When it comes to filing fraudulent nominating petitions, Lisa McCormick might be a serial offender.
Petitions McCormick filed last year as a candidate of the U.S. House of Representatives in New Jersey’s 12th district appear to use the same mail merge system as the ones she used earlier this month as a candidate for governor.
Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Rabin ruled last week that none of the electronic signatures on McCormick’s petitions to challenge Gov. Phil Murphy were authentic, causing Secretary of State Tahesha Way to toss her from the ballot.
The 2020 petitions were also filed electronically and utilizes common formats – identical spacing and fonts, and in 376 of 399 signatures, an apostrophe appears in front of the zip code. Just 3 of the 399 signatures include a middle initial.
McCormick won just 10.8% of the vote in that primary and her petitions were not challenged by the incumbent, Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-Ewing).
Executive orders issued by Murphy for the last two years allowed candidates to file signatures electronically. Unless they are contested, there is no mechanism to review petitions.
Way has referred McCormick’s 2021 petitions to law enforcement to determine if the candidate or her controversial life partner/campaign manager, James Devine, broke any laws in filing fake petitions.
Murphy had no comment on McCormick’s petitions.
“I’ll leave that process to its own resolution, but I would say this: our voting laws are exactly what they are. They’re laws. They have to be respected, including by us and anyone else who runs. They have to be taken seriously. They have to be adhered to. You can’t get too close to any lines,” Murphy said. “We have to take this stuff seriously, and I’m glad we are.”McCormick Petition for House of Representatives District 12 (3)