A policy brief advising election officials how to verify more mail-in ballots in elections – which break overwhelmingly in support of Democratic candidates – was authored by a Harvard University center funded by Chinese Communist Party-owned companies.
The 26-page brief – “Ensuring All All Votes Count: Reducing Rejected Ballots” – is a product of Harvard’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation.
Paper authors include Jose Altamirano, who worked on Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign as a Deputy Voter Protection Director. Co-author Tova Wang was the former Director of Policy and Research at the Center for Secure and Modern Elections, which is a far-left election advocacy organization tied to George Soros and the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), which received hundreds of millions of dollars from Mark Zuckerberg to influence the results of the 2020 election in favor of Joe Biden.
Both researchers are now affiliated with the Ash Center, which is putting its Chinese Communist Party-sourced funds to work to draft policy blueprints on how states accept and verify mail-in ballots.
These briefs are often cited by left-wing advocacy groups, mainstream media outlets, and even congressional committees to advance electoral policies favorable to Democrats such as universal mail-in voting and “ballot curing.”
Hosted within the Harvard Kennedy School, the Ash Center is funded by several Chinese Communist Party-backed entities including the state-owned enterprise China Southern Power Grid Corp, whose management is “directly appointed by China’s central government.”
Additional donations to the Ash Center come from the New World China Enterprises Project, whose board is composed of virtually all Chinese Communist Party members.
Chairman and Executive Director Cheng Kar-Shun is a former Standing Committee Member of the regime’s Political Consultative Conference, the arm of the party-state that is responsible for conducting billion-dollar, military-backed overseas influence operations in the U.S.
Accordingly, the center has frequently published reports lauding the Chinese Communist Party and its alleged popularity, which are then amplified by Chinese state-run media outlets and regime officials.
A July 2020 report from the Ash Center, for example, claims that the Chinese Communist Party is “as strong as ever” and that “Chinese citizen satisfaction with government has increased virtually across the board.”
For two decades, the center has also hosted the “China’s Leaders in Development Program,” which describes itself as “widely recognized by the Chinese government as one of the best overseas training programs for government officials.”
“This brief studies trends in mail ballot rejection rates in 2020 compared to previous years and how different factors, including sets of policies and policy changes, the political environment, and voter outreach, may have contributed to these changes in an extraordinary election year,” explains a summary.
“Researchers, advocates, and policymakers may find the following areas of study useful to further understand why certain ballots are rejected at given rates and how we can empower voters to cast their ballots and have them count.”
Among the areas the report advises looking into are “organizing,” “election administration,” “signature-matching policies,” and “cure methods.”
The brief has already been cited in a report from the left-wing Center For Public Integrity titled “Thousands of votes won’t count this year over minor absentee ballot errors. NPR also hosted author Altamirano for an interview to praise “ballot curing” while dismissing Republican fears that the process engenders fraud:
“Jose Altamirano, a policy graduate student at the Harvard Kennedy School, says states that do have a process, however, have significantly lower rates of rejected mail ballots.
“Pretty consistently data shows that certain numbers of voters would not have their absentee or mail ballots counted if it weren’t for ballot cure,” he says.
In general, Altamirano says, states with a cure process, ballot tracking and more accessible ballot drop-off policies tend to reject a lower percentage of ballots each election. But “if the state you live in has a more stringent set of hoops to jump through to cast your ballot, the more likely it is that your ballot will be rejected,” he says.
Republican lawmakers, who have been pushing for stricter rules for mail ballots across the country, say these restrictions prevent fraud, though documented cases of voter fraud remain exceedingly rare.”