Maine’s Secretary of State released his findings Wednesday from an investigation into potential voter fraud and that report shows barely any evidence of wrongdoing. Secretary of State Charles Summers says his investigation of possible voter fraud didn’t turn up much. But he says it points to Maine’s election system need for an overhaul. “We have a situation in the state of Maine that if we don’t try to modernize our election practices and procedures, it will eventually lead us down the road where something breaks down,” Summers told reporters in his office Wednesday.
Summers report shows 77 students were found to have simultaneously registered in Maine and another state but that’s not necessarily illegal. “What I said was there were 77 students in both Maine and another state. It is fraud if they intentionally did that. It’s very difficult to prove it,” Summers said adding it most likely would not be prudent to even try prove that intent.
Republican Party Chairman Charlie Webster claimed to have uncovered more than 200 cases of potential voter fraud committed by college students in Maine. Summers says five were found to have voted in Maine and another state the same year – but not in the same election. A driver’s license fraud investigation found one non-citizen, who’s left the United States.
Summers says 84% of the potential fraud cases were due to clerical errors and nearly 80% of the errors took place on election day, which shows the need to keep Maine’s new law that does away with election day voter registration. Secretary of State Summers was a key part of drafting the legislation that would get rid of same day voter registration.
David farmer, who works for the campaign looking to repeal the ban on same day voter registration, says summers announcement is a political stunt. “100% politics,” Farmer told reporters in the hall outside the Secretary of State’s office. “There’s no question in my mind that this show today was about the people’s veto.”
Farmer says there’s nothing wrong with Maine’s election practices. “As soon as he provides some evidence of a problem I think we can consider solutions,” he said adding, “our elections are well run and efficient. And if you look around the country at the types of problems we’ve seen on election day that does not happen here.”