In order to prevent this problem, or at least keep it somewhat under control, you’d think when someone who is clearly registered to vote swears under penalty of perjury that they’re a non-citizen, someone would inform the registrar’s office so their name can be stricken from the rolls. I’d fully expect that absent any evidence of an intent to commit fraud that prosecutors would avail themselves of their discretion and not do anything but warn folks not to do this again, but at least we’d scrub the voter list of ineligible voters this way. Now if these ineligible registrants also voted, I’m not sure I’d be quite so tolerant. Fraudulent voting is to be taken seriously, or at least it should be.

The federal government enacted “motor-voter” trying to increase the level of participation in local, state and federal elections.  Not only has that failed to happen (participation rates continue to drop, although that’s not been a steady change), but now we get non-citizens participating in our elections either through ignorance, or perhaps by design.  If we’re going to hand out voter registrations like they’re candy, we need to start verifying the information we get and doing a better job of maintaining the list, or we have to rethink the idea that everyone who wants a driver’s license should automatically be begged to register and handed an application.

All these gaping holes in the process are an invitation for abuse.  We close them now, or we will without any doubt get the abuse we are so eagerly inviting in spades.



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29 Comments

  1. Senator Scott Brown (RINO) said on 13 Jan 2011 at 8:54 pm:
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    Good work Greg. Too bad its up to concerned citizens to do the work of the “independent media”.

  2. Anonymous said on 13 Jan 2011 at 8:58 pm:
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    McQuigg, or one of her staff, should be able to check this out in less than an hour. Just ask them see if any of the 24 you mention voted. Those records are readily available by computer.

  3. Anonymous said on 13 Jan 2011 at 11:11 pm:
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    Now that I think about it some more, McQuigg really should be on top of this. She knows how big the illegal immigration problem is in this county. Greg, did you ask her if she checked the names of those four from this year against the voting records to see if they voted.

  4. Greg L said on 13 Jan 2011 at 11:26 pm:
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    Michele McQuigg has been extraordinarily helpful here. Far more helpful in giving guidance and helping me understand the legal protections in place to protect the confidentiality of jurors, and what information is available than I had imagined any court clerk could be. If you have any impression that she could be doing more or is not absolutely dedicated to doing her best, that impression would be entirely unfounded.

    She is very limited in what she can do and by what information she can release, based on court rulings and opinions of the Attorneys General over the years. She has been as responsive as possible, and explained in detail why in cases she couldn’t release information why she could not. We have to understand here her primary responsibility is ensuring the fair and efficient operation of the courts, and to that end her dedication is in my opinion beyond question.

    The other issue here is no one has apparently asked the questions I have posed, so there hasn’t been an opportunity for her to act on any of this. My investigation here is only in the earliest of stages and she hasn’t had an opportunity yet to evaluate the implications of the answers we’ve received from these inquiries. Any changes that might need to be made, and are within the authority of a clerk of the courts, will take some time to craft and implement. Don’t ever expect such complex questions to be solved overnight.

    To a great degree a clerk of the courts cannot do a whole lot. The General Assembly needs to potentially make some changes, not the clerk’s office. I am now in discussion with a few members of the House to see what opportunities there are, which is somewhat hampered by having the deadline for filing bills expire before most of this information became available.

    Stay tuned for more, as this is still developing. So far we’ve just established that a problem exists, and have only begun to explore options to fix those problems. We may get a fix or two this session, and perhaps we will have to wait another year.

    If this is of concern to you, and I think it should be, you need to contact your Delegate and Senator as they really are the ones in the position to fix some of the problems that a clerk of the court could then implement.

  5. Maureen said on 14 Jan 2011 at 5:33 am:
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    There are a couple bills in the GA that deal with voter identification. Will post later

  6. Jaspar said on 14 Jan 2011 at 9:46 am:
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    I surmise all 24 individuals voted Democrap!

  7. Anonymouse said on 14 Jan 2011 at 12:02 pm:
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    I am a legal resident (green card) holder, as my now-driving age children who immigrated with me.

