In the final hours of Election Day, a lawyer for GOP Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle filed a complaint with the Justice Department alleging voter intimidation took place on behalf of the campaign of her opponent Sen. Harry Reid (D), Politico reports.
The complaint relates to an e-mail exchange between an unnamed Reid campaign staffer and the casino chain Harrah’s, which was reported in a story published by the National Review. The National Review reported that the e-mails showed that “Executives at the casino giant Harrah’s pushed company employees to vote early in an all-out effort to help the Harry Reid campaign.”
Angle lawyer Cleta Mitchell — co-chair of the Republican National Lawyers Association —said the e-mails showed “union intimidation tactics.” Reid’s campaign countered that the e-mails don’t show anything against the law and mentioned that the conservative blogger who wrote the story told Fox News that she didn’t think “anything either illegal or unethical was done here.”
“This ‘report’ by a right-wing blogger who’s literally been embedded within the Angle campaign has no credibility on its face,” Reid campaign spokesman Kelly Steele told Politico. “That being said, given Sen. Reid’s work to strengthen the state’s top industry, it should come as no surprise that casino employees support his reelection.”
The chain of e-mails, which can be read here, show that company vice president of public policy and communications Marybel Batjer wrote that another official received a message from the Reid campaign.
“She asked me to reach out to you to PLEASE do whatever we need to do to get the supervisors to know that there is NOTHING more important then (sic) to get employees out to vote,” Batjer wrote to a number of Harrah’s employees. “Waking up to a defeat of Harry Reid Nov 3rd will be devastating for our industry’s future. I know everyone is working hard, but somehow the effort is not getting through the ranks.”
A Justice Department spokeswoman told TPMMuckraker that DOJ was reviewing the letter but declined further comment.
This isn’t the first time that Angle has accused Reid of tinkering with the election, but the Nevada Secretary of State said one of her previous charges had no merit. Angle’s former PAC actually funded a group that later charged that Reid was benefiting from voter fraud.