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Maricopa County In Arizona Gives Wrong Election Date To Spanish Voters

Danielle Tarasiuk |
October 18, 2012 | 12:15 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Rob Boudon/ Creative Commons
Rob Boudon/ Creative Commons
Accusations of racial discrimination hit Maricopa county in Arizona, the notorious Sherriff Arpaio’s district, once again, when Latino voters received the wrong date in the Spanish language version of the election ballot. 

The county sent out about 2 million new election voter registration cards, but only about 50 of the cards that were handed out at the elections office had the mistake. 

The incorrect Spanish language version of the voter registration cards said that the election would take place on November 8th  instead of November 6th. 

According to a statement by the county, the registration cards have been fixed to reflect the correct dates, but Petra Falcon, the executive director of Promise Arizona in Action, a nonprofit dedicated to civic participation in Arizona among Latinos and youth, says the damage has already been done. 

"To know that there's information out there that's wrong,” said Falcon, “it's going to take a lot of work to make sure that people know the correct date."

It is unconstitutional to distribute false information about elections. The Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Prevention Act states that it is illegal to enact tactics that either intimidate or prevent voters from exercising their constitutional right on election day. 

Maricopa county has a long history of bitter entanglements with their Latino community over immigration laws.  

Arpaio, who has named himself “America’s toughest” sheriff has been the target of many civil lawsuits alleging racial profiling and discrimination, but Arpaio maintains his innocence. 

Arpaio was also the subject of a lawsuit by the U.S. Justice Department, which claimed that his sheriff’s department violated Latino civil rights. 

In response to the lawsuit Arpaio said in May, "They're using me for the Latino vote, showing that they're doing something, taking on the sheriff over an alleged racial profiling.”

Arpaio continues to deny any discrimination charges.  


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