A Pennsylvania man who pleaded guilty to committing voter fraud in favor of former president Donald Trump during the 2020 election is blaming the COVID lockdown and too much right-wing propaganda for his crime.
On Friday, 70-year-old Bruce Bartman, of Delaware County, Pennsylvania, admitted to casting an illegal ballot for Trump by using his dead mother’s name. Bartman admitted that he registered both deceased women as Republicans in August, and apologized for his actions.
“I was isolated last year in lockdown,” Bartman told Judge George Pagano, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I listened to too much propaganda and made a stupid mistake,” he added.
He pleaded guilty to two felony counts of perjury and one count of unlawful voting after investigators discovered that he used the driver’s license of his dead mother to register her to vote online, and filled out an absentee ballot in her name.
The state’s voting system flagged Elizabeth Bartman’s registration after noting she had been dead for 12 years, but Bartman signed and sent back a letter asserting she was still alive, the Inquirer reported. Investigations slowly revealed that Bartman had successfully committed voter fraud and a formal complaint was brought to the county’s Board of Elections.
Rather than giving him a jail sentence, Pagano sentenced Bartman to five years of probation, stripped him of his right to vote in an election for four years, and made him ineligible to serve jury duty.