By Stephen Clark, FoxNews
The Justice Department is sending a small pack of election observers to Arizona as Hispanic groups sound the alarm over an anti-illegal immigration group’s mass e-mail seeking to recruit Election Day volunteers to help block illegal immigrants from voting.
Hispanic voting rights groups say the e-mail is just an attempt to intimidate minority voters. But election fraud monitors say that there are hundreds of examples of duplicate registrations, wrong information and past unregistered voters getting ballots.
Voter fraud allegations have emerged just days before the midterm in many crucial battleground states across the country, including Nevada, Pennsylvania and Florida.
The Justice Department announced Friday it would deploy more than 400 federal observers to 30 jurisdictions in 18 states ahead of Tuesday’s election. But Arizona officials say the department had already committed to sending observers to their state.
Justice Department officials had notified Maricopa County that they would send a “handful” of election observers, even before the e-mail was sent, Matthew Benson, a spokesman for Arizona’s secretary of state, told FoxNews.com.
“We don’t know why (the observers are) coming,” he said. “But we do not believe it’s in response to the e-mails making the rounds.”
But William Gheen, executive director of Americans for Legal Immigration, said he knows why they’re coming.
“They’re sending them out because the Obama administration is doing everything it can to make sure as many illegal aliens vote in 2010 although that is a violation of federal law,” he told FoxNews.com.
Benson noted that the Justice Department sends election observers to at least one Arizona county every election. In 2006, the department sent around 30 election observers to Maricopa County, he said.
Benson said the plan had nothing to do with the firestorm elicited by Ban Amnesty Now, or B.A.N., the group that sent an e-mail entitled “6 Days to STOP Illegals from Stealing the Election!”
The e-mail said “open-border criminals” in the unions, the White House and Hispanic groups are “determined to undermine” the election.
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