Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Friday, September 07, 2018

On Nov. 8, 2016, Crystal Mason, an African-American mother of three, went to the polls and voted. She had been in prison for tax-related offenses, and was on federal parole. "I went to the local church, where I went before I went to prison, to vote," she stated on "Democracy Now!" . "When they checked the roster, they realized my name wasn't there ... and she began to leave. A polling volunteer told her she could fill out a provisional ballot. ... If you're at the right location, it will count. And if you're not, it won't.' I didn't see any harm with that. So the lady sat me down and helped me out with it." What Crystal didn't know was that in Texas, you can't vote while on parole. She was charged with voter fraud, convicted and sentenced to five years in prison. On top of that shock, a federal judge ruled that because she violated the terms of her release she must spend an additional 10 months in federal prison.

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Texas state law is clear: A person can only be convicted of voter fraud if he or she intended to commit the offense. Crystal Mason clearly did not.
We're taking the word of the convicted felon who broke her parole that she didn't also intend to commit voter fraud when she signed an affidavit stating that she had fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind?

But since she was black authorities sought to make an example of her.
Sad bit of race baiting there.

In Iowa a white women deliberately voted twice for Trump and received 2 years probation and a $750 fine
A decent combination of whataboutism and ignorance of additional differences in these 2 cases.
There is, and should be, a difference in sentence between a first time offender and a felon repeat offender regardless of the skin color or sex of the offenders.

An election worker offered to help, he said, and presented her with a provisional ballot, which allows a person to cast a vote as long as they certify they are eligible by signing an affidavit. Small print at the top asks the voter to certify that if she is a felon, she has fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind.

#1 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 10:09 AM | Reply

Texas is serious about voter fraud. If you want to vote illegally, do it in California, Illinois or New York. They don't look for fraud, so they never find it.

#2 | Posted by visitor_ at 2018-09-07 11:40 AM | Reply

people like avigdore ignore racism all the time but commit it all the time as well.

#3 | Posted by klifferd at 2018-09-07 11:47 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#2 | POSTED BY VISITOR_

Link up, buttercup.

#4 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2018-09-07 11:47 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Either you believe people are innocent until guilty or you don't. Whether she is lying or not there is no proof that she lied deliberately. There is no proof she can read for that matter.

Even though it is impossible to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that she deliberately lied in her claim she was unaware that there was a law against voting in her circumstances, a five year sentence is ridiculous and would never have been imposed on a white women. Ann Coulter voted illegally without suffering any consequence at all, except some bad publicity.

Texas is a racist State which has been able to restore many Jim Crow laws under the Robert's Court. Conservatives use the law to undermine poor participation in society and ignore the law whenever it applies to their own kind. Its the only way they can hold on to power.

#5 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 12:04 PM | Reply | Funny: 2 | Newsworthy 2

#1
"We're taking the word of the convicted felon who broke her parole that she didn't also intend to commit voter fraud when she signed an affidavit stating that she had fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind?"

LOL! That's rich. So anyone who was convicted and spent time in prison is automatically a liar? There's no way this woman may have done this without understanding it was illegal?

"In the mid-1980s Liddy went on the lecture circuit, being listed as the top speaker on the college circuit in 1982"
en.wikipedia.org

No one should have been listening to this guy, right?

#6 | Posted by lfthndthrds at 2018-09-07 12:09 PM | Reply

That's whataboutism to the power of non sequitur.

#7 | Posted by visitor_ at 2018-09-07 12:42 PM | Reply

Of course it is, in your mind.

#8 | Posted by lfthndthrds at 2018-09-07 12:51 PM | Reply

"Texas is serious about voter racism."

FTFY

#9 | Posted by danni at 2018-09-07 12:52 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Texas state law is clear: A person can only be convicted of voter fraud if he or she intended to commit the offense. Crystal Mason clearly did not.
We're taking the word of the convicted felon who broke her parole that she didn't also intend to commit voter fraud when she signed an affidavit stating that she had fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind?

#1 | POSTED BY AVIGDORE

Well, you are wrong in that taking her word is an issue because it's innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

That said, you're also wrong about your interpretation of the law. It's not about whether she intended to break the law, it's about whether she intended to vote. She certainly intended to vote. That she thought she was legal to do so is immaterial to the law in Texas.

#10 | Posted by Sycophant at 2018-09-07 12:55 PM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 2

Ao, she was voting illegaly while black?

#11 | Posted by Sniper at 2018-09-07 12:59 PM | Reply

she has fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind.

#1 | Posted by Avigdore

Still a convicted felon.

