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Tennant Calls Conservative Group's Voter Registration Mailing "Misleading"

Reported: Apr. 22, 2014 7:45 PM EDT
Updated: Apr. 22, 2014 11:07 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP, Heath Harrison) -- The West Virginia secretary of state is calling an Americans for Prosperity mailing about voter registration "misleading" and "confusing."

The mailer says the recipient only has a few days to register to vote at his or her current address. It includes a voter registration card and prepaid envelope.

Democratic Secretary of State Natalie Tennant said people have to update their registration only if they move, change their name, or want to switch political parties. Tennant said legitimate contact will only come from county election clerks, not third-party groups.

“If you have not moved, changed your name, or switched political parties, then you should throw this mailer into the trash because your voter registration is still valid,” Tennant said in a news release. “We were made aware of this situation because there was a large number of confused citizens calling our office and the offices of county clerks asking questions about why they had to update their voter registration information. The secretary of state’s office did not send this mailer, and it did not come from county clerks. We don’t know what the purpose of the mailer is but we do know that it is confusing citizens.”

Americans for Prosperity state director Wendy McCuskey said the mailer was sent to people who aren't registered, based on public record. She said it was legal and nonpartisan.

The small-government Americans for Prosperity opened a West Virginia chapter in January. The national organization was founded by billionaire conservative activists Charles and David Koch, who are well-known for the political spending and campaign contributions for conservative and Republican causes.

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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