Leslie Rutledge, the Republican candidate for attorney general, has written County Clerk Larry Crane to ask him to “reinstate” her to the voter rolls after having been removed as Crane was required to do after learning she was registered in another state, Virginia, and apparently the District of Columbia, too.
Significantly, she has not attempted to register to vote. Crane won’t reinstate her because he said she was legally removed. He has said she has time to register. Rutledge apparently doesn’t want to do this (perhaps because it would concede a point that could imperil her original candidacy?).
Note: The letter does not address a serious matter that Republicans have ignored and the Democrat-Gazette has glossed over in its half-hearted blame-Crane coverage of this issue.
How does she explain registering to vote July 3, 2008 as a permanent resident of Washington, D.C., then on Sept. 15, 2008, requesting an ARKANSAS BALLOT to vote absentee in the 2008 general election? She had to affirmatively swear on the absentee ballot application: “I reside within the county in which I am registered to vote.”
The Republican Party, which created voter ID laws to make it harder for the old, poor and minorities to vote, claims it was motivated by voter fraud. To some, voter fraud is claiming residence in multiple states for voting purposes and swearing affirmatively to contradictory statements in the course of obtaining a ballot.
Here’s the non-answer the D-G reported yesterday to this very specific question:
Asked why she voted in Arkansas in 2008 after registering to vote as a Republican in Washington, D.C., Rutledge said she voted absentee in Arkansas because that’s where she knew she was registered.
And what, exactly, did the woman who would be the state’s top legal officer think she was doing when she registered to vote in Washington, D.C. and claimed permanent residence there? Did she not know she was registered?
Here’s that D.C. voter registration.
And here’s her Pulaski County record.
In summary: She has a sketchy job record including departure from the state Department of Human Services after “gross misconduct,” which she won’t discuss. She’s transparently committed fraud in voting by claiming a ballot in a place (Arkansas) in which she was not a resident. Her campaign is not about representing the state, but fighting Obama. She’s made a mockery — and probably broke the law — in coordinating with a shadowy dark money group on advertising that advocates her candidacy. And doesn’t seem to understand the law she’s spit on.
If she were running for state legislature, it would be one thing. But she wants to be the state’s top legal officer. Is it really enough in Arkansas to be an R, no matter how flawed. Republicans are defending all these transgressions by saying they are just criticism instigated by political opponents. Of course it is. Facts once mattered. Perhaps no more.