News and Tribune

Clark County

October 12, 2006

GOP head alleges voting laws violated

Election Board to address complaints today, next week

Clark County Republican Chairman Glenn Murphy Jr. has submitted a formal complaint to the county’s Election Board, claiming four potential irregularities with election-related issues.

Murphy submitted a letter to the Election Board on Wednesday alleging: absentee ballots are not stored in accordance with state law; that his personal voter registration was deleted; that absentee ballots are being accepted from third parties without proper affidavits; and that candidates have been allowed to loiter outside Voter Registration, where early absentee voting is taking place.

“I just wanted to take care of all of those issues at one time,” Murphy said.

Regarding the first two issues, Murphy is claiming that County Clerk Keith Groth and his staff are either ignorant of or have willfully ignored state law. Murphy specifically states that David Abbott, a Democrat nominee for County Council, has been allowed to submit applications for absentee ballots without filling out state-mandated affidavits.

“It looks like a malicious political attack to me,” Groth said. “We’ll have a meeting and follow up on it.”

During a Wednesday evening telephone interview, Groth said he and fellow Election Board member John Montgomery would host an emergency meeting at 11 a.m. today to address the issue of absentee-ballot security. Murphy’s other concerns will likely be reviewed during a meeting that will take place next week, Groth said.

Since 1986, state law has required that completed absentee ballots be secured by two locks, the Democrat and Republican members of the Election Board maintaining one key each.

“Glenn indicated his biggest concern was that he wanted a box with two locks on it for absentee ballots,” Groth said. “If he wants two locks, we’ll get two locks. If he wants four locks, we’ll get four locks.”

Murphy also claims that his voter registration was purged, based on a notification from Monroe County that he is registered to vote there. Murphy said he has not lived there since his college days and questions whether the deletion of his registration — which has since been restored — was done in accordance with state law.

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