Donald Trump blasts Virginia GOP over voter ‘statement of affiliation’
GOP front-runner Donald Trump took to Twitter earlier this afternoon to blast the Republican Party of Virginia over a new requirement that says voters in theMarch 1 primary must sign a “statement of affiliation” that affirms they are members of the Republican party prior to voting.
Trump writes that this move will “disallow independent, unaffiliated and new voters” and is a “suicidal mistake” by the state party:
Voters in Virginia do not register by party for the primaries and can ask for either a Democrat or Republican ballot on the date of the election.Voters requesting a Democrat ballot will not have to sign an oath, however.
John Findlay, executive director of Republican Party of Virginia, defended the “statement of affiliation,” claiming it’s not targeted at any one candidate:
The Republican Party of Virginias State Central Committee (SCC) has set a reasonable threshold to participate in the 2016 Republican Presidential Primary, signing your name to a very simple nine word statement that reads: My signature below indicates that I am a Republican.
The statement was primarily passed by the SCC with a simple goal: to ensure Republican voters select our Republican nominee in 2016. As this Statement of Affiliation gets discussed, many in the media are misconstruing its intent and terminology. It is not an oath or pledge in any way. It is not targeting any candidate, group of voters or an unreasonable barrier to voting. These nine words were used specifically to avoid any confusion or reference to past attempts.
The state Board of Elections conducted a random draw to determine the order of the candidates on the March 1 ballot with Rubio in the top slot. Trump is at No. 7: