The Vermont Republican Party takes the integrity of Vermont’s elections seriously.  We will vigorously defend open and free access to the polls and will strongly oppose all forms of voter deception and voter suppression.  Likewise, any accusations of voter deception should not be taken lightly. Everyone — elected officials, members of the administration, candidates and Vermont voters — should demand proof for any such claim.

The news of deceptive robo-calls in Vermont that attempt to trick voters into believing the wrong date for Vermont’s August 9th primary are deeply disturbing.  We strongly encourage a full and complete investigation into the source of these calls and urge that those responsible for them be held fully accountable — regardless of their campaign affiliation, political party, location or motivation.

We also strongly condemn accusations of voter suppression that have no basis in sound evidence or fact. This accusation is of the highest order and requires the highest level of certainty before being publicly made.

Last night we asked the Bruce Lisman campaign to reveal the evidence they had to attribute their accusation of voter deception to the Phil Scott campaign.  Hours after our deadline we have not seen any evidence directly linking Phil Scott’s campaign to these fraudulent phone calls.

Nearly all statewide candidates — Republican and Democrat — use phone banks and robo-calls in their campaigns.  The mere presence of such an expenditure on a campaign finance report is certainly not a direct and irrefutable link between any candidate and these deceptive phone calls.  It is also no basis for public accusations of responsibility.

Without solid evidence, these accusations have no place in a political campaign — especially a Vermont Republican campaign

As mentioned in our statement yesterday, we call on the Lisman campaign to retract their accusations and take immediate and decisive actions to determine who within their campaign organization is responsible for making these claims with no direct and irrefutable evidence to support them.  We fully expect that those responsible will be held accountable.

If there is any evidence supporting this accusation not yet revealed by the Lisman campaign, we demand that it be made public immediately with full disclosure.

We ask that all candidates for public office in Vermont — Republicans, Democrats, Progressives and Independents — support the integrity of our electoral process.  We further ask that they reject all forms of voter deception and suppression, and refrain from any unsubstantiated claims.

Vermonters deserve no less.