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Salon: GOP's dirty deeds of 2006

Published: Tuesday November 21, 2006

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The midterm elections were far from "squeaky clean," according to a rundown of the top ten GOP "dirty deeds" of 2006 compiled by Salon.

"This November there were some old-school dirty tricks that had nothing to do with voting machines or secretaries of state," Alex Koppelman and Lauren Shell write. "An unscientific sample seems to show that most were the product of a party that was desperate for something, anything, that would help it protect its doomed congressional majorities."

According to Salon, "the bulk of this year's murky dealings took place in those tightly contested races -- from the battle for Virginia's Senate seat to House races in Illinois, New York and Connecticut -- that were crucial to control of Congress."

Some of the "dirty tricks" identified by the online news magazine include homeless men being paid to flyer for Maryland's Republican governor (as reported at Raw); a "robocall" campaign, which falsely threatened arrests to Democratic voters ,that the FBI is currently investigating (,also reported at Raw); and "vigilantes" in Arizona who engaged in -- what other activists referred to as -- "classic voter intimidation tactics."

Excerpts from article:


Most people -- well, most people other than Ann Coulter -- try to make sure they're voting in their assigned polling place. But voters in several states had their polling place changed just before the election.

At least, that's what the phone calls told them. Voters in New York, New Mexico and Virginia were told by anonymous callers that their polling places were changed and they were given erroneous directions to new polling places that didn't exist. In New Mexico, at least one call giving incorrect information about a polling place was actually traced back to the local Republican Party. Republicans claimed it was a mistake, but in response the state's Democrats unsuccessfully petitioned a judge to enjoin the state GOP from calling any more Democrats at all.


On Election Day, a posse of three men in Tucson, Ariz., proved that the Wild West still lives. The group, which was three strong, and allegedly composed of two anti-immigration activists, Russ Dove and Roy Warden, carried a camcorder, a clipboard -- on which, they said, was information about a proposed law to make English the state's official language -- and a gun. While one man would approach a voter, holding the clipboard, another would follow, pointing the video camera at them. The third would stand behind, holding his hand to the gun at his hip in what activists on the other side called classic voter intimidation tactics in a precinct one local paper had previously declared the bellwether of the area's Hispanic vote.