Election Day: Wild Tricks of The Past

  • AUTHOR: dua
  • POSTED ON: October 26, 2020

There are several
things that can go wrong during Election Day. For instance, in 1880, many
poll workers got hungry and left to get themselves crackers. By the time the
officials began to count the votes, they had already been tainted.

Through the years,
historians have had the task of tracing patterns and predict future behaviors.
When they study the election season, they’ve understood how easy it is to rig 
and rip people off their rights. This kills reconstruction and stalls political

Just because we’ve
faced certain shortcomings in the past, doesn’t mean that we’re going to repeat
it in 2020.

One of the most obvious
ways to steal an election is through US Postal Service, a central tool this
year. Back in the day, post offices were considered the choke point for all
kinds of political news. However, the problem was that they were run by
partisan postmasters appointed by the congressman who were in the running.
Obviously, this resulted in frequent accidents like “losing oppositions

Apart from this, many
people used to print out their own ballots, which made it challenging for the
rivals to win enough tickets. In fact, the telegraphs were untrustworthy. Do
you know that, in 1876, Western Union operators had sent the private messages
of the Democratic politicians to the Republican Headquarters?

In a matter of few
years, the tricks to manipulate the election increased. Like, many states
didn’t have proper voter registration systems installed, so the partisans had
to hang out near the polls and challenge illegal voting as well as the legal
ones because they feared that it was voted by the rival ticket.

Source: Vox 

The situation is
thankfully better today because, back then, there was widespread fraud in casting
ballots. Rudyard Kipling calls it a unique art of buying votes in retail.

But you know what was
worse? Colonizing! Basically, many districts were filled with temporary voters,
so Philadelphians sent their votes to Manhattan, whereas the New Yorkers were
swinging the Baltimore elections. Sometimes, White Democrats used to send large
crews of republican African-Americans to work in railroad and get a win in
North Florida. This train strangely broke down, which left them stranded on the
Election Day – world class move!

Instead of moving men
around, there’s a better way to get an easy win! For example, this one time,
there were tissue ballots that were so thin that voters could fold it ten times
to make it look like a single vote. This other time, there were tapeworm
ballots that were skinny and long but also stopped dissenters from scratching
the names of candidates that weren’t approved by the party. There were also
color-coded ballots that utilized colors scheming to fool illiterates. 

When you compare
stealing the cast and stealing the count, the latter was comparatively easier
and less confrontational. All you had to do was quietly turn power into more
power and manipulate locals to swing the state elections that had national
consequences. One time, a Democratic journalist Marcus Pomeroy bragged about
throwing the opposition votes into the fire while he was working in Wisconsin.

When look back at the
1876 election, the Democrats that won the popular vote by a landslide but the
Republicans controlled the returning boards and bribed their way to the steal
the count. One Democrat supporter noted that to win an election, “you only need to know what kind of
scoundrels constitute the returning boards.”

No matter how ugly the
history is, you can always learn a few things as they’ll be useful in the
present day. For example, if you’re considering stealing votes as a strategy, you
must know that it’s a lot of labor. Like, you have to coordinate machines that
are even capable of casting a large number of fraudulent ballots. Several
studies have indicated that today there’s no significant number of voting fraud
because this form of fraud is not only laborious but it also leaves a lot of
evidence behind.

Electoral reform has
always been a critical topic of discussion. Men who previously got involved in
colonizing districts ended up writing new laws related to the election. One of them
published a popular study of varied political machines constituting the
dirtiest tricks. By 1990, Americans redirected the attention and tightened up
the electoral system instead of looking for new ways to malign.

The 2020 elections area
major throwback in the sense that there are several bad men at the ballot box
who will intimidate the voters. You’ll most likely witness fraud and political
theft. People are anxious so they might fraud their attention back to the
neglected polling stations. Many students, activists, and donors have set their
eyes on the unsexy topic as it holds their interest in particular.

No one can predict the
diligence and credibility of cast and count system in 2020,
but one thing is for sure: Wild accusations will be raised from both sides.


Updated October 26, 2020
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