07 May 2010

Candidate Cries Foul in Lincoln County

A contested primary for state Senate has revived the specter of voter fraud in Lincoln County.

The Lincoln Journal reported that the clerk's office there had already received applications for 825 absentee ballots, while just 265 had been cast in the 2008 primary. That led "a state senator seeking re-election this cycle" to express concern to that newspaper, the article said.

"I have heard tape recorded depositions from several Lincoln County voters who have reported that unnamed persons have visited their homes with envelopes containing absentee ballots that were already marked with my opponents name," the lawmaker, Sen. Ron Stollings, D-Boone, told the Boone Examiner.

Stollings is facing a primary challenge from Delegate Jeff Eldridge, D-Lincoln, in the Senate district that covers both their counties as well as Logan and part of Wayne.

Stollings also shared his concerns with the Lincoln newspaper as well as The Charleston Gazette, Charleston Daily Mail and MetroNews (audio here) , advising them that he's hired a lawyer and plans to file a complaint.

U.S. Attorney Chuck Miller has since told the Daily Mail and MetroNews (with audio) that his office will review the absentee ballot requests.

The Lincoln Journal also reports on Eldridge's response to the situation.

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