Mike Fitzpatrick, challenging Rep. Patrick Murphy in southeastern Pennsylvania’s 8th district, spoke with press this afternoon about the unfolding absentee ballot scandal that’s now been linked to Murphy’s campaign manager, Tim Persico.
At issue is a letter sent to voters across the district from a fictitious “Voter Assistance Office,” underwritten by the Pennsylvania Democratic Party, which instructed voters to return an absentee ballot to a private post office box controlled by Patrick Murphy’s campaign manager, warning recipients that their ability to participate in the election would be at risk if they did not do so.
Fitzpatrick spoke with Battle ‘10 about the existing investigation on a county level into allegations of voter fraud, emphasizing the need to ensure free elections for absentee ballot voters.
“I received a call yesterday from a voter who filed an application, received a ballot, send the ballot in, and who now wants to know whether his ballot will count, or whether his vote will be impounded,” said Fitzpatrick.
Absentee ballots are at risk of being essentially frozen as an investigation proceeds to determine whether more ballots are fraudulent. So far, more than 600 have been rejected as a result of “defects” including incorrect birthdays or mis-matching signatures.
“That is the consequence of the kind of voter intimidation and skirting of election laws that occurs when a campaign like the Murphy campaign insists on violating the Pennsylvania election laws in a federal election.”
“People’s votes will be lost as a result of their actions, [but] I’m going to do everything I can to make sure that doesn’t happen,” Fitzpatrick told Battle ‘10.