There are dueling allegations of voter fraud in Virginia this week. Three Democratic lawmakers requested an investigation into companies hired by Republicans to conduct voter registration drives. Meanwhile, Democratic Rep. Jim Moran's son, Patrick, resigned from his father's campaign after a conservative group released an undercover video of him. He's seen discussing a plan to cast fraudulent ballots. David Hawkings, editor of the CQ Roll Call Daily Briefing, talks about the latest details.
On Patrick Moran's resignation and how much damage the video has caused Rep. Jim Moran's campaign and reputation: "Probably not much, to be candid. Rep. Moran is looking for his 12th term against the same person he defeated last time with 61 percent of the vote... Patrick Murray is the Republican nominee. Murray got 37 percent last time; that wasn't a presidential year. This is going to be a big turnout for Democrats, we think. In the suburbs that Moran represents, so really we don't think it's going to hurt his reputation with his constituents, nor on the Hill, where his reputation is complicated."
On the video that Patrick Moran resigned over: "Well we know this video was made by a gonzo conservative video maker. He's a gotcha journalist. Video seems true. No one is disputing what's on the video is what actually transpired. To my ears, it sounds a little ambivalent what Patrick Moran said... so this story will linger for a while.
On Moran's investigation into a group hired by Republicans to conduct registration drives: "Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says he's looking into it. Both stories go into what each party says about the other. The Democrats said that Republicans tried to destroy ballots and registration forms in Rockingham County, Va. The allegations against Moran is that he tried to get people who weren't registered to vote to cast votes anyway. Democrats generally think that Republicans are out to suppress the vote. Republicans think that Democrats are out to falsely inflate the vote."
On what kind of presence we're seeing from the presidential candidates in the swing state of Virginia: "These stories are not so much about the Congressional races or the local races... this is about the national race. As anyone who's been paying attention in our area knows, Virginia is one of the crucial swing states for both sides."
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