Louisiana To Hold New Election After Voter Fraud Proven

A new election in a contentious Louisiana sheriff’s race must be held after the state Supreme Court let a lower court ruling stand on Thursday. It concerned a Democratic victory by a single vote in a contest that saw, in the court’s words, “proven errors.”

The Nov. 18 election in Caddo’s Parish resulted in Democrat Henry Whitehorn defeating Republican John Nickelson by one vote. An initial recount added three votes to each candidate’s tally, which still ended in Whitehorn being the winner.

But the candidate’s victory remained far from a certainty after several mistakes were uncovered.

Ad hoc Judge Joe Bleich found “two people voted twice, five mail-in ballots should not have been counted for failure to comply with the law, and…four invalid votes by interdicted persons who were unqualified voters.”

On this basis, Bleich ordered a new election. Whitehorn immediately appealed to the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld the judge’s ruling.

The Democrat then took his argument to the Louisiana Supreme Court but once again was denied. Justice Scott Crichton wrote, “In this case, a new election will ensure confidence in the final outcome.”

He added that “in a race as close as this, an irregularity affecting even a single vote cannot be disregarded.”

Caddo Parish is one of Louisiana’s most populated and is nestled in the northwest corner of the state. More than 43,000 ballots were cast in the original race.

Louisiana is unique in the nation in that it is the only state that still uses paperless touch screen voting machines.

This system does not produce an auditable paper trail that can be followed in the event of a disputed election result. Having that recourse became even more critical after the hotly contested 2020 presidential race.

The state’s absentee ballots, which accounted for 17% of those cast in Caddo Parish, were the only verifiable evidence from the sheriff’s race. But officials including Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin insist that checks and balances are in place and the system is secure.

In November, a Democratic mayoral primary in Connecticut’s largest city was tossed out due to possible ballot stuffing. This led to an understandable outcry among advocates for stronger election security and those concerned with irregularities in the 2020 presidential count.