Kentucky attorney general's office gets fewer election-fraud complaints

bestep@herald-leader.comMay 20, 2010 

There were far fewer calls to a state election-fraud hotline Tuesday than during the last election with county offices on the ballot, according to Attorney General Jack Conway's office.

There were 116 calls from 43 counties between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. during the primary Tuesday, down from 350 in the 2006 primary vote, according to a news release. There were 24 calls to the hotline in the 2007 primary and 63 in the May 2008 election.

The number typically goes up in years with races for judge-executive, sheriff and other local offices on the ballot, in part because there are many more candidates seeking office.

Most of the calls received Tuesday involved allegations of people buying or selling votes; questions about election procedures or officers; or complaints about candidates' supporters working too close to polling places.

On Election Day, Secretary of State Trey Grayson's camp complained that supporters of Rand Paul, his opponent in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate, were intimidating voters. Paul's campaign had volunteers doing exit polling outside voting places in many areas. Some also asked to inspect voting machines early in the day.

There were only three complaints to the vote-fraud hotline about exit polling, however, and one about disrupting the polls, according to the release from Conway's office.

Officials with the state Board of Elections reported getting a number of calls about Paul supporters. They said they spoke with the Paul camp, and the complaints dropped off. A spokesman for Grayson said he did not anticipate any further action on those complaints.

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