I read Jim Condos’ Perspective piece in the May issue of the Sun in which he expressed worries about potential restrictions of a citizen’s right to vote and his quick dismissal of the existence of voter fraud.

Unfortunately, Mr. Condos totally missed some critical concerns that voters in Vermont have about his ability to protect the integrity of the electoral process as Vermont secretary of state.

First, Mr. Condos failed to address the conflict of interest at play when he oversaw an election process this past fall in which he was a candidate. It would seem proper that he would have recused himself from electoral oversight duties. Secondly, scholarly research has demonstrated that significant numbers of non-citizens have voted in recent times. Researchers Richman, Chattah and Earnest studied non-citizen voting and wrote about it in the 36th volume of the professional journal Electoral Studies back in 2014. A survey of more than 32,000 respondents led the researchers to this conclusion: “Non-citizens participate in U.S. elections, and that this participation has been large enough to change meaningful election outcomes including Electoral College votes and congressional elections. Non-citizens votes likely gave Senate Democrats the pivotal 60th vote needed to overcome filibusters in order to pass health care reform and other Obama administration priorities in the 111th Congress.”

Finally, Mr. Condos’ state department sent at least one dead person a ballot this past fall that I know of, and when I moved from South Burlington to Colchester a while ago, I could have voted in both precincts if I chose to, which I did not.

Get with it, Mr. Condos. You will continue to hear about voter fraud as long as it is happening and until you demonstrate to voters that you are able to protect the integrity of the electoral process here in Vermont. The real threat to democracy is voter fraud and sloppy departmental practice that permits it.


Tom Wieland