FACT CHECK: Viral Image Claims To Show Crates Of 2020 Mail-In Ballots Abandoned On The Side Of The Road
An image shared on Facebook over 1,100 times purportedly shows several crates of mail-in ballots cast for President Donald Trump left on the side of the road.
The image, which dates back to 2018, shows mail abandoned by a mail carrier, not Trump ballots.
Misinformation related to mail-in ballots and voter registration has circulated on social media as Election Day approaches. In recent weeks some social media users have shared a viral image that purportedly shows crates full of mail-in ballots cast for Trump abandoned on the side of a road.
“Boy oh boy, there (sic) finding thrown away Trump ballets (sic) everywhere now, California, Texas, n Pennsylvania,” the image’s caption reads. “How does the USPO explain this?” (RELATED: Viral Image Claims Ice Agents Will Be At All Polling Stations On Election Day)
Through a reverse image search, however, Check Your Fact found that the image is actually from an incident that took place in 2018 in Pennsauken, New Jersey. A resident of Camden, New Jersey, discovered the mail on the side of the road and later posted a photo of it on social media, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
It does not appear that mail-in ballots were among the abandoned mail. Had the mail bins contained hundreds of mail-in ballots, media outlets would have included that in their reports, yet none seem to have done so.
In addition, the pictured mail was scheduled for delivery in August 2018 from the Roxborough Station Post Office in Philadelphia, Special Agent Scott Balfour of the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General said, according to NJ.com. Mail-in ballots in New Jersey for the midterms had to be sent out by Sept. 22 that year, per New York public radio station WNYC.
This is not the first time social media users have claimed an image shows discarded 2020 mail-in ballots. In late September, Check Your Fact debunked a similar post that falsely claimed to show unopened mail-in ballots for the upcoming November election in a San Francisco dumpster.