A former judge of elections has admitted to accepting thousands of dollars in bribes to cast fraudulent ballots and certifying false voting results in primary elections in Philadelphia.
Domenick J. DeMuro, 73, pleaded guilty to conspiring to deprive persons of civil rights, and using interstate facilities in aid of bribery. His sentencing is scheduled for June 30, 2020.
"In May 2014, DeMuro inflated vote totals by adding 27 fraudulent ballots in the primary election, 40 votes in May 2015, and 46 in 2016, according to court documents outlining the scheme and the charges against him.
While those numbers may seem small, prosecutors said, they made up a significant percentage of the total votes cast at the polling place. In 2014, 118 total ballots were reported there, which means that DeMuro’s fraudulent votes accounted for over 22% of the total voting in that division in 2014. In 2015, his fraud accounted for over 15% of the votes in the division; in 2016, his fraud accounted for over 17% of the votes.
Al Schmidt, vice chairman of the Office of Philadelphia City Commissioners, which runs elections, said his office found that DeMuro’s 36th Division had a history of more votes being cast on machines than the number of voters who signed poll books. His said his office referred the division’s troubling vote numbers from 2014 and 2015 to the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.
“It was pretty flagrant, and it was repeated again and again. It was a source of frustration for me because it kept occurring again and again,” he said of DeMuro’s division."
As Sen. Ted Cruz tweeted in response to news of DeMuro’s guilty plea, “Can’t be. Dems have told us there’s no such thing as voter fraud.”
The video below is US Attorney William Swain discussing the case. He said:
“Demuro fraudulently stuffed the ballot box by literally standing in a voting booth and voting over and over, as fast as he could, while he thought the coast was clear. This is utterly reprehensible conduct. The charges announced today do not erase what he did, but they do ensure that he is held to account for those actions.Voting is the cornerstone of our democracy. If even one vote is fraudulently rung up, the integrity of that election is compromised. I want the public to know that this investigation is active and ongoing, and my Office is taking every possible step that we can to ensure the integrity of the upcoming primary and general elections in the nine counties of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.”