Fried: Thank You, Alvin Bragg, for Exposing the Glaring Defect in America's Justice System
Times have been tough for Alvin Bragg lately, but I want to give him some credit. As he clumsily strikes out at a former U.S. president, he reminds us all of a glaring defect in America’s judicial system: selective and abusive prosecutions.
Other aspects of the judicial system are far from perfect. There are judges who are biased and poorly trained, and there are defendants who suffer with low-quality defense attorneys.
But selective prosecution is where the inequities are greatest. Every day in America, prosecutors decide to let some criminals go free while prosecuting others for the same offenses.
We all saw this with the Jan. 6 “insurrectionists.” Many were put in prison for months or even years without being charged. And when they were found guilty in a courtroom, they received long sentences.
But seven months earlier there was another “insurrection.” It was at the White House instead of the Capitol. It took place over three days instead of three hours, and it involved lethal Molotov cocktails — not just flagpoles. Over 100 law enforcement officers (Secret Service and U.S. Park Police) were injured as rioters breached the outer perimeter of White House fencing in an effort to storm the White House. They set fire to a nearby church and drove the president to take refuge in the White House bunker.
What happened to those violent insurrectionists? Practically nothing.
Here is a Washington Post report dated June 1, 2020: “D.C. police said they made 106 arrests from Saturday through early Monday, including dozens involving charges of felony rioting. But when the arrestees appeared in Superior Court on Monday, the U.S. attorney’s office dismissed rioting charges against most of the defendants. A handful still face that count.”
I guess Lady Justice peeks out from her blindfold to see if you are a good insurrectionist or a bad one.
Regarding the case brought by Bragg against President Donald Trump, there is no need to dwell on it: Even MSNBC pundits know it is a joke. That is evident from the glum expressions on their faces.
However, in regard to the 2020 election, many people don’t realize how much the fraud narrative was shaped by biased county prosecutors. When you hear that there was no fraud in the 2020 election, it is largely due to the unwillingness of county DAs to investigate such matters.
Before he becomes a crime statistic, the election fraudster must be caught. That is unlikely given our use of mail-in ballots and weak identification laws. But even if he is caught, will the county district attorney prosecute him? Absolutely not. As a result, the election fraudster will never become a statistic.
Evidence from Florida
In 2021, the Public Interest Legal Foundation asked several Florida counties how many referrals they made to prosecutors for potential election law violations during or just before the 2020 election.
There were 156 referrals, and the counties making the most were Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach. Those referrals involved double voting, vote-by-mail violations, and non-citizen registration and/or voting.
Of the 156 cases, how many were prosecuted? Zero! Why was that? Well, it could be due to a shortage of law enforcement and prosecutorial manpower, or it could be that big cities have very ideological prosecutors who don’t believe these are serious crimes worthy of their time and resources.
Solution: a dedicated investigative force
In Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis came up with a good solution to the problem of inactive county prosecutors: a special agency dedicated to the investigation of election crimes. It is called the Office of Election Crimes and Security and is under the direction of the Florida secretary of state.
The office was created in August 2022, and by the time of its first annual report on Jan. 15, 2023, it had made great strides.
There were 1,094 individuals who had allegedly voted illegally in the 2020 election and 1,177 people who, it appears, voted in Florida and in another state in the same election. For the most part, these people were referred to law enforcement for criminal investigation. In addition, the OECS found that a total of 3,077 people were illegally registered by several organizations. That resulted in thousands of dollars in fines.
A potentially very big OECS case came out of Orange County in October. A Democratic whistleblower stepped forward to make serious charges about a multi-year illegal operation related to the collection of third-party ballots. That operation, which took place in the Orlando area, involved left-wing organizations and payments to political activists of $10 per ballot. The OECS referred the matter to the Florida State Police for further criminal investigation.
All of that was accomplished in just five and a half months, and remember: For every identified lawbreaker, there are probably several more who go undetected.
Of course, the establishment media refuse to be impressed, and they produce headlines like these: “DeSantis’ election police have largely flopped,” or “Florida election police come up empty.” What else can they do? For two years they have been pretending there was no fraud in the 2020 election. If there was no fraud, how is it possible for DeSantis to find fraudsters?
But speaking of flops and coming up empty, let us return to the hero of this story: Alvin Bragg. We owe him thanks for teaching us just how uneven, unfair and unequal prosecutors can be. It is too bad, though, that he will humiliate himself in the process.
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