Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Republican Candidate In Arizona Accused Of Voter Fraud


While Republicans trying to justify voter suppression bills continue to struggle to find any actual cases of voter fraud, once again a Republican politician may be the exception that proves the rule.
While voter fraud is exceedingly rare — a person is more likely to be hit by lightning than to commit it — then-Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White (R-IN) was convicted of it earlier this year. Now, a candidate for Pinal County Supervisor in Arizona has dropped out amid questions about who cast ballots on behalf of his long-deceased girlfriend.
The Arizona Republic reports:
A Pinal County supervisor candidate has withdrawn from the race in the wake of voter-fraud allegations involving a former companion who, records show, has continued to vote by absentee ballot in the five years since her death. John Enright, 66, had been seeking the Republican nomination for county supervisor of District 5, an area that includes Apache Junction and Gold Canyon. …
His statement made no mention of the scandal unleashed in an anonymous, undated letter sent several weeks ago to the Pinal County Recorder’s Office. As recently as this year, the letter alleged, someone had been filling out and mailing in absentee ballots addressed to a woman who died on Feb. 3, 2007. The woman, Sheila Nassar, and Enright lived together at the time of her death.
Enright has not been charged with any crime and told the Arizona press “I look forward to learning more about these allegations. If they are indeed formal allegations, I will defend myself. I very much look forward to clearing my name.”
But if Enright was indeed casting ballots in his late girlfriend’s name, he would be guilty of what the Pinal County Recorder called “an absolute act of fraudulent voting” — and a Class 6 felony.
Voter identification laws would have done nothing to prevent the sort of absentee ballot fraud alleged here. And the fact that this is already a felony shows that laws already on the books are clearly sufficient to punish this exceedingly rare crime.

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