    We continually have voter registration forms pushed on us by the DMV every time we go to change a registration, complete a renewal, etc.

    When I asked why, since it is apparent we are not citizens, I am told it is DMV policy. It appears it is only personal ethics that prevents wide spread fraud, since there is no retribution for falsely registering to vote and voting. There may be on the books, but have you ever heard of a case being prosecuted in VA or anywhere else, for that matter??

    Beyond silly.

    Hope the citizens of VA employ common sense and close the loophole — and prosecute those who falsely register to send a message.

  8. Robert L. Duecaster said on 14 Jan 2011 at 2:09 pm:
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    “Hope the citizens of VA employ common sense and close the loophole — and prosecute those who falsely register to send a message.”

    That day may be approaching, Anonymouse.

  9. Jack Slimp said on 14 Jan 2011 at 4:58 pm:
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    I believe the juror lists are compiled from more than the registered voter list, e.g., DMV and Post Office.

    Also, note per http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10096.html:
    Generally, only noncitizens authorized to work in the United States by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) can get a Social Security number. Social Security numbers are used to report an individual’s wages to the government and to determine a person’s eligibility for Social Security benefits. You need a Social Security number to work, collect Social Security benefits and receive some other government services.

    It would be extremely difficult (next to impossible) for illegals or non-citizens to be registered to vote in Virginia. Social security numbers must be provided on the application, and they are validated by the state on a monthly basis. Non-citizens who do manage to be issued a SS# get a number that identifies them as a non-citizen.

    Jack Slimp
    Chairman, Electoral Board
    City of Manassas

  10. Anonymous said on 14 Jan 2011 at 10:26 pm:
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    I understand that the problem may be a broad one, but I still don’t understand why McQuigg cannot simply turn over to the police for investigation the names of the individuals who were not citizens to have them check the voter roles. If not that, did she turn the names over to the Registrar to make sure they were stricken from the voter lists? Seems like you are going awfully easy on her Greg. Why? Remember, it was her “diligence” on the credentials committee that helped Faisal Gill get nominated. I’m not suggesting you criticize her publicly here, just pressure her to do her job. If this were someone in the County government we would be all over them. Why treat McQuigg with kid gloves?

  11. Greg L said on 14 Jan 2011 at 11:18 pm:
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    I’ve contacted a lot of agencies, and rarely have I seen the level of assistance from any of them approach what Michele McQuigg has been providing. When I got rocks to throw, I throw them, and she’s been a target before. When I have kudos to offer, I do, and in this case she’s earned them.

    I fully expect that the discussions I’ve had with her office may prompt some changes, but the clerk’s office is very limited in what they can do by Virginia Code, federal law, and AG opinions. They’re protecting the integrity of the jury pool here which is arguably a higher priority than worrying about a couple dozen fraudulent voter registrations. We compromise the jury system here because we weren’t careful and we’ve caused irreparable harm to real people and damaged the administration of justice, and we’ve caused more problems than we’ve solved. This is worth being careful and deliberate with.

    I really believe that clerks need better tools, or better authority in this case, and I’m talking to members of the General Assembly about making sure they get them (and the right ones). Those discussions are happening. I wish government could turn on a dime sometimes, but that just doesn’t happen. If you legislate in haste, you litigate at leisure, and that’s not what anyone wants here.

    Talk to your representatives in the House and Senate about this. They really are in a position to help, they’re in session right now, and they need to hear from you about your concerns.

  12. Doug Brown said on 14 Jan 2011 at 11:27 pm:
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    Jack Slimp
    Chairman, Electoral Board
    City of Manassas

    Stated:

    “Non-citizens who do manage to be issued a SS# get a number that identifies them as a non-citizen.”

    Mr. Slimp,

    When the non-citizen becomes a citizen then does he then apply for a citizen SS#?

  13. AmericaFirst said on 15 Jan 2011 at 6:28 am:
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    I believe the juror lists are compiled from more than the registered voter list, e.g., DMV and Post Office.

    You are the chair of the electoral board and you don’t KNOW?

