By Samuel Mattison
Alabama Political Reporter
The Secretary of State’s Office is reviewing the information for the 674 voters that allegedly violated Alabama’s new law banning crossover voting.
Monday was the deadline for counties to turn in information related to alleged voter fraud conducted during the Special Senate Republican Runoff in September. According to the filings from the Office, over 300 cases of the fraud happened in Jefferson County.
The investigation centers around crossover voting, which was outlawed in the state during the Spring’s Legislative Session. This means if you vote in the Democratic Primary you are not eligible to vote in the Republican Runoff.
Merrill launched an investigation on election day after he said he received complaints that poll workers were allowing/assisting Democratic voters voting in the Republican Runoff. He said he would prosecute them to “the fullest extent of the law.”
“The integrity of the elections process is at stake today and we will not allow nor will we tolerate efforts to assist people who behave with such reckless disregard for the process and are willing to lie their way to a felony conviction,” Merrill said on election day.
If proven guilty, the convicted would face up to ten years in prison and fines up to $15,000. Crossover voting is considered a class C felony.
The September runoff saw former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore best U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., in all but four counties. Jefferson, Strange’s home county, was one where Moore lost.
Moore will go to the general election in December to face Democrat Doug Jones. Current polling puts Moore winning a decisive victory against Jones.
U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, Alabama’s only Democratic House member, got into a spat with state Secretary of State John Merrill on Twitter last week about the law.
Sewell originally took to Twitter to call Merrill on what she called “voter intimidation.” Merrill, since he was informed about the alleged incidents, has said that he will pursue these perpetrators with jail time and fines.
Sewell then invoked her home town of Selma, Alabama, saying it was “where our families fought, bled, and died for their right to vote.”
Merrill defended his actions by writing to Sewell that the state of Alabama would “never stand for voter oppression.”
The Secretary of State’s Office will release more information about the investigation later this week after the information is delivered.