Local Registration Fraud Reaffirms Need for Photo ID
Regardless of the outcome this November, we need to be confident that our elections are carried out fairly and with integrity. While I believe nearly everyone has this same desire, unfortunately there will always be those individuals that want to cheat and do whatever is necessary to tip the scale in their candidates favor. By now, I am sure you have heard about the case of a JMU student that submitted the names of roughly 20 deceased individuals to our local Harrisonburg registrar.
I do not believe voter/registration fraud is rampant in our Commonwealth, but anyone that says it does not exist is either extremely naive or simply pushing their preferred partisan agenda. This case in our own backyard proves the necessity in reasonable voting laws like the photo ID requirement, to ensure the integrity of our elections. I was proud to support the photo ID law. Our law provides ample accommodations to ensure no legally qualified voter is disenfranchised, while still acting as a necessary tool to prevent fraudulent voting.
Thankfully we have a diligent registrar and staff that caught the fraud in this particular instance, but our voter ID requirement could have been the only thing standing in the way of allowing this individual or recruited accomplices to vote under multiple names.
Unfortunately, liberal interests groups continue to challenge our photo ID law in court, despite the fact that polls consistently show that citizens of all partisan persuasions support a photo id requirement by strong majorities. While we initially won a case in federal court, it is currently being taken up on appeal. This local fraud case continues to highlight the need for common sense policies that ensure one person, one vote.
The first step in making your voice heard this November is making sure you are registered to vote. If you are not registered or if you have moved since the last election, it is critical that you register. The deadline for registering or updating your current registration is Monday, October 17. For information on how to register or to check your current registration status, please click here.
If you will be out of town or otherwise unable to make it to the polls in November, you can vote absentee, either in person or by mail.
The deadline for requesting an absentee ballot by mail is November 1. Your local registrar must have the application in hand by 5:00 pm on November 1. The last day to vote in person absentee is Saturday, November 5 at 5:00 pm.
For more information on absentee voting, click here.
Multiple Ways to Get Involved!
This coming Wednesday (10/5), Governor Mike Pence will be at the Rockingham County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall for a rally starting at 11:30 am! Doors will open at 9:30 am. NO homemade signs, banners, professional cameras with a detachable lens, tripods, monopods, selfie sticks, back packs or large bags will be permitted into the venue. Please click here to get tickets to this free event.
Right now our local party is staffing our headquarters, and they could use more help to ensure that it remains open during the regularly scheduled hours. The job simply entails that you greet visitors, hand out signs and materials and get contact information. Please contact me if you are willing to man the headquarters and I will put you in touch with the appropriate individuals. The headquarters is located at 182 Neff Avenue, Suite S7, Harrisonburg (behind the Valley Mall). You can also get your Trump/Pence and Goodlatte signs at the headquarters when they are open.
Another opportunity is going door to door for our candidates. While some may find this intimidating, I assure you that citizens in our community are most always polite, even if they don’t agree with you. If you are interested in door to door, please call Kristen Retter (Team Virginia Field Director) at (540)303-9496 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Page Application Deadline Approaching
Applications are being accepted until 5:00 pm on Monday, October 17 for the House Page Program. Any 13 or 14 year old student (as of Jan. 11, 2017) can apply online to serve as a page for the 2017 General Assembly Session. It is a highly regarded program that immerses students in the legislative process. Participants gain knowledge and experience that is difficult to obtain in a classroom setting.
All applicants are required to obtain a letter of endorsement from their Delegate. Before submitting a letter of support, it is my requirement to speak with the applicant. If you are interested in becoming a House Page, please contact my office at (540) 208-0735 or DelTWilt@house.virginia.gov to set up an appointment. To access the online application, please click here.