Politics

September 29, 2012

Florida voter-registration scandal spreads

At least 10 Florida counties have now identified suspicious voter registration forms turned in by a firm working for the Republican Party.

By MATEA GOLD, JOSEPH TANFANI and MELANIE MASON Tribune Washington Bureau

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

A woman votes at a fire station in Jupiter, Fla., on Nov. 4, 2008. The Republican Party of Florida has fired a get-out-the-vote firm after learning of questionable new voter registrations submitted in at least 10 Florida counties.

The Associated Press

Bodenstein stressed that elections officials would strive to protect every vote.

"We will not disenfranchise anybody," she said.

But if fraudulent forms changing the addresses of actual voters are inadvertently processed, they could create obstacles at the polls. If someone's address is changed within the same county, they could still cast a ballot once poll workers were able to establish that the voter was in the correct precinct.

"It's another step the clerk, the poll worker and the voter would have to go through in order to cast a vote," Davis said.

Things would get more complicated if a voter's address has been changed to another county. If that were the case, the voter would be forced to cast a provisional ballot, which would be evaluated later in the week by a local canvassing board.

More than 2,000 provisional ballots were cast in Florida in 2008; less than half of those ballots were ultimately counted, according to University of Florida election law professor Daniel Smith.

Strategic Allied is run by an Arizona-based man named Nathan Sproul, who has been dogged by charges in the past that his employees destroyed Democratic registrations. No charges were ever filed.

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