A new investigation into the record-keeping of 100 key 2020 battleground counties found that nearly all threw out or mishandled voting documentation they are supposed to keep for 22 months in case an audit is called.
Instead of complying with the 22-month requirement spelled out in the Civil Rights Act of 1960, 94 counties reported that they did not keep or sloppily handled information showing the vote.
As a result, it is impossible to get the number of ballots to equal the number of those who voted, in some cases leaving huge gaps.
“One of the most basic ways to ensure election transparency is to verify if the number of votes counted equals the number of people listed as voting,” said a new report from Trump-aligned America First Policy Institute.
“Of the 100 total counties, only six counties properly retained the voter files from the 2020 general election,” said the report, which was written by Steven Smith, AFPI’s chief of staff, and John Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center.
The report was aimed at encouraging better vote record keeping in federal level elections, not to add fuel to any attempt to overturn the 2020 election.
While not accusing anyone of being hanky-panky with the votes, the reports raised significant questions about gaps between votes received and those who voted, in some cases enough possibly to change election results. It also gave examples of other improperly handled information in some states, including the trashing of videos taken during vote-counting.
Even in the six counties that kept the data, the average “discrepancy” between the number of people voting and the number of ballots cast was 2.8%, the highest being 8.8% in Georgia’s Cobb County.
In presenting the report in the Federalist, the duo wrote, “Cobb County, Georgia, had a massive discrepancy of 34,893 votes, or 8.8%. All but one of the precincts had more ballots cast than voters. The gap was more than two and half times the 13,471 votes Republican David Perdue fell short of winning in Georgia’s first round Senate race in November 2020.”
They added, “That gap, in a county that President Joe Biden carried by 14 percentage points, was three times President Biden’s winning margin in Georgia in 2020.”
After presenting the report to Ohio and West Virginia officials, those states moved to require that federal-level voting information be kept for 22 months, as required by the 1960 act.
“If we can address and enforce the Civil Rights Act of 1960’s data retention requirements, we will be able to help restore confidence in our system,” they added. “Americans could see a clear picture of who voted (not how they voted) in the general election, and any discrepancy could quickly and easily be addressed or investigated. Doing so will ensure it is easy to vote in America but harder to cheat.”
Reporting from The Washington Examiner.