Voter Impersonation Fraud Confirmed in NC (But Not Prosecuted).

April 28, 2017 — Tim from New York wrote us today:

Dear VoteChecker…

What are your thoughts on David Learner not bringing charges against the 67 year old woman in NC who voted on behalf of her mom.  Should charges have been brought?

District Attorney, David Learner, a Republican DA from Burke County, NC, opted not to prosecute a 67-year-old woman who voted twice by using her recently deceased mother’s registration. (Picture courtesy of Facebook.)

Hi Tim.

Thanks for asking. I need to start my answer with some background information about prosecutors in North Carolina.

In 2013, we found an 80-something-year-old Goldsboro man who had voted in both Florida and North Carolina in 2004, 2008 and 2012. We turned our evidence over to the State Board of Elections (SBOE). They agreed with our findings and referred the 2012 case to the Wayne County District Attorney for prosecution. A trusted source told us that somebody from that DA’s office called the man and spoke with his son, who brushed it off, claiming his dad was senile.

Though the pattern of fraud over 12 years might have impeached any senility claim, the DA only had physical evidence for the 2012 criminal act. Prosecuting the prior two elections isn’t possible without physical evidence, and NC’s fraud-friendly election laws make sure that such evidence is destroyed after 22 months. I would like to have seen him press the perpetrator for a plea to a lower charge, but that couldn’t happen. Besides, nobody wants to prosecute an 80-year-old man.

Joking aside, double voting by that man or voter impersonation by the 67-year-old woman are only a Class I (as in the letter below H) Felony. Such a low valuation by the Legislature discourages DAs from wasting their time and money prosecuting the case. Unless she had a prior criminal record (which she did not), conviction of a Class I Felony in NC will never warrant jail time.

How it plays out…

As is the case with the 67-year-old lady, both perps would call for a jury trial and there is not a jury in the land that would convict her (after hearing her sad story) and that is what drives the DA to not even bother.

Unfortunately, such resignation on the part of the DA is our biggest problem. We suspect that in some counties, it runs deeper than just the optics of prosecuting a senior citizen. We’ve also learned that getting a Caucasian DA to prosecute vote fraud in a minority-majority district is another major factor. Such local politics has stymied the vast majority of our cases, even though the badge guys thoroughly investigated and made the criminal referrals.

This is why I throw my hands up when otherwise intelligent people make the circular claim that, “there is no vote fraud because there are no prosecutions.” The truth is there are no prosecutions because the politicians in Raleigh don’t want them. So, they classify the crime so low that District Attorneys get the message and don’t bother prosecuting them.

Lest we forget, stealing pine straw in North Carolina is a Class H felony, one step above vote fraud. So the politicians in our state think that stealing pine straw is a bigger crime than stealing an election. So, there will not be very many prosecutions.

Unless the Legislature raises the penalties, prevention is the only solution.

The bottom line is that the 67-year-old woman could not have committed the crime if North Carolina had a voter ID law on the books.