The Republican Party of Florida is dumping a firm it paid more than $1.3 million to register new voters, after Palm Beach County Elections Supervisor Susan Bucher flagged 106 “questionable” registration applications turned in by the contractor this month.
Bucher asked the state attorney’s office to review the applications “in an abundance of caution” because she said her staff had questions about similar-looking signatures, missing information and wrong addresses on the forms.
The state GOP hired Strategic Allied Consultants of Glen Allen, Va., for “voter registration services” and get-out-the-vote activities. The firm got identical payments of $667,598 in July and August.
“When we learned today about the instances of potential voter registration fraud that occurred in Palm Beach County, we immediately informed the Republican National Committee that we were terminating the contract with the voter registration vendor we hired at their request because there is no place for voter registration fraud in Florida,” said RPOF Executive Director Mike Grissom late Tuesday.
Note: Voter-registration fraud is rare and the fact that it was caught is a sign that it's tough to get phony voters on the rolls at all, let alone get them to vote. It's even tougher to do en masse. This is probably some rogue folks.
That was the explanation given over and over again in 2008, when the liberal group ACORN was signing up voters and employed some people who submitted false registrations. Back then, though, Republicans howled that it was all proof of a widespread scheme to defraud the electorate. There wasn't much real evidence for that. And there isn't here, either. But the irony isn't going away.
Note: The Republican Party of Florida has signed up about 44,000 new voters statewide this election. The Florida Democrats: 200,000