The Myth of Voter Fraud


Product Details

$30.95  $28.47
Cornell University Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.3 X 1.0 inches | 0.01 pounds

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About the Author

Lorraine C. Minnite is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Barnard College and a Senior Fellow at Demos. She is coauthor of Keeping Down the Black Vote: Race and the Demobilization of American Voters.


"Minnite argues persuasively that instances of people fraudulently voting in the US are rare. She makes a compelling case that the vast majority of non-legitimate registrations are innocent errors, that only a small number of individuals illegitimately registered actually cast ballots, and that only an even smaller number of these illegitimate ballots are counted. Using game theory, she suggests that her findings should not be surprising as the high potential costs of illegal voting would not justify the problematic gains. She then demonstrates that, although voter fraud is insignificant, the myth of voter fraud is important as a means to justify cumbersome administrative practices designed to depress turnout.... She writes engagingly and with a sense of humor. An important book."


"This insightful and contemporary book focuses on a seemingly straightforward question: Is election fraud a problem in the United States? The answer, revealed in the title, is that it is not, but this conclusion is only drawn after a well-researched evaluation of the recent accusations of voter fraud. Minnite meticulously presents high-profile and widely cited cases of voter fraud, some of which continue to be widely referenced by politicians and in the news media, and shows that few cases of voter fraud have been supported with evidence. Overall, Minnite makes the case that intentional voter fraud rarely occurs in the U.S. context. Minnite provides a thorough and serious treatment of election fraud in the United States. The book is a much-needed contribution to the literature on election fraud, and will be an important resource for anyone interested in voter fraud. It also raises several debates that may be worth exploring in future research, and that relate to the degree to which the book's central arguments can be applied outside of the current U.S. context. This book is an excellent and timely contribution to the study of election fraud, and should be read by political scientists, those interested in election administration, and policymakers at the state and federal levels. The biggest strength of Minnite's book is that it persuasively argues that simplifying the electoral process in the United States should be a high priority, and is one that will significantly improve the integrity of the electoral process. I agree, and I hope that future debates consider not only what is politically feasible or what will provide short-term political gain, but what is best for the quality of U.S. elections and voter confidence in the electoral process."

--Election Law Journal