Voter group claims Mike Pence is abusing his office to suppress black votes

Voter group claims Mike Pence is abusing his office to suppress black votes
Source: AP
Source: AP

Genuine in-person voter fraud is extremely rare, let alone voter fraud which could throw an election. But Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who also happens to be Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's running mate, agrees with other GOP officials who have turned rumors of voter fraud into a full-blown conspiracy to change the outcome of the vote on Nov. 8 — and a progressive group is calling B.S. on the Indiana State Police's tactics.

Patriot Majority USA will begin running radio, print and digital ads targeted at black voters in the run-up to the election after an Oct. 4 raid on the Indiana Voter Registration Project's headquarters in the state capitol of Indianapolis, the Washington Post reported on Saturday. PMU director Craig Varoga told the Post up to 45,000 mostly black people's voter applications were seized in the raid and he believes they may lose their right to vote on Election Day.

The raid was conducted by the Indiana State Police, reported the Indy Star, but they only confirmed at least 10 of the submitted voter registration forms contained "fraudulent information."

However, Hendricks County Clerk Debbie Hoskins, who is a Republican, told the Star her office found the forms on their own and notified the state police directly.

Vargoa told the Post the project hoped to register 50,000 people. While the Indiana Voter Registration Project has asked the Department of Justice to investigate, the State Police announced "that the investigation had expanded from nine to 56 of the state's 92 counties," the Post wrote.

"Indiana State Police recently shut down our state's largest voter registration program," says one of the ads. "This police raid was under the leadership of Republican Governor Mike Pence. Now 45,000 citizens, almost all African-Americans, could lose the right to vote."

The Trump campaign is currently polling at slightly above Clinton in Indiana, with poll-tracking website FiveThirtyEight currently giving Trump more than 90% chance of winning the state in their polls-plus forecast.

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Tom McKay

Tom is a staff writer at Mic, covering national politics, media, policing and the war on drugs. He is based in New York and can be reached at tmckay@mic.com.

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