Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, violated state law by using his wife as a “designated” person to drop off his mail-in ballot in last week’s election.
Amazingly, Wolf brazenly admitted this on live radio during an interview on Pittsburgh station KDKA’s “Morning Show” on the day of the election, Tuesday.
“I didn’t show up in person at the polls. We voted a couple weeks ago, actually. My wife actually dropped it off personally two weeks ago, so it’s there. I trust my wife,” he said during the interview.
Listen from the 1:25 mark below:
“Under Pennsylvania law, voters must return their own ballots. The only exceptions to this are for voters with a disability who have designated someone in writing to deliver their ballot,” the PA Department of State explicitly notes.
While this is obviously a minor offense, it’s still an offense that’s punishable by law.
According to Spotlight PA, a nonprofit that provides investigative reporting on state-related issues, a violation of this provision is “punishable by up to one year in prison, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.”
The governor’s spokesperson told the nonprofit that his decision to let his wife function as a “designated” person “was an honest mistake.”
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the district attorney in the county where Wolf lives refused to say whether the DA has received any formal complaints about the violation.
According to state Rep. Seth Grove, a Republican, Wolf’s “mistake” wouldn’t have even been an issue had the governor passed his legislation:
On Nov. 2, Gov. Wolf did an interview with KDKA where he disclosed his wife turned in his mail-in ballot for him.
This is illegal under the election code, BUT would have been legal had he signed HB 1300.
1:25-1:55 minute has the salient portion:https://t.co/laMBmv4D2a
— Rep. Seth Grove – “the Architect” (@RepGrove) November 4, 2021
Introduced by Grove, HB 1300 “would have allowed members of the same household to return each other’s ballots,” according to Spotlight PA.
The only stipulation would have been that inspectors “would have been required to verify the identity of each person dropping off a ballot and ensure the voter signed and dated it.”
Wolf vetoed the common-sense legislation in June because it also contained several provisions designed to enhance election security.
“The bill would have also implemented stricter voter identification requirements, allowed in-person early voting, and required signature verification of mail ballots. Wolf vetoed the bill, in part, because of the ID rules,” according to Spotlight PA.
In a statement made at the time of the veto, the governor falsely asserted that such requirements are “ultimately … about restricting the freedom to vote.”
“If adopted, it would threaten to disrupt election administration, undermine faith in government, and invite costly, time-consuming, and destabilizing litigation,” he claimed.
This is a false narrative frequently used by the left, though it’s failed to penetrate the public, with polls consistently showing that most Americans support such laws.
“To say I am disappointed in Wolf’s lack of action is an understatement. Though Wolf has put on blinders to problems within our election process, it doesn’t mean the problems do not exist,” Grove said in his own statement at the time.
In an interview this weekend with The Philadelphia Inquirer, the state congressman was a little softer with the governor.
“This happens. No one is an election law expert, right? Average citizens aren’t. We wanted to make the change to allow that interaction because we get it: It is convenient for a spouse to drop off your ballot,” he reportedly said.
He does suspect though that had a GOP governor made a similar “mistake,” said governor would currently be facing the wrath of the establishment press:
Newsmedia coverage of Gov. Wolf & wife has been interesting.
Most newspapers covered, some ignored it (you know who you are).
Some TV stations tried to make a joke of it – not a joke.
Had this been GOP Gov, there would have been calls for resignations in editorials.
— Rep. Seth Grove – “the Architect” (@RepGrove) November 7, 2021
Grove reintroduced his proposed provisions in September under a new bill, HB 1800. The reintroduction came after Wolf, in a stunning 180, told the Inquirer that his perspective on voter ID laws had changed.
“In June, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported Gov. Tom Wolf is now open to enhanced voter identification requirements in the Commonwealth. While this revelation would have been more welcomed a month ago as the General Assembly was moving House Bill 1300 through the legislative process, it is a productive development,” Grove noted in a September statement.
Grove Reintroduces Voting Rights Protection Acthttps://t.co/HzfHG0WkH3
— Rep. Seth Grove – “the Architect” (@RepGrove) September 17, 2021
“Today, I have reintroduced the Voting Rights Protection Act as House Bill 1800, which protects our voting rights through three broad concepts of increased access, increased security and modernization. We know access and security are not mutually exclusive,” the PA lawmaker added.
As of early November, it didn’t appear the bill had made it onto Wolf’s desk yet. Perhaps his “honest mistake” will inspire him to vote “yes” once it does …
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