#12 | Posted by Sniper at 2018-09-07 01:01 PM | Reply

Even though it is impossible to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that she deliberately lied in her claim she was unaware that there was a law against voting in her circumstances, a five year sentence is ridiculous and would never have been imposed on a white women. - #5 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 12:04 PM
Proving that she lied is not what is required to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. Why do you continue to pretend that she was unaware that she was not allowed to vote when she, that day, signed an affidavit stating otherwise?

Well, you are wrong in that taking her word is an issue because it's innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

That said, you're also wrong about your interpretation of the law. It's not about whether she intended to break the law, it's about whether she intended to vote. She certainly intended to vote. That she thought she was legal to do so is immaterial to the law in Texas.

#10 | Posted by Sycophant at 2018-09-07 12:55 PM
The government is constrained by innocent until proven guilty, not me. I'm more a fan of past behavior is a solid indicator of future behavior until proven otherwise.
Also, I didn't interpret the law in regards to her intention of breaking the law. I was arguing against the original poster who made that claim. Glad to see you backing me up that bayviking is wrong (enough so that his posting was deleted -the statements in italics-, but my response to it was not).

#13 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:08 PM | Reply

"Texas is serious about voter fraud. If you want to vote illegally, do it in California...."

BS. Texas is serious about destroying her life.

If they put her behind bars then it will be a real dick move.

It was a provisional ballot. It was provisional to whether she was entitled to vote there. Obviously it turned out she wasn't eligible so the provisional ballot is tossed. The vote does not count. No harm no foul. Except in Texas. If she was white and made the same mistake...I wonder if would even have been an issue.

#14 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-09-07 01:13 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"She certainly intended to vote" I understand this argument and reject it.

She was told if she belonged on the local registration list her vote would be counted, otherwise it would not. That is how provisional ballots are supposed to work.

The most heinous acts of our Government are conducted behind the guise of plausible deniability. This women voted under exactly such a circumstance, but local authorities and right wingnuts on this blog pretend to know her intent was illegal when there is no proof in support of such a conclusion. The woman has presented a plausible rationale which brings the issue of intent into question. If you are a right wingnut, you will always be afforded that benefit of doubt. If you are a left wing nut you will never be afforded that privilege. If you are black in Texas they will double down on the punishment.

#15 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 01:15 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"The government is constrained by innocent until proven guilty, not me. I'm more a fan of past behavior is a solid indicator of future behavior until proven otherwise."

So you don't believe in justice. Got it.

#16 | Posted by danni at 2018-09-07 01:17 PM | Reply

There is no proof she can read for that matter. - #5 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 12:04 PM
Man, you'll just spout any BS regardless of facts, won't you? She was made a felon because she artificially inflated the deduction amounts of her clients while she was preparing their taxes. There is ample proof that she can read.

#17 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:20 PM | Reply

Got it. - #16 | Posted by Danni at 2018-09-07 01:17 PM

If you actually did, it would be your first.

#18 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:21 PM | Reply

"I'm more a fan of past behavior is a solid indicator of future behavior until proven otherwise."

So you think Trump can pull off a fifth bankruptcy in his current Executive role?

#19 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:23 PM | Reply

The principle of "No harm no foul" is an accepted defense every time for every Corporation, who enjoy constitutional protection but can never be put in jail.

We do not live in a democracy, nor are we free, but we wage war continuously in the name of democracy and freedom. WTF wake up people!!!

#20 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 01:24 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

In other words Avigdore thinks that if you serve your time for your crime then you are automatically guilty of any accusation in the future. I work with a couple of big convicted felons who served out their time, I doubt you would express your view to them to their face. Or maybe you would because both of them are such fine people today that they'd probably let it slide.

#21 | Posted by danni at 2018-09-07 01:31 PM | Reply

So you think Trump can pull off a fifth bankruptcy in his current Executive role? - #19 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:23 PM

Considering that he still maintains several corporate interests, of course some of his companies may go bankrupt. Although, they're probably LESS likely because he has his attention focused elsewhere.

#22 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:34 PM | Reply

In other words Avigdore thinks that if you serve your time for your crime then you are automatically guilty of any accusation in the future. - #21 | Posted by Danni at 2018-09-07 01:31 PM |

I never claimed anyone was automatically guilty of anything, and only a dishonest person would state otherwise. Why do you continue to be dishonest, Danni? I'm not a pack of 'all democrat judges in WV'...you don't have to lie about me as well.

#23 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:36 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"Considering that he still maintains several corporate interests"

Wait... Trump is acting Executive in more than one organization right now???

#24 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:37 PM | Reply

"I'm more a fan of past behavior is a solid indicator of future behavior until proven otherwise."

So you think Trump will get another divorce?

#25 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:40 PM | Reply

So you think Trump will get another divorce? - #25 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:40 PM
I was going to say that I doubt it, as there's certainly few people that would choose to be with him...then I remember the $$$ and his age and health. I'm going 50/50.
A better question would be: Why all the deflection, Snoofy?

