A Jewish candidate in a Virginia Beach district that could be key for the Democrats regaining the House in November said allegations of signature fraud by her Republican rival get more “troubling by the hour” after a dead man’s name was reportedly found on a ballot petition.
Retired Navy commander Elaine Luria released the statement after a special prosecutor was appointed to investigate if campaign staff for Republican Rep. Scott Taylor forged signatures — including of a man who passed away in April — in an effort to get rival Democrat Shaun Brown on the ballot as an independent to split the vote.
Special prosecutor Donald Caldwell was appointed on Aug. 7 after news broke about the possible forgeries.
One of the names in question was for Stuart Cake, a civil servant with the Navy, who passed away on April 6.
Cake’s signature was reportedly signed on June 9.
Taylor, who was first elected in 2016, had already fired his campaign manger before the scandal.
Brown dropped out of the Democratic primary after being indicted on federal corruption charges that a non-profit she ran falsified records about meals served to low-income children.
The Democrats had already been eyeing the district as a potential pickup and Luria was among a crop of Jewish candidates who outraised their opponents from April through the end of June.
The outcome, though, was still far from certain as the Republicans garnered 9,000 more votes during the June 12 primary and Taylor still leads in overall fundraising.