Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has come out swinging against ballot harvesting following Project Veritas’ recent video stings alleging that Ilhan Omar campaign staffers in Minneapolis have been involved in a cash-for-votes ballot harvesting scheme.
Gabbard described the videos as “further evidence of the need to ban ballot harvesting” to safeguard “our sacred right to vote.”
Her remarks followed a statement from the Minneapolis Police Department on Monday afternoon that police are now investigating “allegations of voter fraud following the release of the Project Veritas videos.
“Congress needs to pass our bipartisan bill to ban ballot harvesting so no one can exploit our sacred right to vote,” Gabbard stated on Twitter.
“Project Veritas offers further evidence of the need to ban ballot harvesting. It’s not a partisan issue. It’s been abused to help both R & D candidates, including in North Carolina & California. Please help by telling your congressional rep to pass our bipartisan bill HR8285,” she added.
In addition to her remarks, Gabbard shared a video she produced earlier this month where she announced a bipartisan bill to the House of Representatives to ban ballot harvesting.
“Hey, everybody, we’re getting closer and closer to election day now, and it is critical to remember that the strength of our democracy lies in the integrity of our elections, that every one of us has to have faith that our vote will count,” Gabbard said in the video.
“But right now, there are still many states in our country that allow for something called ballot harvesting. This is a system that allows for third parties to collect and deliver ballots for other people, potentially large numbers of people. Unfortunately, ballot harvesting has allowed for fraud and abuse to occur by those who could tamper with or discard ballots to try to sway an election for or against a certain candidate or party.”
“Now, our vote is our voice. So whether in the midst of a pandemic, as we are now, where mail-in voting is likely to drastically increase, or even in a normal election, no one, no one should get in between a voter and the ballot box,” Gabbard said. “Now, while some states have prohibited vote harvesting or ballot harvesting, many have not, which again allows for abuse from third parties collecting and mishandling ballots. This is something that we’ve actually seen happen in recent elections.”
“Now to protect the integrity of our vote in our elections, I’ve introduced legislation called the Election Fraud Prevention Act with my friend Representative Rodney Davis,” Gabbard stated.
“Our bipartisan bill protects the chain of custody for every one of our ballots by prohibiting funding from going to states that allow this practice of ballot harvesting to occur. This bill will actually encourage states to stop this practice that’s ripe for fraud, and that poses a serious threat to the integrity of our elections. And we urge our leaders in Congress to take up this legislation quickly to support and ensure the integrity of our elections.”