As Democrats across the nation push for mail-in voting leading up to the November general election, President Trump has announced his support to get rid of ballot harvesting.
Trump took to Twitter to rip ballot harvesting, warning voters that it is a process that is rampant with Fraud.
Trump also encouraged voters that getting rid of ballot harvesting is critical to having fair and honest elections in the United States.
What is vote harvesting?
It is a process that allows workers, including partisan activists who can tamper with votes, to collect absentee or mail-in ballots and drop them off at polling locations.
Critics argue that partisan activists sometimes tamper with ballots before dropping them off at the polling locations.
Because the actual voter doesn’t go to the poll and validate their vote with an ID, harvested votes have historically been at the center of political controversy.
More details on President Trump’s push against ballot harvesting below:
Though signs indicate that the spread of COVID-19 is slowing throughout the country, many Democrats are pushing for mail-in voting in November.
This would also include ballot harvesting.
However, both methods of voting make it easier for voter fraud and vote tampering to occur.
Voter ID and updated voter rolls are the best ways to make sure that only eligible voters participate in our elections.
Fox News has more on Trump's stance against ballot harvesting:
President Trump’s keeping up his full-court press against efforts by Democrats and even some Republicans to expand voting by mail and absentee ballot this November due to health threats from the coronavirus pandemic.
Taking to Twitter and typing in all caps, the president called on Tuesday to “GET RID OF BALLOT HARVESTING, IT IS RAMPANT WITH FRAUD. THE USA MUST HAVE VOTER I.D., THE ONLY WAY TO GET AN HONEST COUNT!”
Ballot harvesting – also known as vote harvesting – is political speak for a practice in which organized workers, activists, or volunteers collect absentee or mail-in ballots and drop them off at a polling location or election office. It’s legal in some states and illegal in others. The term – which carries a negative connotation – suggests voting improprieties or even election fraud.
Republicans claim that ballot harvesting in California in 2018 – where it was legal – helped Democrats sweep U.S. House races, and regain the majority in the chamber. But a case of ballot harvesting in a 2018 congressional race in North Carolina – where the practice was illegal – led to a new special election and charges against a Republican operative.
Meanwhile, in Nevada, Democrats now want to suspend ballot-harvesting prosecutions.
The tweet by the president comes a week after he argued at a daily Coronavirus Task Force press briefing at the White House that “mail-in voting is horrible. It’s corrupt.”
Trump then suggested that “you get thousands and thousands of people sitting in someone's living room signing ballots all over the place. … I think that mail-in voting is a terrible thing.” The president didn’t offer evidence to back up his claim that voting by mail is rampant with fraud and abuse.
The president’s comments follow a similar attack on voting by mail just days earlier, when he charged that “a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting.”
“It shouldn’t be mail-in voting," Trump added. "It should be: you go to a booth and you proudly display yourself. You don’t send it in the mail where people can pick up. All sorts of bad things can happen … by the time it gets in and is tabulated."
After the 2016 presidential election, Democrats accused Russia of tampering in the U.S. elections.
There were even some far left wing leaders who accused Trump of being an illegitimate president.
Yet after all the supposed concern around the integrity of the election, these same leaders are pushing for mail-in voting and ballot harvesting.
Nefarious forces would be able to tamper with votes in this way.
Republicans, on the other hand, insist that voter ID would ensure that only eligible voters are able to cast a vote, ensuring an honest election.
While voter manipulation is generally accepted to be "rare" occurances, most political observers agree that the mail voting system is more vulnarable than voting in person.
It is certainly more vulnerable than requiring voter ID.
Newsweek has more details on ballot harvesting and the opportunities for fraud that it can present:
After 3 years of investigating Russia, you would think that the Democrats would do everything possible to protect the integrity of our elections.
Ballot harvesting is the practice of workers or volunteers going to places of residences to collect early-voting or mail-in ballots and depositing them at official voting sites. This is designed to accommodate voters who have limited access to voting sites "because of geographic location, physical disabilities, or the burden of buying stamps," according to New York magazine.While ballot harvesting is not legal in all states, some people feel that given the current pandemic, it would be an invaluable tool to ensure the most vulnerable registered voters can vote while keeping safe at the same time.
Opponents say that ballot harvesting provides the opportunity of fraud as those who collect the votes can illegally influence voters, according to the Texas Tribune. What further complicates the practice is if workers are paid per ballot that they collect, which was legal in Texas prior to 2013.
However, it appears that they're fighting for mai-in voting and ballot harvesting, both of which present opportunities for voter fraud.
Now that President Trump has spoken out against the practice of ballot harvesting, perhaps the Republican party will solidify behind this effort.