- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Texas Secretary of State Rolando Pablos confirmed this week that he has asked state Attorney General Ken Paxton to open an investigation into the Democratic Party’s attempts to ask non-citizens to sign up to vote.

“The numerous calls and complaints we have received regarding pre-filled voter registration applications sent to ineligible voters are highly disturbing,” Mr. Pablos said in a statement Monday.

He was referring to mail the state Democratic Party sent out urging people to sign up to vote, and warning of deadlines if they didn’t act quickly. The mailing included a voter application that already had the boxes for age and citizenship status pre-checked.

Some of the mail went to non-citizens, who are actually ineligible.

The mailings, while sent from the state party, had pre-addressed return envelopes addressed to elections officials, leaving some residents with the impression they were official communications from the state.

Encouraging someone to submit a fraudulent registration form is a crime — though officials said it would take an investigation to know whether the party’s mailings cross that line.

The Washington Times reported on the mailings last week after the Public Interest Legal Foundation filed complaints with prosecutors in two Texas counties.

The PILF praised the secretary of state’s move to ask for an investigation.

“The Texas Democratic Party had no business altering voter registration forms,” said Logan Churchwell, a PILF spokesman. “The party apparently does not grasp the lifelong consequences their actions can carry against affected immigrants — yet it was willing to risk them to squeeze votes for an overhyped Senate race.”

The state Democratic Party last week declined to put The Washington Times in touch with anyone who could answer questions. Instead the party insisted questions be emailed — and those emails went unanswered.

The party also didn’t immediately respond Tuesday to a request for comment on the new investigation.

• Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

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