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TAG | State Auditor
Severson says: Thousands of “ghosts” voted in the 2008 Senate Election
“When you take a look at the analysis afterward, there was a private entity… privately funded entity that did the hard research on that and came up with 6224 names that they could not figure out where those people lived or who they were, where these votes came from…”
(Dan Severson Interview “On the Way with Paul Ridgeway” Radio Show 10.14.14)
In November 2010, a report titled, “Facts about Ineligible Voting and Voter Fraud in Minnesota” was released. The report’s findings were based on data for Minnesota County Attorneys.
The report found that only 26 people had been convicted of voter fraud in the 2008 election. That comes to 0.00089 percent of the votes cast in 2008.
“Minnesota County Attorneys Association’s executive director, John Kingrey, says the massive reports of voter fraud in the 2008 election were ‘widely overstated’ and ‘frivolous.’
John Kingrey said about the Minnesota Majority list that was investigated by county attorneys:
“It was just a lot of work given to a very poor list,” he said. ‘Very, very few have been prosecuted.” (Minnesota Independent, “County attorneys: Minnesota Majority reports on voter fraud ‘frivolous’” November 29, 2010)
While speaking at a 2014 tea party event, Dan Severson still claims in 2010 there was voter fraud in Crow Wing County – even though the Crow Wing County Attorney did not find fraud.
“It was 2010 during that Secretary of State race there was an incident up in Crow Wing County. I’m not sure how many of you remember that. I got a call that night it was about that very thing. There were some adults; it was an adult daycare facility that had been bused in there. And it was somebody who was not partisan at all. He was a veteran. He saw this stuff going on and he just went irate.” (Dan Severson remarks to the West Metro Tea Party Meeting, June 24, 2014)
On December 3, 2010 Crow Wing County Attorney announces he found no evidence of voter fraud.
“A prosecutor in north-central Minnesota says he won’t file charges in a complaint that two disabled voters had their ballots filled out by a group home worker. Crow Wing County Attorney Don Ryan says there’s no evidence the worker influenced the clients’ votes.
Ryan says the voters filled out their absentee ballots, and the worker merely darkened the ovals so scanning machines would read them.” (Associated Press, “Minn. Prosecutor Finds No Evidence of Voter Fraud” December 3, 2010)
Daily Double Talk from Double Talkin’ Dan Severson
Severson says County Attorneys should be indicted
“There needs to be a strengthening of the statute, and county attorneys need to be indicted under Statute 201.275 for failure to perform their duties”.
(Severson testimony before the Senate Local Government and Elections Committee regarding Photo ID legislation, March 22nd, 2011)
Severson says he now wants to work with County Attorneys on a panel he creates
“…if there are issues of fraudulent voting or accusations, we refer to a panel of county attorneys we would put together basically to say is it credible complaint or is it frivolous? If it is frivolous we get rid of it, if it is credible we have those county attorneys forward it onto the county attorney whose jurisdiction they have and then there is accountability because in the past what we have is some county attorneys who have refused to prosecute and so when that happens we lose the ability…we lose the ability to actually get any traction on that particular complaint.”
(The Daily Agenda Podcast – Severson interview with Blois Olson, September 24, 2014)
by Ken Martin, Chairman, Minnesota DFL
Rebecca Otto, the DFL-endorsed two-term incumbent, is perhaps the most nationally recognized State Auditor in Minnesota history. She is the only Minnesota State Auditor to win the National Excellence in Accountability Award, and the only one ever to serve as President of the National State Auditors Association.
Otto’s peers – people who do the work of auditing, which is essentially verifying the truth of something – named her one of the 15 most influential government auditors in America by their worldwide, private-sector association, which cited her “courage, integrity and leadership.”
This is why Matt Entenza, her challenger in the Aug. 12 primary, is talking about things that have nothing to do with the State Auditor’s Office.
Entenza’s latest tactic is to carpet bomb the state with negative literature claiming Rebecca Otto voted for Voter ID. Just one problem. Rebecca Otto has never voted for Voter ID; she campaigned against it. I know. I was with her when she worked against the Voter ID amendment.
On July 24, a three-judge panel unanimously rejected Entenza’s claims about Rebecca Otto and Voter ID, as reported by the Star Tribune.
Despite the ruling, an Entenza mailer began arriving in homes the very next day repeating the claims. Minnesotans like to give people the benefit of the doubt, and to some, this could be dismissed as a simple case of bad taste and worse timing.
However, even after the three-judge panel ruled against Entenza he sent a second mailer also claiming that Rebecca Otto had voted for Voter ID and “denied access” to voters. This is simply not true.
Entenza should know better, he is running for the top elected financial office in Minnesota. If he is willing to mislead voters even after a three-judge panel ruled against him, how can he be trusted to provide those same voters with honest transparency and accountability over government finances?
Integrity and honesty matter in government. Unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident. Readers may remember how Entenza was forced to drop out of the Minnesota Attorney General’s race after it was revealed he had hired an investigator to dig up dirt on incumbent Attorney General Mike Hatch, who was by then the DFL-endorsed candidate for Governor. Then there is the pattern of Entenza campaign finance violations, going back more than a decade.
These things should give voters pause when considering Entenza as a possible State Auditor – the person charged with overseeing more than $20 billion of their hard-earned taxpayer dollars.
The State Auditor needs to be someone that the citizens of Minnesota can trust will be honest, fair and filled with integrity. Those of us who have followed Entenza’s career have deep reservations about his ability to bring those things to this important office.
Posted by SD48 DFL Communications Team in News
A three-judge panel of the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings today unanimously rejected Matt Entenza’s claim that State Auditor Rebecca Otto spoke falsely when she said she has not voted for Voter ID.
The panel concluded that even when viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to Entenza, the complaint against Otto fails as a matter of law and therefore it dismissed the complaint on the merits.
“This is a complete victory for Rebecca Otto over Matt Entenza’s misleading claims and distortion of the facts,” said Charlie Nauen, Otto’s attorney in the matter.
“Rebecca Otto had it right,” said DFL Party Chair Ken Martin. “Matt Entenza will say anything to get himself elected.”
“I have never voted for Voter ID,” said Otto. “In fact, I campaigned against it. So I am pleased that the panel of judges agreed so resoundingly that they rejected all of Mr. Entenza’s claims. I will continue to focus on my job of watching out for the best interest of the taxpayers of Minnesota.”