A spokesman for Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) vehemently denied that the senator had told a popular liberal author and journalist that he believed the 2004 election was "stolen" in response to queries from RAW STORY.
The author, New York University professor Mark Crispin Miller, told Democracy Now and Air America's "Morning Sedition" the senator had confided in him at a fundraiser Friday, saying he believed the election was stolen after Miller offered Kerry a copy of his new book. Miller said that he was invited to the event by Peggy Kerry, the senator's sister.
Kerry's campaign quickly denounced the claim.
"I know Mr. Miller is trying to sell his book and he feels passionately about his thesis but his recent statements about his conversation with Senator Kerry are simply not true," spokesperson Jenny Backus said. "The only thing true about his recollection of the conversation is that he gave Senator Kerry a copy of his book."
Miller told Democracy Now Kerry "told me he now thinks the election was stolen. He says he doesn't believe he is the person that can be out in front because of the sour grapes question. But he said he believes it was stolen. He says he argues with his democratic colleagues on the hill. He said he had a fight with Christopher Dodd because he said there's questions about the voting machines and Dodd was angry."
Miller was shocked to hear of Kerry's denial.
"I call that contemptible," Miller told RAW STORY. "That's completely false."
"Anyone who knows my work knows that I'm not much interested in commercial gain," he added. "I wrote Fooled Again out of a sense of civic obligation, and I had thought the senator shared that concern with me."
Backus said Miller should be standing behind Kerry's effort to pass the Count Every Vote Act.
"If Mr Miller wants to prevent the problems that happened in Ohio moving forward into 2005 and 2006," she said, "instead of misrepresenting what Senator Kerry said, he should be complimenting Kerry for leading the way in Congress with the Count Every Vote Act to improve voting rights and fund the election reform effort across the country."
Miller replied: "I think, frankly, that he is making a very serious mistake by taking this tack, because as I tried to tell him last Friday night, the only way that he can redeem himself in the eyes of most Democrats is to take the lead on the issue of election reform, and that requires speaking honestly about what happened last year."
Backus said Kerry would have fought to reverse the election's outcome if he believed the election had been stolen.
"Make no mistake, after pouring his heart and soul into the campaign and seeing George Bush continue the mess he created, if the election had been stolen John Kerry would be fighting them today to reverse the outcome," she said.