West Haven Registrar’s Actions Under Scrutiny

New Haven Register: State probing actions of W. Haven registrar <read>

WEST HAVEN — The state is investigating two election-violation complaints stemming from the March 2 Democratic Town Committee primary and subsequent recounts.

Nancy Nicolescu, spokeswoman for the state Election Enforcement Commission, confirmed the commission is reviewing two complaints against Democratic Registrar of Voters Michelle Hufcut. At a March 24 meeting, the commission approved investigatory subpoenas in the case, which authorized the state to seize materials related to the election in question.

The complaints were filed by Charles Marino, former Democratic registrar of voters, and Deborah Evangelista, who worked 16 years as administrative assistant in the registrar’s office before Hufcut took office.

Hufcut Tuesday confirmed the state came in this month and seized ballots and other election materials as part of the investigation. Regarding the complaints, Hufcut dismissed them as politically motivated.

“I don’t think there is any validity. I think it is their attempt to try to discredit me. I think once the state is finished with their investigation, I’ll be vindicated,” Hufcut said.

Evangelista said she and Marino filed the complaints because they were appalled by Hufcut’s handling of the election and recounts.

“It was a fiasco,” Evangelista said…

Animosity between Hufcut and Marino goes back to 2008, when Hufcut unseated Marino as Democratic registrar in a heated primary election. Hufcut at the time decided to challenge Marino after she read a University of Connecticut report that uncovered dead people on statewide voter registration lists, including West Haven.

We tend to go along with that last statement.  We recall the controversy involving the two Registrars and the newly elected Hufcut at the November 2008 election, which also involved the Secretary of the State and her advice to Hufcut.


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