    It would be extremely difficult (next to impossible) for illegals or non-citizens to be registered to vote in Virginia.

    Right. According to our laws, it should be extremely difficult (next to impossible) for them to work here and receive our tax dollars.

    According to our laws, it should be extremely difficult(next to impossible) for these sleazeballs to hire them and steal jobs from Americans.

    According to our laws, it should be extremely difficult(next to impossible) for the the illegals to be on our highways, driving crapboxes which they always seem to get registered and inspected, drunk out of their minds and killing our citizens.

    Get a clue, Mr Slimp - and get out of our government.

  14. Steve Thomas said on 15 Jan 2011 at 7:59 am:
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    Greg,

    First-rate investigative reporting here. I agree with your sentiments. We need to determine what the root-cause of this problem is, before it grows into a bigger problem. Clearly, Michelle McQuigg is not the root-cause of the problem, and has demonstrated her concerns for balancing the need to protect the integrity of the jury pool. Due to her position, this should be her primary concern. Still, in assisting you with gathering the information that you need, she has also demonstrated her concerns for protecting the integrity of the electoral process as well.

    It would appear that the bug in the system is a flawed policy at the DMV. Considering they are required by motor-voter law to offer voter registration to ELIGIBLE voters, a policy would/should be the answer. I would imagine that one or two of our local representatives would be happy to take a bill foward to compel DMV to enact a policy of verifiying eligibility first, and only then providing the voter registration services. I would think this much more productive than bashing the Clerk of Court.

  15. Anonymous said on 15 Jan 2011 at 9:27 am:
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    TO: Anonymouse said on 14 Jan 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Thank you for your honesty and ethics!

  16. George S. Harris said on 15 Jan 2011 at 11:30 am:
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    Is anyone on here aware that you can register online? If you don’t believe me, then go here:

    http://www.sbe.virginia.gov/cms/documents/VoterRegistration/sbe_voter_app_DOJ-Printed.pdf

    Note that you don’t have to show “legal presence” to register. A current utility bill or a bank statement will do the trick. Of course, you do have to check that A. You are a U.S. citizen and B. You are a resident of Virginia. Of course, you are required to show identification when you vote.

    If you are looking for a scapegoat–it ain’t Michelle McQuigg and it ain’t DMV. It’s a system issue.

    Remember these numbers: Prince William County had 226,396 registered voters on 31 December 2010. Generally about 40% of voters turn out for off year elections–no figures on the State Board of Elections website for 2010 yet–so some 90,558 people MIGHT vote off year. If .0296% shouldn’t be voting because they aren’t citizens then that MIGHT be something like 268 people.

    In some unspecified year according to Greg, four people have asked to be excused from jury duty because they weren’t citizens.

    Some 6% (5.96%) of registered voters are picked for jury duty. Perhaps 24 might asked to be excused because they aren’t citizens. We have been averaging a little over 4 per year.

    Your bank makes bigger round off errors and so do you–every day.

  17. Doug Brown said on 15 Jan 2011 at 11:52 am:
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    Steve Thomas said:

    “It would appear that the bug in the system is a flawed policy at the DMV. Considering they are required by motor-voter law to offer voter registration to ELIGIBLE voters, a policy would/should be the answer.”

    Steve,

    Mr. Slimp, the Chairman of the Manassas Electoral Board gave us the simple solution to this problem. DMV simply has to rule out those SS#s that are for noncitizens.

    Mr. Slimp,

    I would appreciate a response to my question. Thank you.

  18. Steve Thomas said on 15 Jan 2011 at 12:36 pm:
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    “Non-citizens who do manage to be issued a SS# get a number that identifies them as a non-citizen.”

    Jack,

    What happens in cases where the SSN# is valid, but stolen and used by someone else? Does the Registrar match names to SSN’s or just check to see if the SSN is a valid one?

  19. Doug Brown said on 15 Jan 2011 at 1:46 pm:
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    Steve,

    That is also an issue, but can we first let Mr. Slimp answer my question? Thanks.

    (This is related to the E-Verify collaboration between SSA and USCIS.)

