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Massachusetts Republicans Cry Foul Over Voter Registration Mailings

Massachusetts Republican Party

The Massachusetts Republican Party has filed a series of public information requests to investigate the state’s mailings of voter registration forms to welfare recipients – a move the GOP claims is politically motivated. WAMC’s Lucas Willard has more…

The Massachusetts Republican Party says that when the state settled in a lawsuit, brought on by a political advocacy group, it was part of an insider move to strengthen support for Democratic Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren. Tim Buckley of the Mass GOP…

The controversy began when group Demos sued the Commonwealth, saying that it had been in violation of federal election laws which says that states must take steps to ensure welfare recipients’ opportunity to register to vote. A preliminary injunction hearing was scheduled in Federal Court, but Massachusetts settled out of court quickly and used $276,000 in public funds to mail voter registration forms welfare recipients across the state.

Massachusetts Republicans, including incumbent Senator Scott Brown, are crying foul, saying that the plan was made to benefit Elizabeth Warren. They are quick to highlight that Warren’s daughter,  Amelia Warren Tyagi, serves as chairwoman of Demos’ board of trustees.

Demos has dismissed the accusations. Vice President for Legal Strategies of Demos Brenda Wright.

Since 2006, Demos says that they have brought similar lawsuits forward in Ohio, Missouri, New Mexico, Indiana, and Georgia.

But Massachusetts Republicans say it’s all politics.

Demos says that the real issue is the lack of voter registration in states across the country.

On his website, Senator Scott Brown said he is now asking Elizabeth Warren that she pay for the mailings herself, reimbursing the Commonwealth. Brown says, “Warren has more than $13 million dollars in her campaign account, and if she wants to mail every welfare recipient a voter registration form, she should do so at her own expense, not taxpayers’.”

Officials from Warren’s campaign continue to dismiss the accusations.

Lucas Willard is a reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011.