Ethan Allen Institute uncovers new voting irregularities in Vermont

Michael Bielawski/TNR

BALLOT INSECURITY: Ballots like this one were sent by regular mail to every home in Vermont in 2020, creating unprecedented security vulnerabilities for elections.

The Ethan Allen Institute has uncovered election irregularities involving voter rolls and out-of-state college students.

According to research conducted by the Vermont-based think tank, 10 graduates of Middlebury College who left the state years ago are recorded as having voted by absentee ballot in the 2020 election.

Nine of those absentee ballots had been mailed in under the students’ names. Five of the 9 absentee voters had their old Middlebury student mailing addresses on file, and the other four absentee voters received ballots at mailing addresses in other states and countries.

EAI discovered the problem by correlating Middlebury’s list of graduating students, a list of all Middlebury citizens who voted in the 2020 election, and graduates’ LinkedIn profiles.

A statement released by the nonprofit group laid blame for the potentially fraudulent votes on Vermont’s “poorly maintained voter lists.”

“These votes are not enough to call into question the legitimacy of Middlebury’s 2020 House race,” the press release states. “But given the slim margins of some recent Vermont elections, shoddy lists place future elections across the state in peril.”

The news comes as national headlines point to record levels of distrust in federal elections. An ABC/Ipsos poll released in January found that only 1-in-5 respondents are “very confident” in the election system —  just 39 percent claim to be “somewhat confident” in elections.

“That’s down from last year, when a poll by ABC News and The Washington Post conducted days after the Capitol riot found that 37 percent of respondents were ‘very confident’ in the integrity of the election system, while 26 percent reported feeling ‘somewhat confident,'” the Newsweek report states.

Several states have continued to investigate irregularities from the 2020 election. A recent story out of Wisconsin suggests that up to 7 percent of mail-in ballots were trafficked into the state from elsewhere.

The Washington Examiner reported last Wednesday that Arizona’s election victory for Joe Biden in 2020 is now being called into question by the state’s attorney general.

“A blockbuster review of Maricopa County’s mismanaged 2020 election by Arizona’s attorney general is raising new questions about the final vote in a state former President Donald Trump was expected to win but lost to Joe Biden by 10,457 ballots,” the report states.

The Ethan Allen Institute researchers noted that the expansion of the state’s absentee ballot system in 2020 — largely in response to fears about COVID-19 — makes it nearly impossible to know who cast the nine votes.

“But we can still prevent this from happening in 2022,” the group added. “…We hope our fellow Vermonters will also reach out to our officials as well and let them know how important electoral integrity is to them. We hope that Middlebury’s, and Vermont’s, voter rolls will be cleaned up in time for the 2022 election, with absentee ballots being sent out in less than 6 months.”

David Flemming, a policy analyst for the EAI, offered a comment by email to True North concerning safeguards typically found in other states’ election systems.

“In 2020, 40 states chose not to rely heavily on absentee mailed ballots as the default voting option,” he wrote. “The other 9 states which did choose absentee mailed ballots as the default voting method required a signature on file to match the signature received on the ballot in the mail. Only Vermont chose not to forgo signature verification.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/PenelopeIsMe and Michael Bielawski/TNR

11 thoughts on “Ethan Allen Institute uncovers new voting irregularities in Vermont

  1. I don’t trust Vermont election results AT ALL. Jim Condos was horrible – listening to Vermont Clerks tell him there is no way at all to track fraud and then coming out with his LIE that our elections are the most secure . . . (paraphrasing) Ugh. How does he know ?!

  2. My gram received a mail in ballot for my grandfather who has been deceased for years. How many individuals are marked as having voted in the election that were deceased at the time of voting?

    The voting rolls need to be audited and weeded.

  3. My son recently received an invitation to apply for a mail-in ballot to vote on various school articles from the Windham Southeast Supervisory Union. What makes this noteworthy, you ask?

    My son hasn’t lived in Vermont for more than a decade. And when he did, he didn’t live in the WSESU school district.

    If anything makes our elections suspect, it’s the gross incompetence of our election officials to exercise their official responsibilities, whatever they are. Never mind intentional fraud, or the Zuckerbucs our towns received to facilitate this incompetence.

  4. I’m sure that there are many more people who were college students here that are still getting ballots from VT. This was the long thinking of the commies in the legislature, at the time, that students would keep getting ballots and keep voting. This is the main reason they wanted them to vote locally instead of voting in their home states and towns thru legit absentee ballots. What a crock. They have only found the tip of the ice berg. VT should be renamed Titanic.

  5. I think at least 25% of all names on Vermont voter lists do not belong there, because they lack up to date photo IDs, and other identification, and people and students have moved away or died.

    My wife recently became a U.S. citizen
    She registered at the Hartford Town Clerk’s office
    She was asked for no ID
    She offered the clerk to look at her citizen papers, BUT SHE REFUSED
    My wife came home, almost tears.
    She said I spent $7000 on a lawyer to be expedited, and this b…. did not even want to look at my papers.
    Are these the Condos instructions?
    Is that situation set up by Vermont laws?
    All of this is off-the-charts disgusting and un-American

    • As a Town Clerk in Brookfield, to clarify the no ID, we are not allowed to ask for an ID because it’s assumed when the affidavit is signed you are stating you are legally eligible to vote where you register. If you are applying for a marriage license, you have to show ID. Go figure…..

      • Teresa,
        Thank you for your courage.
        “We are not allowed…”
        Is this by what law?
        Or is this a pronouncement by Condos?
        What other state have a similar ser up as Vermont?
        In France, every CITIZEN has a national photo ID document with a unique number.
        Voting is only in person.
        No CITIZEN ID, you do not vote.
        A French passport, issued only to citizens, is acceptable for voting.
        No mail-in,
        No harvesting
        If not a citizen, you have a different photo ID document, which is not acceptable for voting

        • France and Germany do not use machines
          All is hand counted in about two days
          All ballots are printed on the same weight water marked paper.
          No copying of ballots is allowed
          There are no registered voter lists.
          All you have to do is to show up at your assigned voting station, show your national ID, and vote
          No fuss, no muss
          Anything else more or less invites election fraud

        • Willem, if you go to V.S.A. Title 17, Chapter 43, Subchapter 2 ss 2145 it states: (c) A board of civil authority or town clerk may not require a person to complete any form other than that approved under subsection (a) of this section or section 2145a of this title; nor may the board of civil authority or the town clerk require all applicants or any particular class or group of applicants to appear personally before a meeting of the board or routinely or as a matter of policy require applicants to submit additional information to verify or otherwise support the information contained in the application form.

          By signing the affidavit, you are “swearing under oath” that the information is correct. We lived in VA Beach for 13 years and “no ID, no vote”. I don’t know why Vermont will not require voter ID’s…

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