An Insider Tells All on Voter Fraud

Volunteer for poll monitoring task force to Arutz Sheva: if I hadn't been there, 200-300 votes would have been stuffed into the ballot box.

Shimon Cohen and Tova Dvorin ,

Monitoring votes, Beit Safafa
Monitoring votes, Beit Safafa
Miriam Alster/Flash90

Multiple incidents of voter fraud were reported during elections day last week - including several arrests in Arab communities. 

Arutz Sheva spoke to Yisrael Zelkovitz, a volunteer who served as a member of a volunteer task force funded by the Samaria Residents' Committee at polling stations tasked with uncovering and preventing voter fraud, to find out more about what really happened on elections day. The project was funded with Likud, Jewish Home, and Yisrael Beytenu support.

Zelkovitz stated that he did see incidents of voter fraud, and even caught some suspicious activity on tape - including buying votes and extortion. 

"During the day there were several attempts to cheat, but they were little things - like adding second ballots to envelopes for the United Arab List, and the addition of Joint List ballots to other ballot slip cells [as camouflage - ed.]," he noted. "These small things I remedied to the best of my ability." 

Zelkovitz noted that, at first, people did not question what a religious Jew was doing at an Arab community's ballot-taking panel. A wide range of volunteers from all of the different sectors can typically be seen monitoring polling stations. When he was asked, he simply replied that the money was good. 

However, he did fear losing his focus, at the risk of tainting the elections.

"I didn't even want to use the bathroom, for fear that if I left, someone would stuff the ballot box," he said. 

Later in the day, he caught a major incident, as he was recording some footage of the voting process for archive and review purposes.

"A member from the polling committee approached me and said, 'I'm missing 20-30 votes here, let me put them in and look away," he recounted.

He refused, but the fraudster persisted.

"Then he suggested, let's take a ride, get you something to eat - then I'll take 20-30 votes and you can too," he continued, adding that the fraudster had assumed he'd simply take extra votes for Jewish Home and stuff the ballot box with them. 

"If I hadn't been there, they would have stuffed 200-300 votes in there," Zelkovitz concluded, adding that he believes the few votes were only a ruse. 

He said that during the day the cheating attempts were relatively minor because the police were present outside the polling station and that Likud Youth groups were also helping out with the patrols.

"The relationship during most of the day was fine," he says, emphasizing that the attempt to make the most dramatic move was when the pollsters - all Israeli Arabs - were counting votes with him in a locked room. 

In addition, 5-6 locals tried to vote under false ID, not even hiding what they were doing. 

The scope of the fraud proves the point of the monitoring, Zelkovitz noted, adding hopes that the next election will see a reduction in fraud after Arabs know that there will be monitors at polls.