Maine GOP Chair Suspicious of 'Dozens of Black Voters'

'Nobody in town knows anyone who's black,' Charlie Webster protests

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 15, 2012 1:40 PM CST

(Newser) – Maine GOP chair Charlie Webster thinks his state is rife with voter fraud—and he has evidence. "In some parts of rural Maine, there were dozens, dozens of black people who came in and voted on Election Day," Webster told WCSH 6. "Everybody has the right to vote, but nobody in town knows anyone who's black. How did that happen? I don't know. We're going to find out. I think it's a problem." Pressed as to where this was occurring, Webster would only say, "several rural Maine towns."

The comment has raised an uproar, with one GOP strategist saying it "should be cause for immediate resignation," the Portland Press Herald reports. (Webster's term expires at month's end.) But Webster stands by his statement: "I'm not talking about 15 or 20. I'm talking about hundreds," he told the paper. "Maybe I shouldn't have said these voters were black, but anyone who suggests I have a bias toward any race or group, frankly, that's sleazy." State authorities say they haven't gotten any complaints backing up Webster's claims. Only 1.2% of Maine's population is black, but that still amounts to 15,707 people, which is, mathematically speaking, several dozen.

Charlie Webster is seen in this screenshot from the local TV interview in which he questioned black voters in several rural Maine towns.
Charlie Webster is seen in this screenshot from the local TV interview in which he questioned black voters in several rural Maine towns.   (WCSH 6)
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