In a party line vote the Atlantic County Freeholder Board passed a resolution sponsored by Freeholder At-Large Joe McDevitt calling on Governor Jon Corzine to conditionally veto the Vote by Mail Act until the legislature strengthens the legislation to prevent absentee and messenger ballot fraud.
?The June 2nd Primary showed that the Calloway organization is still alive and well in Atlantic City,? said Freeholder McDevitt. ?Now is not the time to liberalize our election laws and make it easier for groups like the Callaway?s and ACORN to further undermine something as fundamental to our Democracy as our election process.?
Freeholders took specific issues with portions of the legislation which would do away with the requirement that those requesting messenger ballots be sick or confined to their homes, only limit the number of ballots one person can carry to ten and allow for ?friends? to request ballots on your behalf for this and every future election.
?Limiting the number of messenger ballots that any one person can carry to ten is not anywhere near strict enough to clamp down on the rampant fraud taking place in Atlantic City. In fact this legislation would likely have the inverse effect of making organizations like the Callaway?s even larger,? said Freeholder Chairman Jim Curcio. ?I can not possibly foresee any legitimate reason why limiting the number to one or even two messenger ballots would not be sufficient to ensure that anyone sick or confined to their home on Election Day would still be able to vote.?
The Vote by Mail Act is sitting on the Governor?s desk and he is expected to make a decision as to whether or not to sign the legislation into law in the coming days.
?We need a Governor who understands the urgency of the situation here in Atlantic City and the importance of ensuring honest and clean elections,? said Freeholder At-Large Frank Giordano. ?By putting Craig Callaway behind bars Chris Christie has already done more to ensure free and fair elections in Atlantic County than Corzine and the Democrats have during their tenure in Trenton.?
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