GOP primaries

Iowa secretary of State scolds Cruz over controversial mailers

The Iowa secretary of State on Saturday rebuked Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz’s controversial use of a mailer to encourage turnout at the Feb. 1 caucuses.
“Today I was shown a piece of literature from the Cruz for President campaign that misrepresents the role of my office, and worse, misrepresents Iowa election law,” Paul Pate said in a statement released by his office.
{mosads}The Cruz campaign sent out “report cards” in Iowa purporting to grade residents and their neighbors on their voter participation in past caucuses.
Formatted to look like an official document, the mailer is marked with the words “voting violation” at the top of the page in a large red box.
“Accusing citizens of Iowa of a ‘voting violation’ based on Iowa Caucus participation, or lack thereof, is false representation of an official act,” Pate continued in the statement. “There is no such thing as an election violation related to frequency of voting.
“Any institution or statement to the contrary is wrong and I believe is not in keeping in the spirit of the Iowa Caucuses,” he added.
The mailer also includes an important notice at the bottom of the page: “Voting registration and voter history records are public records distributed by the Iowa Secretary of State and/or county election clerks. This data is not available for use for commercial purposes — use is limited by law. Scores reflect participation in recent elections.”
Pate, a Republican, said the secretary of state does not engage in any vote grading.
“Additionally, the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office never ‘grades’ voters,” he said. “Nor does the Secretary of State maintain records related to Iowa Caucus participation. Caucuses are organized and directed by the state political parties, not the Secretary of State, nor local elections officials.
“Also, the Iowa Secretary of State does not ‘distribute’ voter records. They are available for purchase for political purposes only, under Iowa Code.”
GOP presidential rival Rand Paul used the news to slam Cruz:
Tags Iowa Ted Cruz

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