Yes, non-citizens do illegally register and vote – often more than once – and are usually only caught by chance.
That was the case with Victor David Garcia Bebek, who pleaded guilty to voter fraud for illegally voting in three Kansas elections while a citizen of Peru. He was caught after he registered to vote again at his naturalization ceremony.
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach – whose law requiring Kansans to provide proof of citizenship when registering to vote has been blocked by a federal judge – obtained Bebek’s conviction using his authority to prosecute voter fraud cases. Kobach is the only Secretary of State in the country with that authority.
Kobach found that Bebek illegally voted three times: in a 2012 special election and the 2012 and 2014 general elections. He was a Peruvian national at the time who voted in Sedgwick County, according to Kobach.
Kobach said the way the case was discovered because Bebek became a U.S. citizen earlier this year. At his naturalization ceremony, he was offered the chance to register to vote in Sedgwick County.
“This gentleman did so, and then when the Sedgwick County election office went back to the office to enter his information, they found that he had been on the voter rolls since 2011,” Kobach said.
Once again, a check box and the honor system failed to keep an ineligible non-citizen from casting illegal votes.