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Here’s what happened when 3 white people were charged with voter fraud

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Crystal Mason was just sentenced five years in prison for unknowingly committing voter fraud by voting in the 2016 election. The 43-year-old mother of two had just been released from a 3-year sentence for tax fraud and was on parole. At no point did her parole officer or anyone at the state or local level tell her she couldn’t vote. She didn’t know and now she’s going to prison for it.

Yet, in three other cases of voter fraud, no one went to jail.

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In North Carolina, a voter for President Donald Trump cast a ballot on behalf of her mother, who had just died. She claimed that she was grieving the death and didn’t know she couldn’t vote on behalf of a dead person. In that case, no charges were filed.

“This woman is 67 years old and has never run afoul of the law for anything more serious than a speeding ticket,” District Attorney David Learner said in a statement. “It is not in the public’s interest to charge her with this felony offense.”

In Colorado, the former Republican Party chair filled out his wife’s ballot for her and mailed it in. When she went to the polls, she was told she’d already voted, with no knowledge of it. He claimed he was having a “major diabetic episode” and had no memory of filling out the ballot.

In that case, he was given three years of probation and 300 hours of community service.

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Another incident occurred in Iowa, Terri Lynn Rote tried to vote twice for Trump. Her excuse was that she believed Trump when he said the “election is rigged.” She feared her first vote would probably be changed to support Hillary Clinton, so she wanted to vote again.

In that case, she confessed to her guilt and was given probation with a $750 fine.

Crystal Mason was the only of the group who received prison. There are two major differences in Mason’s case and the other convicted voter fraudsters. First, the case was in Texas. Second, she’s black.

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In a list of punishments doled out, reporter Reid Wilson asked, “Which of these is not like the other?”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Texas governor busted sending racist call-to-arms a day before El Paso attack: ‘take matters into our own hands’

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On Thursday, Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) tweeted out a message of unity and promised to work to reduce violence in his state, in the wake of the shooting in El Paso that left 22 dead and dozens more injured:

Today we had hearings responding to the tragic shooting in El Paso.

We focused on community healing, combating domestic terrorism, reducing hateful ideologies, & keeping guns out of hands of deranged killers while respecting 2nd Amendment rights.

We’ll keep TX safe.#txlege pic.twitter.com/ymct4aiSgK

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Facebook bans far-right website from pro-Trump advertising after they try to skirt transparency rules

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On Thursday, NBC News reported that Facebook has banned the Epoch Times from placing political advertisements, after the right-wing website tried to conceal its multimillion-dollar dark money streams and get around the social network's political advertising transparency rules in its propaganda supporting President Donald Trump.

The Epoch Times had tried to skirt rules by running ads under puppet names like "Honest Paper" and "Pure American Journalism," confusing users about who was really behind the ads.

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GOP leaders are pressuring Kansas Republican to resign from Congress immediately: report

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On Thursday, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported that Republicans in Kansas and Washington are pressuring Rep. Steve Watkins (R-KS) to step down after just eight months in office.

It is currently unclear why they are calling for his resignation.

Watkins has thus far given no indications he will leave office. His spokesman Jim Joice stated that he has no plans to resign, and disputed the idea that Republican officials are pressuring him to do so, but acknowledged there have been conversations around the topic.

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