The modern antifraud movement, calling for scrutiny at the individual voter level, was spearheaded by Republicans after the hairline-close 2000 presidential election, as journalist Jeffrey Toobin has described at length. A five-year, nationwide voter-fraud investigation by the Bush Justice Department yielded 86 convictions as of 2006 -- some for multiple voting or vote buying, and many of people who claimed not to have realized that their citizenship or criminal record mattered.
McCain adviser Michaelson believes that the real way to prevent stolen outcomes -- or, the perception of them -- is to abolish the partisan oversight systems that prevail in most states. Officials, he said, "are the final barriers to election fraud. But we have districts where it's really hard to find a legitimate Republican or a legitimate Democrat. Even if on paper you have [bipartisan] checks and balances, you really don't."