Update: On May 11, 2017, the White House indicated President Trump would sign an executive order establishing a commission to review alleged voter fraud and vote suppression in the American election system. Read our statement here.
President Donald Trump announced this morning he will be asking for a major investigation into voter fraud, which he believes should address 3-5 million people voting illegally. Studies conducted on both sides of the political aisle have proven there is no evidence of widespread fraud and both Republicans and Democrats have outwardly stated this is not a problem in our democracy.
In fact, the Center for Election Innovation and Research has said that a person is more likely to be eaten by a shark that simultaneously gets hit by lightning than to find a non-citizen voting.
Below is a compilation of statements, academic-commissioned studies and government-commission studies that have proven time and time again that voter fraud is extremely rare.
Statements from Republicans countering President Trump’s false claims:
- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, "There's no evidence that [voter fraud] occurred in such a significant number that would have changed the presidential election, and I don't think we ought to spend any federal money investigating that."
- House Speaker Paul D. Ryan told reporters Tuesday he’s seen no evidence to buttress what Trump said.
- President Trump’s own lawyer filed a complaint in Pennsylvania stating “There is no evidence – or even an allegation – that any tampering with Pennsylvania’s voting systems occurred.”
- In response to the voter fraud claims, Senator John McCain said, “There’s no evidence of that and I think that those who allege that have to come up with some substantiation.”
- South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said “If the President of the United States is claiming 3.5 million people voted illegally, that shakes confidence in our democracy.”
Studies and investigations by the Left and Right countering President Trump’s false voter fraud claims:
- A 2014 comprehensive study by the Brennan Center for Justice found there were only 31 credible allegations of fraud over 1 billion votes cast. In fact, far more legal citizens have been rejected at the polls for lacking proper identification.
- A November 2014 study released by the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) conducted a review of five studies and "identified few instances of in-person fraud."
- A study published in 2013 by John Ahlquist and Kenneth R. Mayer of the University of Wisconsin and Simon Jackman of Stanford conducted a survey to measure the prevalence of two specific types of voter fraud: repeat/fraudulent ballot casting and vote buying. They found that “the notion that voter impersonation is a widespread behavior is totally contradicted by these data.”
- Government investigations have revealed no threat in Iowa, Wisconsin, Kansas and North Carolina. Also, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted said the state conducted a review four years ago, and it refutes the President’s assessment of widespread voter fraud.
- During the George W. Bush administration, the Justice Department turned up “virtually no evidence of voter fraud,” according to the New York Times. The study was a five-year examination and it only turned up 26 examples of fraud by individual voters.
- The Republican National Lawyers Association (RNLA) produced data showing voting records from 2000-2010, which show no link between voter fraud in states and the need for stricter voter ID laws.