Earlier this month, Indiana state police executed a search warrant at the office of an organization that set out to register Black voters, citing use of suspicious registration forms as probable cause. But activists are hitting back, saying the sweeping investigation is a prime example of the suppression of Black voters.
The investigation comes at a time when Donald Trump’s camp have increased their accusations of rigged voting and fraud, and many say the investigation in Indiana, supported by the Republican secretary of state Connie Lawson, is political — especially considering the fact that the state’s governor, Mike Pence, is the Republican vice-presidential candidate.
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Lawson’s participation, in particular, has amounted to “the voter suppression equivalent of an Amber alert,” said Craig Varoga, the president of Patriot Majority USA, a liberal nonprofit group that ran the Indiana Voter Registration Project.
Lawson sent a letter to state election officials warning that “nefarious actors are operating” and asking them to inform authorities if they received any voter registration forms from the group.
The Indiana Voter Registration Project had plans to register thousands of Black voters in the state and insists they have done nothing wrong.
But it is unlikely the issue will be resolved before Election Day, with thousands of potential Black votes at stake in selecting a new governor, national senator and President.