  20. The Bulletproof Monk said on 15 Jan 2011 at 1:58 pm:
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    Mr. Anonymouse (I’ve inferred gender…I do apologize in advance for any assumption of gender.)
    Thank you for your posting. I’ve known for a long time that those who did it the legal way also have a problem with those who don’t even bother to inform themselves about legality.
    I (and I’m not alone here) welcome you to the Country and appreciate the talents that you and your family bring to our society. But most of all, thank you for your kind consideration of our laws. I’ll stand with you (as your case was presented here) anyday.

  21. Jack Slimp said on 16 Jan 2011 at 1:11 am:
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    Regarding, “When the non-citizen becomes a citizen then does he then apply for a citizen SS#?” No, that SS# is then recognized as a citizen’s #.

    Regarding the on-line application — that’s exactly what it is: an application. Note that the application requires name, address, and SS#. One is not officially registered to vote until the application is approved. If name, address, and SS# don’t match the State Board of Elections (SBE) database (which uses DMV and P.O. data to assist along with the SS# database), then the application is not approved unless whatever is the problem is favorably resolved for the applicant.

    To put things in perspective –

    • Illegals do not want to be identified as illegally here; ipso facto they will not knowingly register to vote lest they be idenitfied as a fraudulent voter as well as an illegal.

    • Legal non-citizens do not want to commit a fraudulent voting act, because they do not want to jeopardize their resident status here, so they also will not knowingly register to vote. And remember, the application asks if you are a US citizen.

    • Unfortunately, the motor voter law has the DMVs across the nation give everyone an opportunity to register, AND the form DMV uses is not the greatest on preventing accidental registration attempts. The wheels are turning to improve the form.

    • Some people who are not citizens have accidentally applied to register, but they don’t get registered, either because they checked they weren’t a citizen or because name, address, and SS# don’t match the SBE database.

    • The Clerk of the Court does not get names merely from the list of registered voters; some citizens choose not to register to vote. Perhaps the Clerk of the Court gets names from all who’ve submitted applications via the DMV — I don’t know. But if that’s so, realize that would be data from an application, not data of a registered voter.

    • The Clerk of the Court has essentially nothing to do with approving voter registration applications or purging voter registration applications and the voter registration database.

    • The Electoral Board and Registrar’s Office are not responsible for the operation of the Clerk of the Court.

    Virginia, BTW, has one of the tightest and best election systems in the nation.

    Okay, all that being said, the system is not perfect. Can it ever be perfect? Perhaps if everybody could agree on the description of perfection. But no matter what system you have, there is always potential for human error. We continually strive to be better.

    SBE continues to strive for the best. One handicap in the system is no live access to the national SS# database, but hopefully that will be attained.

    Jack Slimp
    Chairman, Electoral Board
    City of Manassas

  22. AmericaFirst said on 16 Jan 2011 at 2:26 am:
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    Unfortunately, the motor voter law has the DMVs across the nation give everyone an opportunity to register, AND the form DMV uses is not the greatest on preventing accidental registration attempts. The wheels are turning to improve the form

    Just how long does it take for the “wheels to turn”?

    Till you check out with full retirement?

    How bout you get it done this year and then report back either with the specific names of those who blocked it - or your registration.

    In the gentle, healing, uniting words of our president, we need to know whose ass to kick.

  23. Jack Slimp said on 17 Jan 2011 at 1:18 am:
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    More perspective ——–

    Electoral Board Members (there are 3 for every jurisdiction), are not full-time. They are democrat and republican political appointees whose names have been submitted to a judge for approval and after which are sworn in by the Clerk of the Court. The Electoral Board hires the General Registrar who operates the Voter Registration office full time with a small staff. The Electoral Board operates independently from the City Council or Board of Supervisors. The Electoral Board assumes the ultimate responsibility for its jurisdiction’s elections. The Electoral Board, however, has no authority to deviate from or change the election laws enacted by the state legislature. The Electoral Board has no authority to direct the actions or policies of the DMV.

