John Fund on the Voting Process in New Mexico:

When a race is close, all sorts of bizarre things happen:
Yesterday afternoon, [New Mexico] Democratic Secretary of State Rebecca Vigil-Giron asked the state Supreme Court to overturn lower court ruling that had allowed Republican observers into the polls in Sandoval and Dona Ana counties. She also seeks to overturn a decision by the Bernalillo County Clerk to allow observers there. In her court filing, she contends state law doesn't provide for challengers to be part of the review process.

But cynics point out that she filed her petition shortly after the Bernalillo County Clerk told media outlets that observers had discovered instances of voter fraud during the qualification of provisional ballots. Provisional votes are cast by people whose names did not appear on registration rolls but nonetheless were allowed to vote pending verification of their eligibility. In counting the first 5,000 provisional ballots in Bernalillo County, observers turned up 53 instances of individuals voting more than once. They also found four voters who were dead and dozens of felons attempting to vote. In two cases, the same individual tried to vote three times: early, absentee and on Election Day.

Double voting appears to fall into two categories: voters who themselves may have voted multiple times, and those whose votes were essentially stolen. Dwight Atkins of Albuquerque attempted to vote on Election Day, only to discover that someone had already voted early in his name. Rosemary McGee showed up to vote at 3 pm on Election Day. But someone had voted in her place at 7:00am (the imposter actually misspelled her name on the signature roster). Both were shocked to learn that if an imposter votes first, the fraudulent ballot will stand, and the provisional ballot, cast later by the legitimate voter, will be disqualified.

Earlier this year, when Secretary of State Vigil-Giron went to court to prevent expanded enforcement of the state's requirement that first-time voters show a photo ID, New Mexico Democrats insisted voter fraud didn't exist in New Mexico. So much for that argument. But now it appears that local Democrats are willing to go to court to make sure more evidence of it doesn't turn up.

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