Voter registration drive violates law

voter registrationVoter registration drive may get ACORN successor in hot water with Feds.

Earlier this year, Maryland removed the restriction on felons voting.  This happened when the legislature voted to override Gov. Hogan’s veto of the legislation.

As the State Board of Elections website summarizes: “Effective March 10, 2016, if you have been convicted of a felony, you are eligible to register to vote once you have completed the court-ordered sentence of imprisonment. For the purposes of eligibility to register to vote, convictions include federal, state and out-of-state convictions.”

A Friday (4/1/16) story by Erin Cox in The Baltimore Sun discusses a voter registration drive targeting these newly eligible “ex-felons.”

voter registration

The voter registration drive was organized by Maryland Communities United. A 2014 story by Matthew Vadum in Daily Caller reported that as a successor organization to ACORN. ACORN was disbanded following a scandal in 2009 that centered on Baltimore. Note their logo (above) has the socialist fist in it.

Here’s one interesting detail from the Sun story Friday (emphasis added):

Over the course of the next 90 minutes, Communities United volunteers persuaded more than a dozen passersby to register, doling out packages of Skittles or a single Newport cigarette to each new voter.

Violations of Federal Law for Voter Registration

Looking at the applicable sections of federal law, 52 U.S.C. § 10307(c) anyone who:

pays or offers to pay or accepts payment either for registration to vote or for voting shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than five years, or both: Provided, however, That this provision shall be applicable only to general, special, or primary elections held solely or in part for the purpose of selecting or electing any candidate for the office of President, Vice President, presidential elector, Member of the United States Senate, Member of the United States House of Representatives, Delegate from the District of Columbia, Guam, or the Virgin Islands, or Resident Commissioner of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.”

Here’s what the California Secretary of State’s office says about the federal law (emphasis added):

Federal law makes it unlawful in an election in which there is a federal contest on the ballot (e.g., President, U.S. Senate, U.S. Representative) to knowingly and willfully pay, offer to pay, or accept payment for registering to vote or for voting. (52 U.S.C. § 10307(c).) Violations are punishable by a fine up to $10,000 or imprisonment for up to five years, or both. Any type of incentive is considered “payment,” even things as seemingly innocent as cookies or admission to an entertainment event.

Based on the report of Communities United giving out cigarettes and Skittles to people in exchange for voting – it appears to be an obvious violation of federal law.

First, I would hope Communities United would cease and desist these actions. Second, I would hope that the appropriate authorities look into the matter and take any action deemed necessary.

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton is an award-winning blogger who has been aggregating and blogging since 1998. He has worked as a reporter, in government, and as a communications professional in Columbia, SC and Washington, DC.

Quinton is a native South Carolinian who has lived in Baltimore since 2006. He is a recent convert to the Catholic Church and is active in the Knights of Columbus. He has been involved in the pro-life movement nationally and locally since 2010.

Quinton is a veteran who served as an intelligence analyst in the Army National Guard. He is also an Eagle Scout.
Jeff Quinton


  1. They are not being paid to vote u fat idiot, they are regestering to vote. Its ok for Goldman sachs to give hillary clinton 675 thousand dollars but.apparently u cant give someone a newport

    • Actually, Jay – that is the case. I’m no fan of Hillary but if you actually read what I wrote and the links instead of name-calling and ad hominem, you’d see that it’s illegal to give someone anything to register to vote.