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Home / Tips and Tricks / Voting twice in the 2020 elections is fraud. Here’s what happens when you try

Voting twice in the 2020 elections is fraud. Here’s what happens when you try



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Please only one “I have chosen” sticker per person.

James Martin / CNET

This story is part of 2020 elections, CNET̵

7;s coverage of the November vote preparations.

No, you cannot vote twice. Earlier this month, President Donald Trump appeared to be encouraging voters to cast their vote twice. He made the comments in North Carolina and on twitterIf this is suggested incorrectly, it will ensure that the ballots count on the list November 3rd presidential election. Trying to vote more than once, also known as a double vote, is illegal under federal law, is considered fraud, and is considered a criminal offense in many states.

It is against the law to vote in person in addition to voting by post or to try to vote in any other way twice. Mail-in voting fraud is extremely rareSo experts say there is no need Mail in your voting slip and then go to your polling station. If you prefer to vote in person, you can find it here Everything you should know about early voting and how to stay safe in the elections.

Each state has its own laws for prosecuting double voters, in addition to fines and possible prison terms. Here’s what could happen if you try to vote twice.


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You could be punished under federal law and go to jail

Federal Electoral Practices Act provides that those who vote more than once “will be fined no more than $ 10,000 or incarcerated for no more than five years or both.”

An exception is made when “all previous ballots of this voter have been invalidated”. This particular exception does not apply to Postal voting by post while you also vote in person in the elections. That is not allowed.

You may face jail time

Some states may receive jail sentences or jail sentences for knowingly choosing twice. The longest prison sentence in the state of Georgia is up to 10 years for election fraud.

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If you vote twice, you face jail terms and a fine.

James Martin / CNET

Your state could penalize you in addition to a federal fine

Double votes in many states are punished not only with prison but also with a fine. For example, in Georgia, fines for two-way votes can be up to $ 100,000. You could be fined $ 15,000 if you committed election fraud in Pennsylvania.

State laws against more than one voting

Most states specifically prohibit double votes in different ways by applying different types of laws. Remember, voting twice in an election is a federal crime and state laws apply in addition to a federal prohibition. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a non-partisan research group, here are the specific types of double voting that these states say are not possible.

1. States that forbid voting twice within the same state or for the same office: Alabama, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Mississippi, and West Virginia.

2. States in which you cannot vote twice in the same election: Alaska, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Columbia District, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio , Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.


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3. These states make it a crime to vote in more than one state (For example, Arizona and Colorado do not allow you to vote even if you own property in both states): Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oregon, South Dakota, Virginia, and Washington.

4. In Indiana, one cannot knowingly receive a false ballot Jurisdiction: For example, you received a ballot paper to vote in a county where you do not live and you still voted there. To be eligible to vote within a specific electoral area, you must be a resident of that area.

What if my state doesn’t prohibit double votes?

Some states, such as Indiana, don’t have a specific two-way vote law. Knowingly multiple voting in federal elections is prohibited in all 50 states and US territories and is punishable by imprisonment and / or a fine.

For more information on the elections, see This is where you can vote early in your state, How does the postal vote work in all 50 US states? and What you need to know about postal voting, online ballot papers, and polling stations.


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