Not News Yet: Over 1,000 Non-Citizens Registered to Vote in Just 8 VA Localities; 'Tip of Iceberg'

October 5th, 2016 4:30 PM

On Sunday, I posted on the saga of Andrew Spieles, a member of the Young Democrats at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia who admitted to submitting fraudulent voter registrations for 19 dead people, and the national press's virtually complete disinterest in covering the story.

Spieles' activities, which have gained the attention of but not yet prosecution by law enforcement, represent child's play in comparison to the horrible findings reported Friday by the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) and the Virginia Voter’s Alliance (VVA) after an investigation relating to only a small portion of the state's voter-registration rolls.

Some of PILF/VVA's key findings so far (emphasis "so far," for reasons which will be evident shortly; most bolds are mine; italics are theirs):

... Based on voting history records, large numbers of ineligible aliens are registering to vote and casting ballots. They are canceling out the valid votes of American citizens. In some Virginia jurisdictions, the number of people registered to vote exceeds the number of citizens eligible to vote. When the Justice Department has been told of aliens registering to vote and committing federal felonies, nothing is done.

Virginia state election officials are obstructing access to public records that reveal the extent to which non-citizens are participating in our elections. These obstructionist tactics have led to PILF and VVA obtaining data from only a handful of Virginia counties so far. But the information from a few counties demonstrates a massive problem. In our small sample of just eight Virginia counties who responded to our public inspection requests, we found 1046 aliens who registered to vote illegally.

... when the voting history of this small sample of alien registrants is examined, nearly 200 verified ballots were cast before they were removed from the rolls. Each one of them is likely a felony.

... In Virginia, like most states, there is no formal program for identifying non-citizen registrants. The Commonwealth formerly arranged to use the Federal Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) database to detect aliens, but vigorous use seems to have ended during the administration of Governor Terry McAuliffe. Most discoveries of non-citizens on the registration rolls are accidental or chance. What this means is that the number of registered non-citizens thus far identified by this investigation is just the “tip of the iceberg.” The true extent of the problem likely runs in the thousands, if not more. And it is not unique to Virginia.

... federal and state voter registration forms, which ask registrants to affirm their citizenship with nothing more than the check of a box. No documentary proof of citizenship must be shown. It is nothing more than an honor system, one that is unquestionably failing to keep non-citizens from voting. States that have tried to remedy this problem by asking registrants to prove their citizenship with documentary proof have uniformly been stonewalled by litigation brought by our own Department of Justice and legions of attorneys working with left-leaning voter groups committed to keeping ineligible voters on the rolls.

... Attempts by various states to require registrants to provide documentary proof of citizenship during registration for federal elections have been thwarted by lawsuits brought by left-leaning voter groups and the Department of Justice. Virginia therefore requires applicants to merely check a box in order to “prove” their citizenship status.

... Like Virginia’s state registration form, the Federal (voter registration) Form requires only that a registrant check a box to “prove” his or her citizenship.

... (US) Justice Department officials are aware of corrupted voter rolls, but their politics prevent them from doing the right thing.

Here are a few out of very many specifics concerning the saga of orchestrated obstruction by Virginia state and local officials:

The election officials in charge of these jurisdictions were sometimes responsive, at first. Prince William County provided a list of 433 non-citizens who had registered to vote in the county, but were then removed after they were determined to not be U.S. citizens.

... We received no records showing that election officials had referred any non-citizen voters for investigation or prosecution.

... (After getting much smaller lists of non-citizen registration cancellations from two other counties) production of records required to be released effectively stopped. Over the course of August and September 2016, responses from election officials rolled in, each one explaining that state election officials had instructed them not to provide lists of non-citizens who had been removed from Virginia’s voter rolls.

The responses were nearly identical and soon it became clear that they were orchestrated by Edgardo Cortes, the Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Elections, and an appointee of Governor McAuliffe. According to numerous county election officials, Commissioner Cortes had issued guidance to them, instructing them not to respond to our requests for records pertaining to non-citizen voters.

You see, Cortes, kind person that he is (that's sarcasm, folks), wants to consolidate the reporting of all cancelled registrations into a statewide report which will not disclose the reason for the cancellation, effectively destroying the evidentiary paper trail.


... State election officials are preventing public access not only to records showing the number of non-citizens who have successfully registered to vote, but also records showing how many of them voted prior to being removed from the registration rolls.

... Commissioner Cortes refused to provide a list of non-citizens who have been purged from the registration list in each jurisdiction. He likewise refused to provide the voting history of purged non-citizens, reiterating his position that such information is not subject to release under the NVRA’s public inspection provision, but is available only to “qualified entities” under limited circumstances.

So who is Commissioner Edgardo Cortes?

... Before he was picked by Governor McAuliffe, he worked at the Advancement Project, an organization strongly opposed to using citizenship verification tools such as the federal SAVE database.

What is the Advancement Project?

It describes itself as "a next generation, multi-racial civil rights organization" dedicated to "helping organized communities of color dismantle and reform the unjust and inequitable policies that undermine the promise of democracy." As seen here (see the photo), they're okay with being associated with the violent Black Lives Matter movement.

Should that association with Black Lives Matter be surprising? No.

Breitbart reports the following:

Before his appointment by Democratic Gov. Terence McAuliffe, Cortés was a left-wing operative of Virginia Voting Rights Restoration Campaign, within the left-wing Advancement Project. The project was funded and supported by George Soros, through his Tides Foundation and Open Society Foundations.

Soros-related organizations have poured millions of dollars into the Ferguson, Missouri "protest" and other related efforts in which Black Lives Matter has played a visible, destructive role.

Once again, as reported last week in a post on the situation in the State of Washington, we see confirmation that elections in the U.S. have largely devolved to the point where they essentially function on the "honor system." It should be more than obvious that elections are far too important to be conducted on the "honor system" when there is so much to gained by acting dishonorably.

Following up further on Sunday's post on Andrew Spieles, a commenter there ("grainbirds") noted that the Associated Press, which I found did not include the story at its national site, did prepare an unbylined local dispatch which did not name Spieles or HarrisonburgVotes, the group for whom he was a "lead organizer" when he created 19 phony registrations. With all the stories about "rigged" Democratic Party primaries and concerns about the integrity of this year's general election, the decision to keep that story out of national visibility seems hard to justify.

It is infinitely harder to justify the press failing to give proper attention to the scandalous situation in Virginia's elections system and the obvious efforts to obstruct legal inquiries into it. But an early Tuesday afternoon Google News search free of relevant establishment press-sourced results and related searches at the Associated Press and the New York Times returning nothing relevant show no indication of "mainstream media" interest since the PILF/VVA report's Friday release.

On Sunday, I noted the Washington Post offered a blog post by reporter Laura Vozzella on September 29. There's another piece dated Wednesday by Nick Anderson. The Post won't name the offender: "Efforts to contact the student through email and telephone messages were unsuccessful, and The Washington Post is not identifying him because he has not been charged with a crime."

If form holds, we're going to see some combination of failure to cover, lame excuses, or accusations of racism and discrimination for even bringing up the topic, because the press has for years had a seemingly steely determination to keep news about registration fraud and voter fraud as invisible as possible.

Meanwhile, Michael Nadler at American Thinker has written, "The election is being stolen right before our eyes." Actually, it would appear that the use of past tense is justified in the case of the 2013 Virginia Attorney General race, when Democrat Mark Herring defeated Republican Mark Obenshain by only 156 votes.

Is all of this not news only because the press is content with who's conducting the theft?

Cross-posted at