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Election officials refute Trump’s mail-in ballot fraud allegations

The top elections official in the Mountain State delivered a rebuttal to President Donald Trump on Wednesday, hours after the president, on national television, alleged widespread, mail-in voter fraud here.

“Mailmen, selling the ballots,” Trump said, during a debate Tuesday night with presidential challenger Joe Biden.

“They are being sold,” he said. “They are being dumped in rivers.”

West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner, though, put a “Return to Sender” stamp on the president’s characterization —  saying the case to which Trump was referring involved a postal worker in Pendleton County who was caught altering the party affiliations on five absentee ballot requests.

The worker, Warner said, tried to change the forms from Democrat to Republican.

Pendleton’s “astute county clerk” caught the tampering, Warner said, and turned the forms over to his office for investigation.

Warner said the worker pleaded guilty in July, after the case had been prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of West Virginia.

“The system worked,” Warner said.

Warner, a Republican and retired military officer, has monitored elections in Afghanistan and other trouble spots on the globe through his former work with the U.S. State Department.

Last year, he received national attention after launching a drive that led to more than 100,000 West Virginians registering to vote.

Included in those numbers were some 30,000 high-schoolers, soon to be of voting age at the time of the drive.

West Virginia Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito also discounted Trump’s remarks during the debate.

Warner told Mountain State voters they can be confident and assured when casting their ballots in November, no matter the delivery system.

“Decide, today, how you want to vote, and then go do it,” he said.

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