On Jan. 6, 2021, a mob of supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol. They sought to overturn the 2020 presidential election results by interrupting the Congressional count of electoral votes.

In this week’s newspaper, published a year later on Jan. 6, 2022, we reprint a review of voter fraud in the 2020 election compiled by The Associated Press (AP). Though the Herald is not an AP subscriber, AP agreed to allow weekly newspapers to publish the article free of charge at the request of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues.

After reviewing every potential instance of voter fraud in the six battleground states of Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin in the 2020 election, AP found less than 475 cases. This number, even if all disputed ballots had been cast for Trump, would not have changed the outcome of the 2020 election.

Some of the aforementioned states, such as Georgia and Wisconsin, are still reviewing potential cases of electoral fraud from the election. Georgia currently has 20 cases of electoral fraud under review; Wisconsin has five.

Other states have already doled out charges. Arizona charged nine people with voting fraud crimes in association with the election; Michigan charged three.

All in all, AP found no evidence of widespread collusion to rig voting across the six states. The cases of voter fraud reviewed by AP were linked to individuals acting as sole players, such as: a Pennsylvania man who voted on behalf of his son; an Arizona woman suspected of sending a ballot for her deceased mother; a man from Wisconsin who thought he could vote on parol; and a man from Michigan who filled out his daughter’s ballot while she was at college.

AP’s review relied on information collected from roughly 340 local election offices across the six states, offices that are required by law to reconcile ballots and account for discrepancies after an election concludes. As the Lake County Clerk and Recorder’s Office will tell you, this is a complex and painstaking process that can take days, months or sometimes years to complete.

AP’s excellent reporting has further verified that there was no systemic effort to commit voter fraud in the 2020 election. It also reminds us that voter fraud is exceptionally rare in the United States.

Best Of

Voting is now underway in the Herald’s 2021 Best Of Leadville & Twin Lakes competition. Though voting has taken place in February in past years, we decided to move this year’s competition up to January to align with the newspaper’s Year in Review spread.

We also changed the survey’s contents. After hearing various complaints that the survey was too long, we decided to substantially cut back on categories this year. We hope you will find the 2021 survey refreshing and fun — not laborious.

Participants can vote by hand on ballot forms appearing in the Jan. 6, 13 and 20 issues or online at www.leadvilleherald.com. Votes must be submitted by Friday, Jan. 28. And please, vote once only.

Rachel Woolworth

Herald Editor

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