By Gregory B. Hladky
1:48 PM EDT, September 13, 2012
Looks like Connecticut’s Republican Party is joining the national right-wing campaign against voter fraud, despite the fact there’s been only one confirmed case of Election Day fraud at Connecticut’s polls in the past 15 years.
A flyer mailed out to Connecticut GOP types this week asks them to volunteer to help out “TrueTheVote.org” during this November’s elections.
“The Connecticut Republican Party is teaming up with TrueTheVote.org in order to fight voter fraud and provide ballot integrity during the 2012 election cycle,” the flyer reads in part.
Turns out the “State Leader” for True The Vote in Connecticut is none other than Chris Meek, now vice-chairman-at-large for the state Republican Party. Potential volunteers are asked to contact him via his state GOP email account.
True The Vote has drawn national attention for its lobbying for more restrictive voter photo ID laws across the nation and has been linked to other right-wing groups that are targeting alleged voter fraud across the nation. True The Vote activists claim they now have trainees in at least 35 states.
Democrats and liberal activists claim these efforts are little more than a campaign designed to disenfranchise large numbers of legitimate voters, and that True The Vote’s plans to station observers at the polls – often in minority precincts - is simple intimidation.
Such critics point to studies and the opinions of elections experts that found voter fraud across the nation is actually extraordinarily low.
In Connecticut, according to a spokesman for the Secretary of the State’s Office, there has been only one confirmed case of voter fraud at the polls in the past 15 years.
“A voter in Hartford attempted to vote twice in two different municipalities,” says Av Harris, a spokesman for the agency responsible for conducting and monitoring Connecticut elections.
True The Vote was created Texas in 2009 by organizers from a Houston-based Tea Party outfit called the King Street Patriots. Those groups’ activities have triggered lawsuits and at least one judicial decision in Texas that it’s volunteer campaign amounted to a contribution to state Republicans that violated that state’s campaign finance laws.
Spokesmen for True The Vote deny they’ve attempted to intimidate anyone and claim they are completely non-partisan.
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