Officials: No evidence of rampant voter fraud in New Jersey

The Hudson County Board of Elections clerk says that there is no evidence of massive voter fraud in New Jersey.

The Hudson County Board of Elections clerk says that there is no evidence of massive voter fraud in New Jersey. (1/26/17)

HUDSON COUNTY - President Donald Trump singled out New Jersey and New York as states that have a lot of voter fraud, but the clerk of the Hudson County Board of Elections says that so far there is no evidence of rampant voter fraud in the Garden State.

“They’re registered in a New York and in a New Jersey. They vote twice,” Trump said in an interview with ABC’s David Muir. “There are millions of votes, in my opinion.”

Although Trump won the electoral votes to win the election, opponent Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by several million votes. Trump alleges that undocumented immigrants and people using dead voters’ names voted in the election. He says that it could be as many as 3-5 million fraudulent votes.

Gov. Chris Christie says that he agrees with the president.

“There’s some,” Christie said when asked about voter fraud. “Our beloved former Gov. Brendan Byrne, one of his favorite jokes, is that when he dies, he made [his wife] promise that she's going to bury him in Hudson County, so he can 'remain active in politics.’”

Christie cited Hudson County as having a reputation for voter fraud but that dates back to the first half of the last century.  Hudson County Board of Elections clerk Michael Harper says that the county has very little voter fraud.

“Are there dead people on the books? Sure there are. But it’s a record keeping issue, not a voter fraud issue,” he says.

Harper says that just because there are the names of people who have died on the books doesn’t mean people are using those names to vote. He says that he has only heard of two cases of voter fraud.

“I remember one specific case of a person trying to vote for another person and one other case of someone who voted in two counties,” he says.

Harper says that the reason Hudson County has a reputation for voter fraud stems from allegations surrounding former Jersey City Mayor Frank Hague. Hague, who served for 30 years, put more voters on the rolls than there were people of age to vote in the county. He could have been investigated, but left office in 1947.

The president is set to sign an executive order to look into allegations of voter fraud in the November presidential election.

Political science professor Matt Hale says that any large-scale investigation into the election would be costly.

“It’s your tax dollars going in to prove something that doesn't make any difference because he won the Electoral College,” Hale says.

There has been no evidence of voter fraud on a scale Trump has referenced in a United States election, to date.

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