CLAIM: Voter fraud has been found after women’s maiden names were used to cast ballots in other states.
THE FACTS: The false narrative that women’s maiden names were being used without their knowledge to cast votes in other states circulated with the hashtag #maidengate, and was targeted at states including battlegrounds Arizona, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
“Voter fraud strategy discovered. Married women’s maiden name was used to register and stack up extra votes. #MaidenGate,” one tweet said. Sylvia Albert, director of voting and elections for Common Cause, a nonpartisan election watchdog group, told the AP, “There’s no evidence of this taking place." Jason Roberts, political science professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said that in order to pull off this feat, a voter would have to go into another state and know the address and former name of a person. They would also have to know that the person’s voter registration in the state was not already deactivated. Numerous safeguards are in place to detect voting fraud like this.
“You then have to state their name, state their address and sign an affidavit saying this was you,” Roberts said. “All of this is under penalty of felony, and then vote.” Even then, when a person first registers to vote, a form of ID is typically required. Albert said that under the Help America Vote Act, the first time anyone votes it has to be verified with identification. "Yes it’s possible for someone’s maiden name to be on the voter rolls during the time in which the name is being changed and the records are being updated,” Albert said. But voting using someone else’s identity is a crime and could not be accomplished by thousands of people in different states. “How are you going to coordinate 10,000 people to do this?” said Roberts.
— Associated Press writer Beatrice Dupuy in New York contributed this item.