Super PAC workers knew about fake Indiana voter registrations: cops

Chuck Goudie Image
Tuesday, November 15, 2016

CHICAGO (WLS) -- In the wake of a contentious presidential election, records have been released detailing a fraud scheme in Indiana that could have involved as many as 34,000 voter registrations.

Search warrants executed in October but just unsealed a week after the election reveal that associates of the liberal-leaning Patriot Majority USA super political action committee accepted voter applications they allegedly knew contained fabricated or forged information.

Records of computers and documents seized from the Indiana Voter Registration Project office in Marion, Indiana, were ordered unsealed Monday by a Marion County judge and obtained by ABC affiliate WRTV in Indianapolis.

IVRP records have shown that employees submitted 34,457 voter registration applications in 56 Indiana counties by late September. In the search warrants, state police investigators stated that voter registration fraud was evident.

In last Tuesday's election, President-elect Donald Trump easily won Indiana's 11 Electoral College votes. He also won the popular vote with 57 percent vs. Hillary Clinton's 38 percent. Mr. Trump's running mate and vice president-elect Mike Pence is the governor of Indiana.

Mrs. Clinton won only four Indiana counties, including Marion County, where much of the registration fraud investigation centered. She also won Lake County in northwest Indiana.

In one search warrant, an Indiana state police investigator provided details of notes found at IVRP's offices. The notes reportedly stated that canvassers submitted voter registration paperwork for underage voters, non-American citizens, family members who live out of state and other dummied up information.

According to the state police officer, he found "applications with phone numbers belonging to a different person other than the person listed on the application, notes indicating the real person was contacted and advised they did not register to vote, notes indicating the no one by the name of the person listed on the application lived at the address, notes indicating that the applications had the same handwriting, notes indicating that the canvasser had registered the same person multiple times, notes indicating that the canvasser had submitted applications with the wrong ZIP codes and used the same address for multiple people."

There was little attempt to cover up the alleged fraud, state police suggest. At one IVRP office in Indiana 119 voter registration applications were found with a sticky note attached that read, "Canvasser filled out every registration in this packet. Every date of birth is invalid."

The I-Team reported last week that IVRP employees were required to register a minimum number of voters every day and, according to court records, they allegedly falsified sign up forms to meet quotas.

Investigators who reviewed documents concluded that "there appeared to be numerous people registered by IVRP who were not of age to vote in the 2016 general election and numerous people who were not citizens of the United States of America."

In a statement released on Tuesday the Indiana Voter Registration Project-subgroup of Patriot Majority USA-continued to deny wrongdoing:

"We are glad that these warrant affidavits have finally been released for public inspection, because they confirm that the Indiana Voter Registration Project was conducted in a professional manner designed to protect both voting rights and the integrity of the state voter file. As the unsealed documents themselves state, the Project maintained records of unverified and incomplete applications, in order to help the County Clerks do their jobs of registering only eligible voters. Several of the so-called questionable applications listed in the warrant were in fact accurate, as proven by the Clerks who verified the information and eligibility of the voters."

WRTV reported that Patriot Majority USA spokesman Bill Buck said the IVRP took several steps above and beyond Indiana's legal requirements, including requiring canvassers to sign voter registration application and not paying canvassers by the form.

Authorities have not filed criminal charges against anyone associated with either affiliated organization.