Democrats arrested for voting fraud in Connecticut’s largest city

I’ve waited a long time to do a post about Democratic voting fraud, but I finally found a case, and it’s a doozy!

It should be noted, though, that this is a story about local contests between Democratic candidates in a solidly blue state, and doesn’t involve voting for president or stealing elections from Republicans. This blog’s posts about voting fraud have usually focused on votes for president or senators.

Bridgeport, Connecticut, with a population of just under 150,000, is the state’s largest city and a historic factory town, notable “for its polarizing political culture.” It’s a mixed-race city; 39% of residents are white, 38% Hispanic, and 35% black; and English is the primary language in only 48% of households (more details here).

Local elections in Bridgeport are slugfests. The absentee vote is fiercely fought over. Last week, prosecutors charged 4 Democratic operatives with absentee ballot harvesting in the city’s 2019 mayoral primary after years of investigations and litigation (story here). The same thing occurred in the 2023 mayoral primary, prompting a judge to throw out the results and order a new election (read that story here).

Arrested were Alfredo Castillo, a city councilman; Wanda Geter-Pataky, a city employee and local Democratic Party vice-chair; and two campaign workers. All four are charged with unlawful possession of other voters’ absentee ballot. In fact, they filled out those ballots for the voters. Castillo and Geter-Pataky also are charged with witness tampering.

The beneficiary was Mayor Joe Ganim, who served federal prison time for corruption and bribery (details here). A local news source says “political operatives on both sides” allegedly “illegally influenced” the absentee vote (see story here).

What’s going on in Bridgeport is reminiscent of 19th century political brawling, but it’s an outlier, and doesn’t validate GOP claims that voting fraud is widespread, occurs nationally, or the 2020 election was “stolen” from Trump.

Republicans had ample opportunity to litigate those claims, and lost every one of their court cases due to lack of evidence. Trump’s own attorney general said there wasn’t widespread fraud. Numerous reputable studies have shown voting fraud is extremely rare, usually committed by individuals, and doesn’t affect election results. That doesn’t mean elections are perfect, but they don’t have to be, only the best we can do — and fair.

As for Bridgeport and its elections, maybe they belong in a museum or zoo.

Photo below: McLevy Hall, built in 1854, served as Bridgeport’s city hall and courthouse until the 1930s. Lincoln gave a speech here in 1860.

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