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Romney asks Virginia AG to probe voter fraud

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Local,Virginia,Steve Contorno

Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney is asking the Virginia attorney general to investigate recent allegations of voter fraud in the state after voter registration forms were sent to dead people and animals.

Attorneys representing Romney contacted Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's insisting that multiple state laws were broken when the D.C.-based Voter Participation Center mailed voter registration forms to ineligible voters, a spokesman for Cuccinelli said.

The center said it mailed more than 200,000 voter registration forms in June. But the Virginia Board of Elections said many of those went to people not eligible to vote, including "dead relatives, minor children, non-citizen relatives, already registered voters, convicted felons, and cats and dogs," Romney's campaign alleged in a letter sent to Cuccinelli's office Tuesday.

"This presents a very significant risk to the proper administration of the upcoming general election," Romeny's attorneys wrote. Virginia is a critical battleground state Romney is hoping to win in November.

The Voter Participation Center, in a letter to Cuccinelli it posted online, said more than 15,000 registration forms have been returned and any errors were a result of incorrect information from vendor lists the non-profit organization uses to send partially filled-out voter registration forms to residents. The center charged that the Romney campaign itself may be breaking the law by interfering with legal efforts to register voters.

"The Romney campaign's request for a probe into over 15,000 returned legal and state-approved registration application forms is part of a blatant and ongoing partisan effort to keep people from voting, " center founder and President Page Gardner.

Cuccinelli's office said it will only take action if asked to by the State Board of Elections, which it has yet to make a request.

"Our job right now is to advise our client, the [State Board of Elections], as they work to ensure the law is complied with and that the voter registration process is not compromised," Cuccinelli spokesman Brian Gottstein said.

scontorno@washingtonexaminer.com

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