By Stephen Gordon
On February 10, 2017, Democratic Federal Elections Commissioner Ellen Weintraub challenged President Trump to provide evidence of voter fraud in New Hampshire. Veritas has been releasing videos for years exposing the willingness of multiple campaigns to commit voter fraud, vulnerabilities in our election system and other FEC violations.
Ms. Weintraub wrote:
According to widespread news reports circulating today, President Trump has alleged an astonishing voter-fraud scheme that he claims denied him and former Sen. Kelly Ayotte victory in the state of New Hampshire in the 2016 elections. The scheme the President of the United States alleges would constitute thousands of felony criminal offenses under New Hampshire law. As a Commissioner on the Federal Election Commission, I am acutely aware that our democracy rests on the faith of the American people in the integrity of their elections. The President has issued an extraordinarily serious and specific charge. Allegations of this magnitude cannot be ignored. I therefore call upon President Trump to immediately share his evidence with the public and with the appropriate law-enforcement authorities so that his allegations may be investigated promptly and thoroughly.
Evidence strongly suggests that the FEC fails to find evidence of voter fraud and other voting irregularities because of their steadfast refusal to investigate such cases. In fact, Veritas has a long track record of releasing videos which expose many voting irregularities and has indeed shared the “evidence with the public and with the appropriate law-enforcement authorities so that his allegations may be investigated promptly and thoroughly.”
On September 1, 2015, Project Veritas Action released a video showing the Clinton campaign national marketing director accepting an illegal foreign donation, which was witnessed by the campaign’s national compliance manager. As a result of this piece of investigative journalism, the Stop Hillary PAC filed a complaint with the FEC (MUR 6962) on September 3, 2015. Aside from an acknowledgement letter assigning an MUR number, there has been no FEC action on this official complaint as of the writing of this article.
On February 25, 2016, Project Veritas Action released a video showing Australian nationals illegally assisting the Bernie Sanders campaign in New Hampshire. Following the release of the undercover footage, NH State Representative William O’Brien filed a complaint with the FEC (MUR 7035) dated March 15, 2016. As with the 2015 example, there has been no FEC action with this official complaint.
Beginning October 17, 2016, Project Veritas Action released their Democracy Partners series of videos which exposed voter fraud, astroturfed violence at Trump rallies, Clinton’s direct involvement in the process, and the flow of money between the DNC, Clinton campaign and other entities on the ground. Project Veritas Action Founder and President filed an FEC complaint (MUR 7157) regarding issues raised by this video series on October 20, 2016. Additionally, the Public Interest Legal Foundation filed a similar complaint. To date, there has been no FEC action regarding the Veritas complaint and the status of the Public Interest complaint is currently unknown.
In the complaints listed above, the FEC has had more than sufficient time to investigate the issues raised in the official complaints they acknowledge receiving. It’s clear that they have no intention to investigate issues which challenge the status quo.
Additionally, other Veritas videos have raised the specter of official inquiry from state-level government entities, but none of these seem to have resulted in any legitimate investigation.
In a different 2016 New Hampshire video released by Veritas, undercover journalists showed multiple election officials and Sanders campaign staffers offering advice to journalists using hidden cameras about how to circumvent the law to vote. In this case, out-of-state voters and non-residents were offered ballots in the presidential primary.
According to NH Assistant Attorney General Stephen LaBonte, the video “does portray some conduct that we are going to have to look at.”
Because of the lack of New Hampshire investigations into the damning footage Veritas had released, James O’Keefe conducted a news conference at the state capital on March 18, 2016 highlighting the issues disclosed in the videos and to turn the raw video over to Gov. Hassan so she could order an investigation. At the end of that press briefing, O’Keefe was unnecessarily served a subpoena by the state AG’s office to turn over the videos.
On February 12, 2017, Tony Schinella of the Concord Patch reported that no investigation has been conducted, despite the drama the state orchestrated by forcibly compelling O’Keefe to provide footage for which he was in state to voluntarily relinquish.
This sort of pretend investigation isn’t limited to New Hampshire, either.
In Nevada, Christina Gupana, an attorney working for the Clinton campaign, advised campaign workers on voter registration drives to do “whatever you can get away with, just do it” regarding voter registration. Immediately after the video was released, Gupana deleted all of her social media accounts and law practice website. She then disappeared from public sight. Nevada officials stated they were going to investigate the issues revealed in the Veritas video, but that investigation seems to have disappeared as completely as Gupana did.
Following the release of the Democracy Partners videos, Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel indicated that he might investigate voter fraud issues raised by Democratic dirty tricks operative Scott Foval, who had previously engaged in political activities in the state. While there was some communication between the AG’s office and Veritas, it does not appear that any official investigation was ever conducted.
Leading up to this 2016 elections, Veritas even caught a New York City election commissioner admitting that unregistered voters are bused around the city to vote multiple times in “certain neighborhoods in particular.”
Criminals don’t tend to volunteer information about their voting fraud activities to law enforcement agencies. If elections officials really wish to investigate voter fraud, they need dive deeper into whatever reasonable leads and tips they do receive, much like police officers do with crime tips. It’s easy to state there is no such thing as voter fraud when the proper investigatory authorities outright refuse to do their jobs.