As officials in North Carolina investigate possible voter fraud in last month’s election, 33 people have already been convicted of the crime in Texas this year, more than the state’s combined total for the previous five years.
Eight others accused of voter fraud in the state are awaiting resolution of their cases, which typically involve violations by small-time vote harvesters paid to collect absentee ballots.
The violations were generally in local, nonpartisan elections – such as those for school boards, and primaries of both parties – and are not tied to the well-funded, high-profile Texas race in which Sen. Ted Cruz defeated Democratic rising star Rep. Beto O'Rourke in November.
History shows that voter fraud has been part of elections in Texas for decades. And money, intimidation, skulduggery and misrepresentation have plagued elections in virtually every state.
In recent years Democrats and major media outlets have dismissed claims of significant voter fraud, including those by President Trump. But the disputed midterm outcome last month in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District – centering on allegedly illegal ballot harvesting for the Republican candidate and apparent winner – has put the issue at center stage of American politics.