By Morgan Whitaker
Republicans have been the biggest proponents of the myth of widespread voter fraud in the last two years, using it to justify their unprecedented voter suppression campaign. But in the last few weeks we’ve seen the GOP and their affiliated groups become implicated in the very fraud they claim to want to stop.
In Virginia on Thursday night, a 31-year old Pennsylvania resident named Colin Small has been arrested for destroying voter registration forms in Rockingham County, Virginia. Smalls was employed by Pinpoint, a company that had been hired to register voters for the Republican Party of Virginia.
The story is similar to that of Strategic Allied Consulting, a group that was hired in major battleground states across the country, including Virginia, to do the registration job. That company, owned by Republican Nathan Sproul, was fired after suspicious registration forms submitted by SAC popped up in 10 Florida counties. Sproul’s previous companies have been accused of destroying Democratic registration forms in prior elections.
Sproul’s registration companies were also hired in Ohio, another key battleground state that has seen its fair share of voter suppression. Like Florida, Ohio has a history of voting problems. Ohio voters suffered through long lines on Election Day in 2004. When former Republican Secretary of State Ken Blackwell ran state elections, he was involved in at least a dozen voting-related lawsuits and accused of restricting the number of polling booths in Democratic-leaning districts.
This year, current Secretary of State Jon Husted took up the torch from his Republican predecessor, and worked tirelessly to restrict early voting hours in his state. Tuesday’s Supreme Court ruling stopped him in his tracks, but as many have pointed out, he immediately dictated that counties could only be open for a total of 16-hours on the three days he was legally required to open polls.