Lankford Defends Americans’ Questions Regarding Election Fraud
CLICK HERE to watch Lankford’s Q&A.
WASHINGTON, DC – Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today participated in a hearing of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee entitled, “Examining Irregularities in the 2020 Election.” The Committee discussed the several irregularities in the 2020 election and how states can protect against election fraud moving forward.
Lankford has discussed the need for states to secure their elections for several years and being the only member to lead in an effort to secure the cyber integrity of US elections domestically and abroad, including a push to ensure states have a paper ballot back-ups to audit elections. President Trump and his Administration implemented several of his ideas to protect US elections prior to the 2020 election.
In June, Lankford joined Senators Ted Cruz (R-TX), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), John Cornyn (R-TX), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), and Mike Lee (R-UT) to submit a joint amicus brief asking the Supreme Court of the United States to hear the case of DNC v. Hobbs because the lower court’s decision would jeopardize scores of neutral voting laws that are designed to prevent and deter election fraud.
December 2016, there was a poll that was done on if the American people believe the Russians interfered and changed our election. At that time 32 percent of the people believed that the Russians had influenced the outcome of the election—in December of 2016. Based on that belief and what was going it launched a whole series of hearings. Certainly the Russians were trying to interfere in our elections, but we spent millions and millions of dollars investigating it, going through it, ramping up entities like CISA and others to be able to go engage to be able to protect our next election. Senator Klobuchar and I worked for years on election security legislation and worked to be able to get that implemented. We did six different public hearings on Russian interference just on that one topic to make sure we were paying attention to it—when it all started with 32 percent of Americans in December of 2016 believing that the Russians had interfered in our election.
A few days ago, another poll asked the question, “Do you believe there was election voter fraud in the presidential election between Joe Biden and Donald Trump?” This December 46 percent of the voters in America have said yes, 45 percent saying no. Interestingly enough, Trump voters said there was fraud 80 percent. Biden voters also said 16 percent that they believe there was voter. The reason I bring that up is, we watched what happened in 2016 and what the American people thought and saw—so we engaged with hearings, we looked at the issues and determined do things need to change? Much of the work that has gone on the last several years to get paper ballots in to states happened because this Congress engaged on an issue where we saw an obvious problem. And so we distributed federal dollars, assistance, and a constant drumbeat to say these states have got to fix the areas where they don’t have paper ballots and we have the potential for problems. That was the question—is there a potential for a problem? The answer was, yes there was a potential and we ought to fix that.
Now, amazingly, after this election all kinds of issues have come up and said there are potentials for problem and everyone seems to be saying ‘move on.’ The only reason that I can think that would be different is of the election outcome seem to be different. And one side is now saying let’s just move on and ignore this. In my state on election night, like 27 other states in the country, by that evening we were counting votes and all absentee ballots had been received. There was much less opportunity for accusations of fraud because all of our ballots were in.
Amazingly enough, a week after the election was completed this November, Oklahomans were listening to other states that were saying things like ‘we don’t know how many more ballots there are left to count.’ We had been done for a week. We and 27 other states had been completed for a week. That gives opportunity for fraud and questions and problems. That’s a reasonable question to ask. It’s reasonable to be able to ask if people can drift around and gather ballots from other people and do ballot harvesting—and in some states that’s legal. Does that provide an opportunity for fraud? I think the obvious answer is yes. The obvious answer is if you mail a ballot to everyone in the state even if they didn’t ask for it does it provide an opportunity for fraud? Especially when the state did not first purge or verify those addresses and they sent thousands of ballots to people that no longer live there. I’ve talked to a Nevada resident that received multiple at their home for people that no longer live there. That’s a problem, and we should at least admit that’s a problem. And for some reason the other side was very focused on, ‘we’ve got to fix the potential for problems from 2016, but in 2020 when there is potential for problem in things that have been shown everyone seems to say, move along. Let’s not discuss this. There’s a system call the ERIC System that’s in place that 30 states cooperate with. It helps them verify if people moved and they’re registered in two different states or if they moved into your state and they’re registered somewhere else. It helps determine if they’re voting in two different states. Only 30 states use that. Other states are not and even of the 30 states that use it not all of them are actually using it. They are literally on the system but they’re not actually purging their rolls when they know there are people that have moved out of their states and have been informed of that. Just this last year in the ERIC system they identified 91,000 people that are registered voters that are dead. 91,000 that that one system had recognized. There are problems in the system.