A key Republican in Arizona’s largest county says he’s got video evidence of the kind of abuses that show state’s desperate need for voting reform.
A. J. LaFaro, chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Committee, obtained surveillance video shot at a Phoenix elections office during the state’s Aug. 25 primary that he says shows a liberal group activist “stuffing the ballot box” full of absentee votes.
“What is captured on the tape demonstrates the end result of what we believe to be vote fraud,” LaFaro told the Daily Caller.
The incident occurred during an extended lunch break, when the downtown elections processing office was almost empty, said LaFaro, who remained at his post as an election monitor. The man – wearing the T-shirt of a liberal activist group called Citizens for a Better Arizona — entered with a large box of ballots.
The 8-minute surveillance video has no audio, but LaFaro said the man did not appreciate LaFaro keeping an eye on things.
“Stop watching me,” the man said, according to LaFaro. “You’re annoying me.”
LaFaro said when he pointed out that one of the ballots the man was trying to cast wasn’t sealed, the man demanded to know who he was.
LaFaro said he identified himself and his position with the Maricopa County GOP and asked the man to identify himself.
“Go f*** yourself!” the man said, according to LaFaro. “I don’t have to tell you who I am.”
The activist’s attitude was “militant” and “threatening” LaFaro told the Daily Caller – at one point telling LaFaro “go f*** yourself, gringo” – but what the confrontation really showed was how riddled with potential fraud Arizona’s election laws are.
LaFaro said one way large numbers of ballots like those the activist brought in could be collected is through “ballot parties,” which are basically events where voters are fed and given liquid refreshments while they fill out ballots for candidates activists recommend.
Such practices, which can make a mockery of the idea of the “secret ballot,” would have been illegal under an election reform law the state Legislature passed in 2013 but was forced to repeal this year.
Though LaFaro acknowledged that technically no crime might have been committed under Arizona election law, he said the video demonstrates how widespread the practice of “vote harvesting” is – and how sorely election reforms are needed, like the one liberals oppose whether they’re in the street or in the White House.
“This is a smoking gun that ballot harvesting actually does happen,” LaFaro told the Daily Caller.
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