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Va. state senator calls for investigation of potential widespread voter registration fraud

Democratic State Sen.

Democratic State Sen. Donald McEachin called for the Virginia's Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to conduct an investigation into the destruction of voter registration forms in Rockingham County.

McEachin joined Rev. Al Sharpton on PoliticsNation Friday to discuss the arrest of  Colin Small and the possibility that this was not an isolated incident. The senator stated, "Republicans have been complaining about voter fraud all through the general assembly session, all though this entire year,  now we see that same party hiring people who ultimately put registration forms in the trash on the very day they're supposed to be turned in."

Sen. McEachin's primary concern is whether or not this election fraud reached beyond Rockingham County.

"What we don't know is, is this widespread or is this an isolated incident. If our attorney general feels likes he shouldn't handle it, then hire an independent counsel to do it, but we in Virginia need an investigation. We're less than 18 days away from Election Day. We need to know whether our system is foolproof, that it's working the way it ought to be working, or is there something foul and corrupt going on."

Attorney General Cuccinelli is an especially polarizing figure in Virginia who once questioned the validity of President Obama's birth certificate before eventually backing away from those statements. He recently rejected a request from the Romney campaign to investigate voter registration mailings sent out by the Voter Participation Center.

Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart echoed McEachin and Sharpton's concerns on PoliticsNation as well, "This is not just that it could be serious. It is serious. If it had just been one voter registration card that had been trashed or ripped apart or not submitted in time, that would be a travesty against our system of democracy. People have the right to vote, and if that right is infringed, whoever does it should be punished." He also reiterated the need for an investigation. "You have Republican operatives who are actually doing things that are illegal and against our way of government, and legal authorities have to get involved to find out -- not on a partisan basis but on an American basis -- to ensure that there's integrity in the American system," Capehart said.

Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz is pointing a finger at her Republican counterpart, Reince Preibus, noting that he hired Small's former employer, Strategic Allied Consulting, with full knowledge of the past allegations of voter fraud levied against its owner, Nathan Sproul. Given this history, Sharpton says, "It is not paranoid to think that this could be more widespread and planned."

It is still unclear whether voter registration forms were destroyed outside of Rockingham county and so far Cuccinelli has not responded to calls for an investigation. Both Sharpton and McEachin hope that will happen swiftly. As McEachin says, "We need a transparent investigation so that the public can be reassured that this is an isolated incident or so the public can be alerted that there's something rotten in Richmond."