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Election-Tampering Pure And Simple

based on a report by Joshua Micah Marshall. August 11, 2005

Big news regarding the Republican election-tampering scam in New Hampshire on election day 2002. This was the case in which the state Republican party hired a company to jam the phones of Democratic and union phone banks doing get-out-the-vote work on election day in what was expected to be a tight race between now-Sen. John Sununu and then-Gov. Jeanne Shaheen.

Election-tampering pure and simple.

The then-executive director of the New Hampshire Republican party and a consultant involved in the scheme are now doing time for their role in the caper. And though the DOJ has done about everything it can to drag its feet on the case, as we first reported last year, the kingpin in the case, James Tobin himself, was finally indicted.

In 2002, Tobin was the Northeast Regional Director for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, working under then-Chairman Bill Frist. (Later he became the regional chairman of Bush-Cheney 2004; he stepped down when he was indicted.)

Frist has refused ever to answer questions about what he knew about the scam. Various RNC officials going back almost three years now have disavowed any knowledge of the case at all. And now, finally, we have proof that all along the RNC has continued to pay Tobin's legal bills -- already totalling more than $700,000 before the man has even gone to trial.

The fact that the RNC is paying Tobin's legal bills means either that he was acting under authorization or, frankly, that they're trying to keep him quiet. There's really no other reasonable explanation of this.

Reporters from the big news outlets have never taken this story very seriously. Now's the time.

You have been reading excerpts from "Big News ... did I say Big News?" by Joshua Micah Marshall. You can read the entire piece here: tinyurl.com/782x8. Thanks to Josh Marshall at talkingpointsmemo.com. We visit often and we hope you will too.

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