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Election Integrity News Blog


HAVA, UOCAVA, and MOVE: Enforcing election laws as precious as Gold

Soros realized you don't have to change the laws; you just have to change how they are enforced. "It's life-changing," Musk warned.

by Elizabeth Dallam Ayoub | November 8, 2023

A few weeks ago Pennsylvania citizens instituted an administrative complaint in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for “HAVA violations in Pennsylvania’s UOCAVA voting.”

HAVA, the Help America Vote Act (Public Law 107-2252 of 2002) requires each state to verify the identities of individuals before the individual can become registered to vote. Anyone interested in making sure that elections here in the United States are safe and secure would be pleased with that provision of the law.

UOCAVA, the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Voting Act (PL 99-410 of 1986) was passed to provide a way for overseas citizens and uniformed military members, as well as their spouses or dependents who were eligible to vote, to cast a vote from overseas. Anyone interested in making sure that every citizen be given a right to cast a ballot for a United States election would be pleased with this law too.

MOVE, the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act (PL 111-84 of 2009) was passed to require states to send absentee ballots to UOCAVA voters at least 45 days before an election.

The Pennsylvania administrative complaint was filed because individuals who see fair elections in the United States as valuable as gold initiated it. Gold is only valuable when the dross is melted from it, and elections are the same way. Only when voting systems are free of the potential for corruption can we have confidence in their integrity.

Mining for Gold

Gold is one of our most precious metals, and its scarcity defines its worth. During the Gold Rush era of the U.S., miners in states such as Nevada, Montana, and California panned for gold, filling a pan full of matter from a river and shaking the sieve so the heavy particles of gold fell to the bottom and the lighter, less valuable materials would wash away. Only the valuable gold remained.

Most citizens of the United States might agree that one of the most valuable resources of our country is its structure to allow the voices of We the People to be heard through election. Our voice is our vote, so if the integrity of our elections is compromised, the United States runs the risk of devolving into what is called a banana republic, a politically unstable country where shyster dictators rise to power by stealing elections.

HAVA, UOCAVA, and MOVE: Golden nuggets

Each of the three federal laws described above is a golden nugget. HAVA made sure that all eligible citizens are given the opportunity to vote. UOCAVA enabled overseas military and citizens in foreign lands to cast ballots. MOVE took steps to ensure that overseas voters received their ballots in time to return it and have it counted.

While experts argue that each of these federal election laws have flaws and imperfections, their intent was to help ensure particulate-free election integrity. Each provision of each law should only enhance election integrity. The problem is particulates were mixed in with the gold.

In Penna the Department of State whose job it is to ensure that each citizen has one counted vote overlooked HAVA provisions. In Penna overseas voters are not required to provide valid identification. The golden protections of HAVA are mottled with mud.

Why this administrative complaint is important

Those who care about election integrity might be concerned to learn that while UOCAVA was put in place primarily for overseas citizens and members of the military, 73% of Pennsylvania UOCAVA voters were non-military, and 79% of their ballots were transmitted by email. With the process Penna’s Department of State follows in not requiring identification, what is left open is the ability for basically anyone who is overseas, who claims to be a Penna voter, to request (by email) a ballot and then to cast a voted ballot.

The PEW Initiative said this process creates an “extraordinary vulnerability,” and the Journal of Cybersecurity (16 February 2021) says that this method “greatly increases the risk of undetectable” failures in the voter security system.

Attorney Erick Kaardal, a partner in the law firm representing the case, Mohrman, Kaardal & Erickson, P.A., said, “It’s not too much to ask state officials to follow federal law.”

As Elon Musk said in his recent interview with Joe Rogan, billionaire George Soros (who by coincidence is reported to be the Democrat party’s largest funder) realized you don't have to change the laws; you just have to change how they are enforced. "It's life-changing," Musk warned.

Panning for gold is hard work; protecting and requiring election integrity is proving no less difficult.

Michigan Fair Elections and its numerous volunteers work to protect this most precious asset: Each eligible citizen has a right to cast one and have it counted. The concept simple. But protecting eligible ballots from ineligible ones requires considerable sluicing…and sleuthing. Might you be interested in protecting election integrity?

Elizabeth Dallam Ayoub serves as MFE’s director of communications. She started her career working for an international company, transitioned into teaching French and Latin while her children were young, and then became a Michigan attorney.


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