FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 25, 2015
14 Individuals Referred for Investigation for Allegedly Illegally Voting
Secretary reminds Ohioans one vote matters, 75 races decided by one vote or tied
COLUMBUS – Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted today released the post-general election voter fraud report based on a review of cases by Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections and the Secretary of State’s office following the 2014 Gubernatorial Election. The report identified 42 irregularities with 14 individuals being referred for additional investigation or prosecution.
"The findings of this report demonstrate once again that voter fraud exists, it's rare and we are holding people accountable for their actions,” Secretary Husted said. “Voter fraud, no matter how rare, reduces the confidence in our system of elections and it can't be tolerated."
In January 2015, Secretary Husted issued Directive 2015-01, instructing all county boards of elections to adopt policies to review substantiated allegations of voter fraud or voter suppression. This is the state’s second voter fraud report, the first having been issued by Secretary Husted after the 2012 Presidential Election.
Additionally, Ohio again participated in a cross match program with other U.S. states in order to identify individuals who may have voted in more than one state’s elections. This found two individuals who allegedly cast a ballot in Ohio and other states, Kentucky and Illinois. Secretary Husted will refer these two cases to the Attorney General for further investigation and possible prosecution.
The additional 12 cases were identified by county boards of elections and referred to the proper county prosecutor. The board reports have turned up zero cases where a voter was denied a ballot and no referrals have been made as a result of voters claiming suppression.
It is important to note that every case of alleged fraud identified by the boards of elections that included a voter attempting to cast multiple ballots was thwarted and no potentially fraudulent ballots are suspected of deciding an election.
“This report shows that the systems we have in place to ensure fair and honest elections are working and Ohioans should rest assured that their vote matters,” added Secretary Husted. “Anyone who may attempt to cheat the system in Ohio should be warned: We will find you and we will hold you accountable.”
These efforts to ward off fraud and hold people accountable are important because every vote counts and a single vote can often change the outcome of an election. In fact, in the May 2015 Primary and Special Election alone, five outcomes across Ohio were decided by a single vote or tied. Seventy-five races have been decided by the same margin over the past two years.
For more information, please contact Joshua Eck at (614) 466-2729