#26 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 01:43 PM | Reply

"A better question would be: Why all the deflection, Snoofy?"

I can only speculate why you deflect.

Like when I asked if Trump would oversee bankruptcy of the organization he currently heads as executive, and you deflected to unrelated business interests.

I assume you deflected because you didn't want to answer the question.

#27 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-09-07 01:50 PM | Reply

It's not ONLY about color either, it's class. The rich are afforded the benefit of a doubt way before a poor person in a court of law.

Just look at someone like Jeffery Epstein, a convicted pedophile who spent only 13 months in "prison" but was allowed to leave each day and go to work. Then compare that to what this woman is going to prison for and how long.

#28 | Posted by lfthndthrds at 2018-09-07 01:53 PM | Reply

Just look at someone like Jeffery Epstein...

Bill Clinton whataboutism in 5... 4... 3...

#29 | Posted by REDIAL at 2018-09-07 01:58 PM | Reply

"So you think Trump will get another divorce?"

Or figure out a way to screw some more contractors.

#30 | Posted by danni at 2018-09-07 01:59 PM | Reply

"She was made a felon because she artificially inflated the deduction amounts of her clients while she was preparing their taxes. There is ample proof that she can read.

#17"

isn't that what Trump's accountant does too?

#31 | Posted by klifferd at 2018-09-07 02:19 PM | Reply

She knew she wasn't supposed to vote. The judge told her so upon conviction. And I'm pretty sure that her probation officer did the same. And probably has it in writing. Additionally, most prisons communicate it during the exit de-briefing. If nothing else, her lawyer should have communicated it to her. That said, instead of sending her back to jail, they should send her back for a few days to educate her on what rights she has lost due to her own actions. And then put her probate her back to the street with a couple of years added to her term.

#32 | Posted by bogey1355 at 2018-09-07 02:43 PM | Reply

#32
"She knew she wasn't supposed to vote. The judge told her so upon conviction. And I'm pretty sure that her probation officer did the same. And probably has it in writing."

FTA

"Her supervised release officer testified on the stand that he did not tell Crystal that she was not eligible to vote." Cole added:

#33 | Posted by lfthndthrds at 2018-09-07 03:30 PM | Reply

isn't that what Trump's accountant does too? #31 | POSTED BY KLIFFERD AT 2018-09-07 02:19 PM
What deflection are you talking about?

#34 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 03:45 PM | Reply

"Her supervised release officer testified on the stand that he did not tell Crystal that she was not eligible to vote." Cole added -#33 | POSTED BY LFTHNDTHRDS AT 2018-09-07 03:30 PM
And the less biased article that I linked above in #1 stated:
"An election worker offered to help, he said, and presented her with a provisional ballot, which allows a person to cast a vote as long as they certify they are eligible by signing an affidavit. Small print at the top asks the voter to certify that if she is a felon, she has fully completed her sentence, including supervision or parole of any kind."

#35 | Posted by Avigdore at 2018-09-07 03:49 PM | Reply

Also, I didn't interpret the law in regards to her intention of breaking the law. I was arguing against the original poster who made that claim. Glad to see you backing me up that bayviking is wrong (enough so that his posting was deleted -the statements in italics-, but my response to it was not).

#13 | POSTED BY AVIGDORE

Yes, if that's what he said, then it would definitely be wrong.

#36 | Posted by Sycophant at 2018-09-07 04:31 PM | Reply

he knew she wasn't supposed to vote. The judge told her so upon conviction. And I'm pretty sure that her probation officer did the same. And probably has it in writing. Additionally, most prisons communicate it during the exit de-briefing. If nothing else, her lawyer should have communicated it to her. That said, instead of sending her back to jail, they should send her back for a few days to educate her on what rights she has lost due to her own actions. And then put her probate her back to the street with a couple of years added to her term.

#32 | POSTED BY BOGEY1355

1. "The judge told her so upon conviction."
Show us where you found this and exactly what the Judge said. Because Judges never go into that when someone is convicted.

2. "And I'm pretty sure that her probation officer did the same."
The Probation Officer admitted he didn't. Read the article.

3. "And probably has it in writing."
Probably or are you sure? Generally that's not in paperwork associated with conviction or parole.

4. "That said, instead of sending her back to jail, they should send her back for a few days to educate her on what rights she has lost due to her own actions."
Funny you say this after you made so many mistakes in your own post.

5. "And then put her probate her back to the street with a couple of years added to her term."
Why? Because she made a mistake in interpreting the law? Should we do the same to Trump for every law he has broken?

