Terri Rote, a woman from Des Moines, Iowa, was seriously worried that the polls are rigged against Donald Trump. So she allegedly tried to vote twice for the Republican candidate for president.
“I wasn't planning on doing it twice. It was spur of the moment,” Rote told Iowa Public Radio. “The polls are rigged.”
If Rote is convicted, she faces up to five years in prison.
Two other people in Iowa are currently charged with voter fraud after they allegedly voted by mail and in person. But Rote is the only person arrested so far, according to the Des Moines Register.
The decision was seemingly motivated by Trump’s claims that the election is rigged against him, due to what Trump claims is “large scale voter fraud.” The evidence, in fact, shows that voter fraud is extremely rare.
Loyola Law School professor Justin Levitt has tracked credible allegations of in-person voter impersonation for years, finding 35 total credible allegations between 2000 and 2014, when more than 800 million ballots were cast in national general elections and hundreds of millions more were cast in primary, municipal, special, and other elections.
There are other kinds of potential voter fraud, such as vote buying, insider ballot box stuffing, double voting (what Rote allegedly tried), and voting by people who turn out to be ineligible. But all of these are also extremely rare, and there’s no evidence that they have swung national elections, according to experts (and even Breitbart, a pro-Trump outlet).
Yet Trump and other Republicans have stoked fears about voter fraud for years. Those fears loomed so large that Rote apparently decided to take matters into her own hands — and allegedly committed the exact crime she was so worried about.