ICYMI: Ohio Capital Journal: Ohio Auditor Floats Theory of Election Fraud
October 20, 2022
Columbus, OH — In case you missed it, the Ohio Capital Journal reported today on the latest election lies being perpetrated by the Ohio Republican Party, this time from Auditor Keith Faber. At a Westerville Tea Party event last week, Faber floated a bizarre conspiracy theory that Ohio County Boards of Elections might use “special paper” to produce fake ballots to swing elections, trying to act tough when asked about auditing elections. It’s just the latest in a long line of election lies being told by Republicans running for office in Ohio as they try to ingratiate themselves with MAGA Republicans to further their own political ambitions.
“Faber’s staff was also asked whether he had any reason to suspect that Cuyahoga County — the most racially and ethnically diverse in Ohio — had or was planning to sneak voting-machine paper out of state for use in fraudulent voting. The communications staff didn’t address that question. Nor did it address whether there was any evidence that the kind of voting fraud Faber described had ever been done anywhere in the United States,” writes Marty Schladen for the Ohio Capital Journal.
“Add Keith Faber to the list of GOP politicians who are pandering to MAGA Republicans and dabbling in conspiracy theories in order to further their own political ambitions. Keith Faber knows better, but is more focused on shamefully clinging to power than being honest with the voters of Ohio,” said Ohio Democratic Party spokesperson Matt Keyes.
Read more from the Ohio Capital Journal here and below:
- But that didn’t stop him from holding out a sinister possibility: that the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections might be diverting special voting-machine paper to other states where unscrupulous elements might use them to produce unsolicited, fraudulent ballots.
- For his part, the director of the board of elections there said his office was doing no such thing and that the state auditor’s office had never contacted his agency about the matter.
- With Republicans holding all statewide offices except the U.S. Senate seat occupied by Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, officials like Faber are in a tight spot when it comes to election fraud.
- Former President Donald Trump continues to falsely claim that he was cheated out of the presidency in 2020 by a rigged election. And now, other Republican candidates are mimicking his past behavior by refusing to say whether they’ll accept the results if they lose on Nov. 8.
- Experts say such talk is crippling our democracy by undermining faith in its most basic process. Indeed, about 70% of Republicans believe the 2020 presidential election was rigged despite Trump’s epic failure to produce any evidence of that.
- So Ohio’s elected Republicans have a base that’s deeply skeptical of elections at the same time that those officials are running them.
- Secretary of State Frank LaRose, the official responsible for administering elections, has hyped the possibility of cheating while simultaneously touting how extremely rare it’s been in elections he’s run. In February, LaRose slammed the media for supposedly downplaying voter fraud just after he found just the possibility of one fraudulent vote for every 222,000 cast in Ohio in 2020.
- Faber, the state auditor, seemed to be trying to take a similar tack last week when a member of the Tea Party audience asked him if he audited elections.
- “What I found out is the paper, the paper we use to vote in Ohio, OK, is special paper,” he said. “You need special paper to run the machines. But there really wasn’t ever any inventory done on the paper, OK? And so that supply if you audit that, we’re going to start doing a count. If you ordered 100 (thousand) sheets of paper and you only voted 20,000 people, you better have 80,000 sheets left.”
- He added, “And so we started asking those questions. And I wasn’t really worried because of the difficulty in Ohio of creating extra fake ballots because of the controls. But there was nothing to say the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections who ordered a million sheets of paper didn’t somehow quietly drop off 50,000 of them over here in (another state.) Because the paper is the same from machine to machine and state to state and so we started asking those questions. And I talked to a number of people at local boards of elections and said if you’re going to cheat, what would you do? And so we started looking at that. So the short answer is no. I don’t audit the election.”
- Faber’s staff was also asked whether he had any reason to suspect that Cuyahoga County — the most racially and ethnically diverse in Ohio — had or was planning to sneak voting-machine paper out of state for use in fraudulent voting.
- The communications staff didn’t address that question. Nor did it address whether there was any evidence that the kind of voting fraud Faber described had ever been done anywhere in the United States.
- Asked if Faber’s office contacted the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections to learn how it uses ballot stock, Perlatti said, “No. We really, from an elections standpoint, we really don’t have much interaction at all with the auditor’s office. The auditor’s office comes in more so with county in general on things like payroll and county procurement.”