(WASHINGTON) — Republicans have fired the firm they had employed to register voters in battleground states.
After Florida election officials said they received faulty voter-registration forms, the Republican National Committee said it had severed ties with Strategic Allied Consulting, a voter-registration firm that was handling GOP registration efforts in Colorado, Florida, Nevada, North Carolina and Virginia — all key swing states in the presidential election.
“We have zero tolerance for any threat to the integrity of elections,” said RNC communications director Sean Spicer. “When we were informed of an alleged incident, we immediately cut all ties to the company.”
Voter fraud has long been a charge conservatives have lodged against Democrats. During the 2008 election cycle, Republicans accused the since-disbanded group ACORN of falsifying forms.
An RNC official downplayed the notion that parting ways with Strategic Allied Consulting will damage the RNC’s registration push, saying the Republican registration effort “was wrapping up anyway” by the time faulty registrations were discovered.
The five states where the dismissed firm was working were the only ones in which the RNC had organized voter-registration efforts, the official said. He described Republicans’ registration push as far more limited than Democrats’.
The firm, recommended by the RNC to state parties, was contracted both by the RNC and by the five state parties, which also have severed ties, according to the RNC. The RNC had been funding the registration efforts.
Competitive Senate races are unfolding in two of the states: ABC News rates Senate contests in Nevada and Virginia as toss-ups. ABC News rates Florida’s Senate race as “leans Democrat,” with Sen. Bill Nelson expected to win re-election.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Dylan Byers, CNN
Azadeh Ansari and Angela Dewan, CNN
Z. Byron Wolf, CNN