    The State Board of Elections (SBE) sets election policy and guidelines based on the election laws. The SBE board members include a Chairman, Vice-Chair, and Secretary. The Secretary is, in essence, the COO and runs a full time office and staff. The SBE oversees the entire state’s elections and election process. The SBE deals directly with the Governor and the SBE has authority to deal with other state organizations such as the DMV. The SBE deals directly with the Electoral Boards and the General Registrars.

    The SBE as well as the Virginia Electoral Board Association (VEBA) lobby the legislators and submit bills to be enacted.

    Everything has to conform with Federal Laws and the demands of the Justice Department. Sometimes the Fed is the fly in the ointment.

    There is an inch thick handbook of Virginia election laws, and probably 12 inches of policies and procedures.

    Again, an applicant who registers to be a voter is approved only if everything checks out.

  24. Doug Brown said on 17 Jan 2011 at 3:09 pm:
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    Mr. Slimp,

    Thank you responding and for joining this thread. Your willingness to do so shows the electoral board here in Manassas is committed to maintaining the faith of the citizens in the integrity of our elections. I dont’ think that is always the case in the rest of the country or the Commonwealth.

    As for my own question I guess I was in a little too much of a hurry to get out of the house and get down to Staunton and the American Shakespeare Center for a show Saturday night. I thought your were implying that there was some kind of marker within the numbers of non-citizens SS#s that you could identify and I thought - wow, that would be wild and pretty much impossible within the specific numbers of the SS#s. On the other hand, I thought maybe you were giving me the answer to one little issue I ran up against in my work on this subject: a few years ago a USCIS service center in MO was issuing SS#s to non-citizens that were five years out and it was driving some people here in DC and elsewhere a little nuts. When I was driving down to Staunton and going over your post in my head I realized what you had said was perfectly plausible, so… much to do about nothing. :)

    The show I saw? The Comedy of Errors. Which also seems appropriate whenever the issue of immigration and illegals come up.

    (BTW, Virginia should be really very proud of the ASC in Stauton, I’ve seen Shakespeare plays in England, Canada, and various places in the US and the Staunton production was excellent, some great performances.)

  25. AmericaFirst said on 18 Jan 2011 at 6:46 am:
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    Can someone tell us what is wrong with citizens going to the registrar, proving who they are and registering to vote?

    Worked for how many decades?

    Lets face it, motor voter was designed for one purpose and that was to facilitate fraudulent voting.

    Motor voter makes fraudulent voting easy.

    Registering at the registrar prevented it.

    It does not go unnoticed that moter voter and the effort to prevent showing of ids at the polling place go neatly hand in hand.

  26. Doug Brown said on 18 Jan 2011 at 3:42 pm:
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    @AmericaFirst

    I agree with you on the commonsense notion that one would be required to go to the registrar’s office to register to vote.

    I know some people would like to believe the voting system in this country is flawed but essentially sound, but the fact is targeted fraud can be highly effective, since naval aviators have been a recent subject of interest lately here, you might enjoy this link where voting fraud can be so bad even the Dems are ‘victims.’ Or maybe they just don’t like naval aviators?

    http://www.cashill.com/natl_general/will_somali.htm

  27. George S. Harris said on 19 Jan 2011 at 6:34 pm:
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    2 Doug Brown–if this story is true, why didn’t someone object at the time the voting was taking place? Duh!!!!!!!!

  28. George S. Harris said on 19 Jan 2011 at 6:35 pm:
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    I still think that people agreeing with Greg on this issue are just plain DUMB or maybe brain dead.

  29. Doug Brown said on 19 Jan 2011 at 11:45 pm:
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    Mr. Harris,

    Gee, I don’t know why doesn’t superman show up everytime a crime or some kind of illegal activity happens?

    Did you read the story? The irregularity of the incident was noted at the time. Did you read the follow-up?

    I know for a fact that the Somali community in this area is milking the social services dry. They’ve been imported to vote and they will vote according to how they are instructed by their patrons. The public dole just happens to be the means by which they are getting paid, handsomely I might add. Is it really that different from how many other immigrant groups were ushered into the American political process?

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