Democrats are already pouncing on the news of an arrest of a GOP campaign worker accused of dumping filled out voter registration forms in Harrisonburg.
Friday morning, State Senator Don McEachin (D-Henrico) called on Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) to launch a formal investigation into the controversy.
“This is simply too serious an issue," McEachin said in a prepared statement. "Voting is the bedrock of our democracy and we, as Virginians, deserve to know exactly what happened, how widespread the abuse and under whose orders, if any, the individual in question acted."
McEachin and Cuccinelli are long time political adversaries going back to the Attorney General's time in the Senate. On Thursday, Cuccinelli challenged McEachin to a debate on a proposed constitutional amendment regarding eminent domain that will be on the ballot this fall. Cuccinelli supports the measure, McEachin does not.
This morning McEachin called Cuccinelli's debate proposal "grandstanding on the taxpayers dime".
Cuccinelli's office claims McEachin doesn't understand the proper process of investigating an election fraud case. According to spokesman Brian Gottstein, the Attorney General can only launch a state level investigation if he is formally requested to do so by the State Board of Elections.
In this case, the Board of Elections has not made a request for the Attorney General to look into the matter.
McEachin's full statement can be found after the jump.
Senator McEachin Calls on Attorney General to Investigate Discarded Voter Registration Forms
Henrico – Senator A. Donald McEachin (D-Henrico) today called on Attorney General Cuccinelli to conduct a thorough, open and transparent investigation into the recently discovered discarded voter registration forms found in a Rockingham County dumpster. Senator McEachin said, “This is simply too serious an issue. Voting is the bedrock of our democracy and we, as Virginians, deserve to know exactly what happened, how widespread the abuse and under whose orders, if any, the individual in question acted.
“Apparently, the suspect has or had ties to the National Republican Party. Was he perpetrating this under their orders? Is this the only time he has done this? And, how can we be sure that other individuals, also acting in response to Republican demands, have not done the very same action? Is this part of a pervasive pattern of trying to deprive Virginians of their constitutional rights? What other actions, if any, have been taken in pursuit of that egregious goal?
“We have heard a lot from Republicans both in the Virginia General Assembly and across the country about their numerous fears that voters were committing fraud. It certainly looks like, instead, the fraud is being committed by the Republicans on the voters.
“The only way we, as citizens of this Commonwealth, can feel confident that the voting system, and therefore, our democracy is sound, is for there to be a complete, honest, and total investigation into the allegations. This should be done by our Attorney General and his office as the lawyers for the Commonwealth. I call on Attorney General Cuccinelli to open the investigation immediately so that, by Election Day, Virginians can have total faith and confidence in the system as they go to the polls to cast their ballots,” Senator McEachin concluded.