Ballot Controversy Stirs Up Problems

The Republican party in Bucks County is accusing Democrats of playing dirty politics in the congressional race between Mike Fitzpatrick and Patrick Murphy.

Local Republicans say the county's Board of Elections has been flooded with hundreds of false applications for absentee ballots.

"Absolute lies! They made up the excuses, they made up birth dates. I mean a sloppy job I will tell you that," said Pat Poprik, the vice chairman of the Republican party in Bucks County.

Poprik says the false applications for absentee ballots started arriving at the Bucks County Board of Elections around October 13th.

Some of the applications being rejected by workers for wrong birth dates, other people signing for voters and other reasons.

"We talked to a man that was in the hospital the day his was signed. He had knee surgery replacement and his says he's traveling on election day," said Poprik

The letters telling voters to apply for an absentee ballot were sent by a group called PA Victory 2010. And according to a petition filed by Republicans with the board of election, when the applications were returned, only two people were allowed to pick up the applications from a post office box; A volunteer working for Congressman Patrick Murphy and a Murphy campaign manager.

Candidate Mike Fitzpatrick says the incumbent needs to answer these allegations.

"What did he know about the illegal scheme? When did he know it? What is his level of involvement?," asks Fitzpatrick.

Murphy didn't answer those questions but told supports he will be on the attack.

"It's sickening that the Republican controlled board of elections would abused it's power to deny hundreds of Democrats their right to vote," Murphy replied.

Those working for the Bucks County Republican party say they also send out applications for absentee ballots as well. Now they tell 69 News the only difference is when their applications get sent back they go to the Bucks County Board of Elections, not a P.O. Box in Bristol.

"If they had sent the mailing right to the court house we wouldn't have half this problem," said Poprik.

The Bucks County Board of Election will have a hearing about the applications on Friday.

Until then workers are looking for more questionable applications. So far they've thrown out 900.

"Man up if you did say you did it," said Poprik. "They were over-aggressive I apologize and we can move on."

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Allentown, PA 18102


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