#37 | Posted by Sycophant at 2018-09-07 04:37 PM | Reply

No one knows any man's intent with regard to any alleged crime. However, most conservatives, believe they are smart enough to discern intent and predisposed to convict everyone charged with anything. Liberals are more inclined to stick with innocent until proven guilty. Its similar to the widely held belief among conservatives that poor people are all lazy, which simply isn't true. Anybody that has ever hired a day laborer knows better, most work hard, some are lazy and others either not too bright or unable to understand what they are supposed to do because they don't understand English. The lazy one's never made the trek across the desert.

avigdore introduces numerous alleged facts through his diatribe, which is not available in the truthdig link. Its unclear whether he is making stuff up, has direct knowledge of provisional ballots in Crystal's county or has some other source of information on Crystal.

No one goes to prison for making a mistake on their tax return. But you can for lying to an IRS auditor. I daresay everyone has exaggerated deductions on their tax returns at some point in their life. But, if you are in the business of filling out tax returns for people who can't be bothered, you need to be extra careful or an inexcusable pattern of behavior will be exposed.

How the IRS determines its the fault of the service provider and not the taxpayer is certainly unreliable, because all errors or accidents have a bell curve distribution consistent with random uncontrollable events for which Courts and Insurance companies will hold you responsible, even though no one can prove we have free will. Its a flaw without a remedy because claiming no one is responsible for their actions falls into the category of unsustainable.

But we need to keep in mind that this woman might not have ever committed the felony she was convicted of. That happens all the time in our imperfect courts, mostly because of prejudicial judgement of motive or intent, which is really indeterminate.

#38 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 06:32 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

#37 | Posted by Sycophant

Doesn't matter what she was told about her voting rights. She voted by a provisional ballot. To to so she completed a form that includes this language at the top;

TO BE COMPLETED BY VOTER: I am a registered voter of this political subdivision and in the precinct in which I'm attempting to vote and have not already voted in this election (either in person or by mail). I am a resident of this political subdivision, have not been finally convicted of a felony or if a felon, I have completed all of my punishment including any term of incarceration, parole, supervision, period of probation, or I have been pardoned.www.sos.state.tx.us (emphasis original)
#38 | Posted by bayviking

Another rambling rant. Are you not aware that virtually every criminal law in this country includes a mens rhea element i.e. "a person commits an offense if the person intentionally and/or knowingly ...". Juries convict people every day, in Republican and Democratic jurisdictions, after evaluating that element. A jury convicted this woman. She testified she didn't know. The form she signed told her. She said I didn't read it. That defense doesn't work. Never has, never will.

#39 | Posted by et_al at 2018-09-07 07:40 PM | Reply

You forgot ignorance of the law is no excuse for violation of the law.

None of which changes the fact that no person can read the mind of another person. Paper trails, of course, are another matter.

#40 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 09:38 PM | Reply

Have you EVER read all those "non-negotiable terms and conditions" that Corporations and Government agencies produce??? as a lawyer you probably have because you could charge someone for it. Guaranteed most people don't, simply because they can be 10-35 pages long and non-negotiable. Without signing them, you can't have a loan or a cell phone or water or power or an apartment.....

Everyone in the law thinks the law is fair, but they are FoS. Like the financial system, the legal system is rigged, The caveat is, if for some strange reason you are able to be heard by the Supreme Court, you might actually get a fair shake, though lately that possibility is evaporating. Otherwise fogetaboutit. The main purpose of the system is to enrich those that inhabit the legal system, nothing else.

#41 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-07 09:55 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

1. Gotta be vigilant about truth and righteousness or who knows what might happen. The entire Code of Federal Regulations might collapse under the weight of this evil-doing lady filling out a provisional ballot.

2. Avigdore, go ---- yourself. And your birth certificate is an apology letter from the condom factory, bitch.

#42 | Posted by madscientist at 2018-09-08 08:11 PM | Reply | Funny: 2 | Newsworthy 1

"And your birth certificate is an apology letter from the condom factory..." - #42 | Posted by madscientist at 2018-09-08 08:11 PM

ZING!

#43 | Posted by Hans at 2018-09-08 08:14 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

The republic of Texas just needs to secede from the US already!

#44 | Posted by aborted_monson at 2018-09-08 08:42 PM | Reply

The republic of Texas just needs to secede from the US already!

#44 | POSTED BY ABORTED_MONSON

Again!

#45 | Posted by WhoDaMan at 2018-09-08 09:42 PM | Reply

Fine, but only after this woman is set free. F Texas

#46 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-09-08 10:04 PM | Reply

I can see these ass lickers shrugging their shoulders and saying, "The law's the law. Even if it is a might draconian at times. But, word 'round the campfire is, it's gonna scare the holy living ---- outa tha coloreds and keep 'em from votin'! Yee Hawwww!"

What a bunch of supercilious ---------- cock-wipes.

#47 | Posted by madscientist at 2018-09-08 10:20 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

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