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FL GOP Fires Romney Consultant's Voter Registration Firm After Fraudulent Forms Reported In Palm Beach County

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We've reported on Sproul many times over the years, as the GOP operative, and former chair of the Arizona GOP and the state's Christian Coalition, pops up again and again in each Presidential Election year. He is hired over and over by the Republican Party, despite years of fraud allegations in multiple states against his organizations, which are said to have routinely changed or entirely destroyed Democratic voter registrations.

He operates as Sproul & Associates as well as Lincoln Strategy Group, among other names, including now, apparently, Strategic Allied Consulting.

And this year, after being hired by the Bush/Cheney campaign in '04 and the McCain/Palin campaign in '08, Sproul was "quietly" hired by the Romney campaign as a political consultant late last year,according to a June report from Lee Fang at the non-partisan Republic Report:

Late last year, Mitt Romney's presidential campaign began paying Nathan Sproul, a political consultant with a long history of destroying Democratic voter registration forms and manipulating ballot initiatives. Sproul, who changed his firm's name from Sproul and Associates to Lincoln Strategies, has received over $70,000 from Romney's campaign ...

Republic Report reviewed disclosures from the Federal Elections Commission. Sproul's Lincoln Strategy Group has received about $71,391 in payments for "field consulting" and "rent & utilities" by the Romney for President Inc. committee from November 30th through March 2nd of this year.

Fang then goes on to highlight what he describes as some of Sproul's "greatest hits" as detailed by ThinkProgress while reporting on Sproul's Lincoln Strategies astroturf work for a so-called "Clean Coal" industry campaign in 2009 [emphasis in original]:

- In Oregon and Nevada, Lincoln Strategies - then known as Sproul and Associates - was investigated for destroying Democratic voter registration forms. The Bush-Cheney 2004 presidential campaign paid Sproul $7.4 million for campaign work. [CNN, 10/14/04; KGW News, 10/13/04; East Valley Tribune, 09/07/06]

In Nevada, people who registered as Democrats with Lincoln Strategies - then known as Sproul and Associates - found their names absent from the voter registration rolls. [Reno Gazette-Journal, 10/29/04]

- During the 2006 midterm elections, Wal-Mart banned Lincoln Strategies for partisan voter registration efforts in Tennessee. The Republican National Committee had hired the firm. [Associated Press, 08/24/06]

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- In Arizona, Lincoln Strategies employed a variety of deceptive tactics - including systematically lying about the bill - to push a ballot initiative to eviscerate the state's clean elections law. [Salon,10/21/04]

- Lincoln Strategies, then employed by the Republican Party, wasbehind efforts to place Ralph Nader on the ballot in states such as Arizona. [American Prospect, 06/25/04]

Despite all of those years of allegations, the McCain campaign went on to hire Sproul in 2008, according to Sam Stein at Huffington Post, who reported at the time:

John McCain's campaign has directed $175,000 to the firm of a Republican operative accused of massive voter registration fraud in several states.

According to campaign finance records, a joint committee of the McCain-Palin campaign, the RNC and the California Republican Party, made a $175,000 payment to the group Lincoln Strategy in June for purposes of "registering voters." The managing partner of that firm is Nathan Sproul, a renowned GOP operative who has been investigated on multiple occasions for suppressing Democratic voter turnout, throwing away registration forms and even spearheading efforts to get Ralph Nader on ballots to hinder the Democratic ticket.
...
That Sproul would come under the employment umbrella of the McCain campaign -- the Republican National Committee has also separately paid Lincoln Strategy at least $37,000 for voter registration efforts this cycle -- is not terribly surprising. Sproul, who has donated nearly $30,000 to McCain's campaign, has been in the good graces of GOP officials for the past decade despite charges of ethical and potentially legal wrongdoing.

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In Fang's report, he goes on to note that "Even former Rep. Chris Cannon (R-UT), during a hearing on voter fraud, admitted that 'the difference between ACORN and Sproul is that ACORN doesn't throw away or change registration documents after they have been filled out.'"

GOP voter registration fraud epidemic continues

As we described earlier today, in our story on the disturbing Colorado GOP voter registration worker video, while Republicans had long been critical of fraudulent voter registration efforts they inaccurately attributed to ACORN, the non-partisan, four-decade old community organizing group (which has since been forced into bankruptcy as a result of the years-long GOP effort to mischaracterize them and their work) there is no evidence, to our knowledge, that any of its tens of thousands of registration workers ever screened out potential registrants from one party or another before allowing them to register, as seen in CO.

Neither is there evidence that any of their workers ever changed party affiliations on registration forms, as is being alleged tonight in Palm Beach County, or destroyed Democratic forms, as has been alleged over the years, as noted by Republican Rep. Cannon.

Moreover, it should be noted that of the handful of ACORN registration workers who submitted fraudulent applications over the years, almost all of those workers were turned into officials by ACORN themselves. The group checked all applications for validity before turning them in, flagged those which appeared to be fraudulent, and then turned them in to officials, along with the names of the workers who had defrauded them.

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Brad Friedman publishes Bradblog.com

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