Video screenshot, George Silva on Facebook

A fire set in an absentee ballot drop box in Los Angeles County destroyed or damaged an unknown number of ballots Sunday night, because that's where democracy is in 2020. Firefighters responding to the blaze first tried spraying a fire extinguisher into the envelope slot, then ran a hose through it, and then used a power saw to cut through the side of the drop box in front of the Baldwin Park Library. Fire officials say someone started the fire by dropping burning newspaper through the slot for ballots. No suspects have yet been identified.

Baldwin Park Mayor Manuel Lozano said there were between 100 and 200 ballots in the box, and county election officials are working to contact local residents who may have to replace their ballots in the two weeks left before the election.

LA County Supervisor Hilda Solis said Monday that the attempt to set fire to ballots "has all the signs of an attempt to disenfranchise voters and call into question the security of our elections," and golly, we have no idea why anyone would want to do that.


Ballots from the box were last collected at about 10 a.m. Saturday, according to the registrar's office. LA County supervisor Janice Hahn said Monday that all the ballots had been accounted for and that new absentee ballots were being mailed to the affected voters. (And just a reminder: All but five states let voters check the status of absentee ballots online, too.) Hahn called the arson an "attack on our democracy," and added that it was her "understanding that it was malicious; it wasn't just a kid maybe throwing a match in a box. It was some serious vandalism." She has called for all of the county's more than 400 ballot drop boxes to be emptied nightly until Election Day, instead of the current collection schedule of every 72 hours.

Local officials have reported the fire to the state attorney general and to the FBI. Depending on what charges are brought, whoever set the fire could be in a world of criminal trouble; Hahn's office pointed out that a notice on all the official drop boxes states that tampering with ballots is a crime, and that voting fraud is a felony that could result in up to three years in prison.

The fire in the official drop box follows last week's fuckery by the California Republican Party, which set up unattended, non-secure ballot drop boxes in locations around the state, complete with illegal signs calling them "Official" drop boxes. California Secretary of State Alex Padilla sent the state GOP a cease and desist order, but the Republicans said neener neener, they wouldn't stop collecting ballots because they think it's legal under state law. (It's not.) Padilla issued a statement Friday saying the state GOP's defiance was mostly bluster, and that the Republicans had in fact agreed in writing to no longer "use the unstaffed, unsecured, ballot drop boxes that are misleadingly labeled to look official," and that the party's "public statements are simply meant to deflect from what they have to agreed to in writing."

So, problem solved, we guess?

As for the fire in the collection box in Baldwin Park, Internet detectives on Twitter and in the comment sections of Gateway Pundit and Breitbart offered multiple theories of what might have happened, ranging from antifa to a homeless person obviously having been paid to set the fire, to a false flag attack by Democratic operatives meant to make people who have been screaming about voter fraud look bad. The Gateway Pundit's Cristina Laila sternly warned readers that the only sane conclusion is "Vote in person," presumably because terrible people are out there burning absentee votes. Commenters confidently explained the fire had to be a "Deep state psyop to undermine the election," and that "ALL mail in ballots (as opposed to absentee ballots) should be contested - the post office offers no proof of chain of possession." Another explained that the IRS had determined in 2016 that "over 3 million dead people had voted," because the IRS is apparently involved in voting security now.

Somehow, none of them could really explain why Democratic ratfuckers would burn ballots in a mostly Democratic-voting area, apart from that just proving how depraved "communists" are.

You have to admit they have a compelling case: The deliberate burning of absentee ballots, likely by someone who objects to voting by mail, proves that voting by mail just isn't safe.

[WaPo / LAT / KCAL-TV / KABC-TV]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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