Watchdog Group Claims Absentee Ballot Fraud, Opponents Counter Special Interests At Play

Tom Swan, executive director of the Connecticut Citizen Action Group, on Tuesday announced a complaint alleging violations of absentee ballot fraud involving the slate of endorsed candidates in the September 10 Democratic school board primary was filed with the Connecticut Elections Enforcement Commission. In response Emily Basham, the campaign manager for the endorsed Democrats, issued this statement:

“These vague allegations are completely baseless and meant to be a distraction from the fact that the ROW B candidates have no meaningful solutions to improve the quality of our children’s education. The allegations come from a highly partisan Hartford-based group led by Chris Donovan’s former campaign manager (a campaign that had two federal indictments) and funded in large part by the Teacher’s Union. They were filed by the wife of the Vice-President of the Teacher’s Union; and two Working Families party operatives. Bridgeport voters need to ask why is the teacher’s union and the outside organizations that it funds spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to influence the outcome of Bridgeport elections?”

Swan issued this statement Tuesday morning:

“We have looked at the evidence and it is overwhelming” said Tom Swan. “We are calling for an immediate investigation of suspected voter fraud. Our organization believes that perpetrators of anti-democratic activity must be brought to justice. We must protect our democratic voting rights.”

CCAG will also call for third-party monitoring of polling places and the Registrar of Voters office on Election Day.

Alleged abuses contained in the Affidavits include:

– Improper and illegal handling of absentee ballots by election workers;

– Illegal marking of the ballot by paid campaign workers;

– Threatening elderly voters in order to get their signature on an absentee ballot application;

– Deliberate perpetration of false voting information;

– Unidentified assistance with ballot application completion.

CCAG is a statewide organization committed to the conduct of free and fair elections. The organization has been a leader over the last decade in campaign finance reform.

The endorsed Democrats are Kathryn Bukovsky, Simon Castillo and Brandon Clark. The challenge slate is Andre Baker, Dave Hennessey and Howard Gardner.



  1. This is hardly news. At this point monitors from the DOJ would help. Lydia Martinez is well known for fraudulent election practices. And a lot of addresses on the voter lists are very suspicious to say the least. As someone who was working with WF last fall I was very confident two weeks into the campaign we were going to beat Finch on the Charter revision … which was a surprise to me. These guys are scared and they will try to pull everything they can get away with. My bet is there will be a record number of absentee ballots. My recommendation from afar is to get someone to check the list (public info) and check out the addresses by sight.

  2. If there’s absentee ballot fraud in the BOE election, there’s probably also fraud in the city council election since the names are on the same ballot. I am sick and tired of our seniors being threatened, coerced or bribed with pizza (Mayor Finch!) to vote for the machine candidates. Lydia and her minions should not be allowed in senior centers or any public housing facility. Lydia is co-chair of the City Council Committee that recommends CDBG (HUD) funding. The senior centers and housing complexes receive HUD funding. This is a direct conflict. Incidentally, Milta Feliciano, Lydia’s running mate, runs a City program that receives CDBG funding recommended by Lydia. Martha Santiago runs the East Side Senior Center that receives CDBG funding recommended by Lydia.

    Dig a little deeper, Mr. Swan.

  3. *** Time for the finger-pointing on who’s done what! All you have to do is follow the A/B’s trail, dates and if someone helped in filling them out and where. From there it may take a bit of good old-fashioned legwork and door-knocking to the applicants’ places of residence for a friendly chat with “no” water-boarding allowed please! Document everything in writing with copies and pictures where able for the SEEC who will need a full verbal confession, and also in writing in English, Spanish and Greek. *** GOOD LUCK, AGENTS! ***

  4. Gosh, what a shock. Absentee ballot fraud. Absentee ballot fraud committed by Lydia Martinez. The same Lydia Martinez who is practically, according to Mayor Finch, a lifelong friend. According to Lydia, the mayor just loves her. How nice they found each other. Really quite the couple. Let’s hope the State Election Enforcement Commission actually does something besides fine Lydia again. Let’s hope they make her and the mayor a real couple. The people in Bridgeport who continue to support her so they will have her extraordinary expertise in fleecing seniors out of their voting rights all deserve to be cited and fined. It’s subverting the democratic process and extreme save your own ass at the expense of everyone else–in this case almost 145,000 citizens. You’d think they might be ashamed of themselves. I’m ashamed for them.

  5. Bridgeport is notorious for voter fraud. I’ve seen it in action. I stood in the rain for Chris Caruso about 6 or 7 years ago at one polling place. The geniuses in CT decided to use a new voting machine. Needless to say the machine broke down due to the extreme humidity and manual ballots were used. The result was twofold. The breakdown of voting at that precinct was exactly 82-82 for each candidate. And, more importantly, there were more ballots cast than persons who voted at that location as the electronic ballots weren’t secured and just sat on a chair for three hours during the manual voting that went on. And the candidate, Joe Giaquinto, who ran against Bob Curwen lost by 21 votes. And my sense of the verbal polling I did was a loss for Finch and a loss for Curwen.

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