Democratic Campaign Strategist Arrested, Facing Prison Time

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Attorney General Matthew Platkin of New Jersey has charged Democratic campaign consultant James Devine with election fraud on the grounds that Devine sent over 1,900 phony votes to help Lisa McCormick win a position in the 2021 gubernatorial primary.

According to sources, Devine, who managed McCormick’s campaign in 2021, allegedly emailed phony voter certifications to the Division of Elections of the New Jersey Secretary of State in April of that year.

The New Jersey State Committee, according to Platkin, objected to Devine’s submission of the fictitious votes, noting that the signatures he submitted showed a consistent calligraphy style and that one of the voters was deceased.

After reviewing the evidence, a court struck McCormick’s name from the primary ballot. According to the Daily Caller, Devine has been charged with third-degree charges for interfering with public documents and nomination certificates as well as fourth-degree offenses for falsifying or tampering with records.

According to Thomas Eicher, executive director of the New Jersey Office of Public Integrity and Accountability, “Fraudulent acts like this erode faith in our government and the rule of law, and there must be consequences.”

Devine may spend more than five years in prison if found guilty.

“My political adversaries pounced on a mistake because they want to intimidate anyone with the temerity to challenge this incredibly corrupt system & I have been a pain in the ass to powerful people. I hope this does not stop people from participating in American democracy,” Devine stated in a post on Twitter.

From 1992 to 1993, Devine served as the New Jersey Democratic State Committee’s political director. He referred to himself as a “masterful Democratic Party campaign strategist.”

According to a local newspaper, a California Democratic city council member was detained and accused of participating in election fraud in February.

According to CBS Sacramento, Shakir Khan, a councilman for the city of Lodi, was detained after being charged with further crimes. The publication reported that Khan left his position a few days before being arrested and then claimed that his departure was forced. According to reports, the fresh allegations of vote fraud are connected to the 2020 election.

“We became aware of Shakir Khan’s arrest this morning and I had the opportunity to speak with him here at the county jail and asked for his resignation, effective immediately. According to the source, Lodi Mayor Mikey Hothi highlighted in a statement at the time that he had consented to leave. “The city is fully cooperating with the investigation. I want to thank the sheriff’s office and everybody involved, ensuring a fair and thorough process.”

Khan’s lawyer, who talked to CBS13, claimed that his client was forced to quit his job without legal counsel because he felt under duress at the time. Khan’s attorney also stated that he had not yet formally resigned from his position on the municipal council. However, according to the sheriff’s office, there is strong evidence that Khan betrayed the confidence of the public.

Khan was accused of several crimes involving voter fraud. Charges included causing, procuring, or permitting a forged voter registration of himself or another individual, sending in a bogus candidacy petition, helping to commit election fraud, adding fictitious names to candidature petitions, making a false nomination or statement of candidacy, casting votes illegally, and obtaining, assisting, counseling, or advising a third party who is not an eligible voter.

The local publication also added:

Back in 2021, Khan was arraigned on charges relating to illegal gambling, money laundering, tax evasion, and unemployment claim fraud.

The San Joaquin County Registrar’s Office said they are fully cooperating with the sheriff’s office with its investigation. They also say they are re-evaluating their systems in an effort to prevent voter fraud in the future.

The accusations against Khan are the outcome of an investigation that started in 2019 in response to earlier complaints against him, according to San Joaquin County Sheriff Patrick Withrow.

Withrow went on to say that the public’s stated concerns about the election’s integrity led law enforcement to look into the situation.

Last month, Andrew Gillum, former mayor of Tallahassee, and 2018 Democratic candidate for governor of Florida, was on trial for corruption.

As part of an investigation conducted by a federal grand jury, Gillum was indicted last year on charges of lying to federal agents and defrauding organizations and mega-donors who believed they were contributing to a legitimate political cause.

Gillum, 43, and his political consultant Sharon Janet Lettman-Hicks, 54, were on trial in federal court in Tallahassee.

Today, according to Yahoo News, “A federal jury on Thursday found former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum not guilty of lying to FBI agents and failed to convict him of 18 other fraud counts.”

Jurors couldn’t agree on allegations by federal prosecutors that Gillum and his “political godmother” Sharon Lettman-Hicks illegally steered political contributions to their personal accounts during his 2018 run for governor. Gillum came within 32,000 votes of defeating then-U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis.

As the court clerk read off the verdicts, Gillum wiped tears from his eyes and his lawyer turned around and pumped his fist to Gillum’s family in the gallery.

The jury also deadlocked on all charges against Hicks, 54.


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