CHAPTER TWO - OFFENSE CONDUCT


PART H - OFFENSES INVOLVING INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS


2.      POLITICAL RIGHTS


§2H2.1.     Obstructing an Election or Registration

(a)      Base Offense Level (Apply the greatest):

(1)       18, if the obstruction occurred by use of force or threat of force against person(s) or property; or

(2)       12, if the obstruction occurred by forgery, fraud, theft, bribery, deceit, or other means, except as provided in (3) below; or

(3)       6, if the defendant (A) solicited, demanded, accepted, or agreed to accept anything of value to vote, refrain from voting, vote for or against a particular candidate, or register to vote, (B) gave false information to establish eligibility to vote, or (C) voted more than once in a federal election.


Commentary

Statutory Provisions:  18 U.S.C. §§ 241, 242, 245(b)(1)(A), 592, 593, 594, 597, 1015(f); 42 U.S.C. §§ 1973i, 1973j(a), (b).  For additional statutory provision(s), see Appendix A (Statutory Index).

Application Note:

1.      If the offense resulted in bodily injury or significant property damage, or involved corrupting a public official, an upward departure may be warranted.  See Chapter Five, Part K (Departures).

Background:  Alternative base offense levels cover three major ways of obstructing an election:  by force, by deceptive or dishonest conduct, or by bribery.  A defendant who is a public official or who directs others to engage in criminal conduct is subject to an enhancement from Chapter Three, Part B (Role in the Offense).

Historical Note:  Effective November 1, 1987.  Amended effective November 1, 1989 (see Appendix C, amendment 168); November 1, 1995 (see Appendix C, amendment 534); November 1, 2003 (see Appendix C, amendment 661).