In a scathing letter to Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R), Congressman Ted Deutch (D-FL19) is demanding the Governor "immediately appoint a bipartisan task force" to investigate and take action on the "the large and apparently growing voter fraud scandal engulfing the Republican Party of Florida."
"Given the explicitly partisan nature of this scandal, assurances must be provided to all Floridians that the investigation into these allegations is thorough and fair," Deutch writes in his letter (posted in full below), before criticizing Scott for his silence, to date, on the matter.
"So far, your inaction in the face of this scandal suggests that you are putting partisanship ahead of the integrity of Florida’s elections," charges the Congressman.
"Allegations surrounding Strategic Allied Consulting alarmingly suggest that Democratic forms were destroyed by its workers and only Republican forms were submitted. Further allegations exist that workers were illegally given quotas of new voters to register, that many forms had similar handwriting with incorrect information, and that even deceased individuals were registered."
"Even more disturbing is the possibility that the fraud discovered in Florida really just scratches the surface of a national strategy executed by Strategic Allied Consulting at the direction of the Republican National Committee and Governor Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign."
Deutch slams Scott in the missive for his "shocking and hypocritical" lack of action since the GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal first surfaced early last week, when we first reported on more than 100 apparently fraudulent registration forms submitted in Palm Beach County, FL, by Strategic Allied Consulting, the firm owned by longtime controversial GOP operative Nathan Sproul. The firm accounted for the Republican Party of Florida's top expenditure so far this year. The FL GOP paid the firm some $1.3 million for voter registration across the state over the past two months.
The FL GOP says they hired the firm --- headed up by Mitt Romney's paid political consultant, whose companies have a long history of allegations against them for destroying Democratic voter registrations in multiple states --- at the request of the Republican National Committee. Like the FL GOP, the RNC, which paid the firm $3 million for voter registration in five key battleground states since July, fired Strategic late last week.
Since then, apparently fraudulent registration forms, many with addresses changed so that voters could be disenfranchised come November 6th, have been discovered in at least 11 FL counties, along with charges of destroyed Democratic registration forms surfacing in Colorado and Nevada. The company was employed in those states as well as North Carolina and Virginia to carry out voter registration. Sproul has said the RNC asked him to create the new company to hide his ownership of it.
Deutch pulls no punches in his criticism of the Florida Governor, who has otherwise pretended to be concerned about voter registration fraud in the Sunshine State, in his letter today:
Deutch goes on to list five actions the Congressman says are needed "immediately" to help contain the scandal, restore confidence in the state's electoral process, and help to "prove that you care about voter fraud even if involves the Florida Republican Party, the Republican National Committee, and Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign."
(One gentle note to the good Congressman, since we'd hate to incur his wrath and receive a similarly scathing letter: The concern in the state of Florida right now, and in the other states where the RNC's company was operating, is voter registration fraud, not "voter fraud." There is no evidence of fraud by any voters at this time. They are doing fine and have borne the brunt of more than enough inappropriate accusations already this year. Please leave them alone. Thank you.)
The complete text of Congressman Ted Deutch's 10/1/12 letter to Gov. Rick Scott, follows in full below...
The Honorable Rick Scott
Governor, State of Florida
400 S. Monroe St.
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001
Dear Governor Scott:
In light of the large and apparently growing voter fraud scandal engulfing the Republican Party of Florida, I urge you to immediately appoint a bipartisan task force to investigate these allegations and ensure that the integrity of our voting rolls will not be compromised by Strategic Allied Consulting’s deliberately fraudulent voter registration operations. I also urge you to ensure that false registrations submitted by Strategic Allied Consulting do not remain on our rolls, and that you immediately investigate whether any employees involved in this scandal are still working for the Republican Party to register voters in Florida.
Given the explicitly partisan nature of this scandal, assurances must be provided to all Floridians that the investigation into these allegations is thorough and fair. So far, your inaction in the face of this scandal suggests that you are putting partisanship ahead of the integrity of Florida’s elections.
As you know, Strategic Allied Consulting was hired by the Florida Republican Party and paid $1.3 million to register voters in Florida. In Palm Beach County alone, 106 possibly fraudulent forms have already been identified. Now, ten additional counties across the state have also reported suspicious voter registration and change of address forms associated with Strategic Allied Consulting. Allegations surrounding Strategic Allied Consulting alarmingly suggest that Democratic forms were destroyed by its workers and only Republican forms were submitted. Further allegations exist that workers were illegally given quotas of new voters to register, that many forms had similar handwriting with incorrect information, and that even deceased individuals were registered.
Even more disturbing is the possibility that the fraud discovered in Florida really just scratches the surface of a national strategy executed by Strategic Allied Consulting at the direction of the Republican National Committee and Governor Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. Strategic Allied Consulting was also paid nearly $3 million by the Romney campaign and the Republican National Committee for their work this election cycle. This firm was hired in Florida and elsewhere despite the fact that its founder, Nathan Sproul, has previously run firms accused of major improprieties, including trashing registration forms filed by Democratic voters. Public reports and videos also exist of employees of Strategic Allied Consulting saying that they will only register only Republican voters.
Governor Scott, we are on the cusp of a Presidential election. Disturbing reports suggest that professionally coordinated voter fraud occurred in Florida that is potentially massive in scale. Your silence and inaction are shocking and hypocritical considering you have spent the last year in an expensive and highly controversial effort to purge legitimate citizens from our rolls in a supposed search to find “voter fraud.” Your efforts to purge 182,000 individuals from our voting rolls continued until we discovered that the list was nakedly partisan and so error-ridden that it contained the names of tens of thousands of legitimate voters, including small business owners and a decorated World War II hero. Now, when an actual voter fraud scheme has apparently been discovered in our state, there is neither room nor time for the partisan allegiances that typically guide your Administration’s actions.
Governor Scott, you now have an opportunity to prove that you care about voter fraud even if involves the Florida Republican Party, the Republican National Committee, and Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. I urge you to immediately take the following actions:
1) Work directly with all of supervisors of elections to ensure only legitimate voters were registered by Strategic Allied Consulting;
2) Appoint a bipartisan task force to investigate what, if any, damage has been done by these allegedly fraudulent registration activities, and the potentially criminal practices undertaken by Strategic Allied Consulting, Mr. Sproul, and every employee of this organization who registered voters in Florida;
3) Ensure that any individual who assisted or coordinated with Strategic Allied Consulting’s efforts is temporarily barred by the State from voter registration activities pending the outcome of a full investigation into the potentially criminal voter registration efforts undertaken by this organization;
4) Locate the daily logs of every Strategic Allied Consulting worker in order to facilitate supervisors of elections to identify all records submitted by Strategic Allied Consulting for independent verification; and
5) Establish an outreach campaign to identify and alert independent and Democratic voters who may have attempted to register with Strategic Allied Consulting only to have their registration forms destroyed and coordinate with the supervisors of elections to assist in correctly registering all eligible voters who may have been impacted by this scandal.
I look forward to working with you directly to contain and repair the potentially devastating damage to the integrity of our election system.
MEMBER OF CONGRESS