This past summer, Donald Trump stated that the way to shore up America’s elections would be to switch to paper-only ballots and in-person voting. Democrats seized on that comment as proof that Trump was still spreading the “Big Lie” about the 2020 election. But wait a second… Didn’t every single elected Democrat in Congress support that exact same thing, right up until November 2, 2020? Why, yes, they did! But after the 2020 election, that legislation suddenly vanished faster than all the pie at the buffet after Jerrold Nadler waddles into the room.
That bill was the Securing America’s Federal Elections Act, otherwise known as the SAFE Act. The Democrats were so certain that Literally Big Orange Hitler was going to have Halliburton steal the 2020 election that they decided we needed a massive election overhaul in 2019. The SAFE Act was the bill that was going to save America. The House version was HR 2722, and the Senate version was S. 2238.
The bill called for all federal elections to use paper-only ballots. The Democrat sponsors and co-sponsors of the bill all said that electronic voting machines just can’t be trusted. They’re sneakily hooked to the internet, which obviously allows Putin to hack into the machines and flip votes in Donald Trump’s favor. Especially those Dominion Voting Systems machines, according to Senate sponsors (D-OR).
Wyden stated, “I fear the 2020 election will make 2016 look like small potatoes. The list of threats and vulnerabilities is enough to give you a migraine.”
Oh, do tell, Senator Wyden! Preach it!
Furthermore, the bill would have required all of those paper ballots to be counted by hand. No more running ballots through those counting machines made by the same untrustworthy companies! Those machines could be rigged to flip votes in favor of Donald Trump, said the bill’s sponsors. The SAFE Act would have basically eliminated ALL electronic voting and tabulating machines in all future federal elections – including the 2020 election – if they had passed the bill in time.
The bill also would have required all 50 states to conduct risk-limiting audits within the first year after the election, with the understanding that the findings of those audits could change the outcome of the election if fraud was discovered. According to the bill’s authors, this would be the only way to really reassure the American people that their elections were safe and secure. Audit every state! The bill would have provided extra election funding to every state in order to carry out those audits as each state saw fit. Mandatory election audits after every federal election?!
WHAT A BUNCH OF CONSPIRACY KOOKS! Everyone knows that election audits, paper-only ballots and hand counting undermines democracy, right?!
The House passed the SAFE Act late in 2019, with every elected Democrat voting in favor of these provisions. The vote was 225 to 184. The only Republican who voted in favor of it was Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL).
The bill started to pick up steam in the Senate after that. In addition to the bill’s sponsor, Amy Klobuchar, three other Senate Democrats who were running for president in 2020 co-sponsored the bill: Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Corey Booker (remember that guy?). Democracy was DOOMED unless America switched to paper-only ballots, hand counting and audits of the results in all 50 states before the 2020 election arrived.
The SAFE Act never made it out of committee in the Senate. It died on the vine.
But no matter. This happens frequently in Congress. If your bill doesn’t pass during one session, you just reintroduce it during the next session. The bill would likely pass this time around, since Democrats still control the House and have a razor-thin majority in the Senate. Curiously, all of the Democrats who were clamoring for paper ballots, hand counting of ballots, and risk-limiting audits in 2019 and 2020 have not reintroduced the SAFE Act this year.
Poof! It’s gone! Like magic! Or like the gravy boat at the buffet after Jerrold Nadler… okay, I’ll stop with the Nadler jokes. For now.
Ron Wyden has been fighting to eliminate electronic voting machines for YEARS. He still believes Halliburton stole the 2004 election for George Bush, and he doesn’t trust electronic voting machines at all. But he hasn’t reintroduced the SAFE Act this year. Zoe Lofgren hasn’t reintroduced her version in the House, either.
Someone should ask them why they had a change of heart.