Voter Fraud Allegation Rocks Paterson City Council Election

PATERSON, N.J. (CBS 2) — There was a stunning development in a local election on Wednesday night.

The New Jersey attorney general has reversed a court ruling, declaring evidence of fraud in the Paterson City Council race from last May.

And the fallout has included nearly a dozen arrests.

Changing names — a sign of what may come on the Paterson City Council.

Planning Commissioner Ken McDaniel may take the seat of incumbent Councilman Rigo Rodriguez, now that the attorney general has said she has found evidence of vote tampering in last May’s election.

“I got nothing to do with it. I’m just a candidate. People voted for me,” Rodriguez said.

When asked if he believes there was fraud, McDaniel told CBS 2’s Derricke Dennis, “Oh yes. No question. There were too many irregularities.”

It started last May when McDaniel was declared victorious, but then out of the blue 49 uncounted absentee votes appeared.

McDaniel was announced as the winner, and then 21 days later an automatic recount was conducted, turning the election in Rodriguez’s favor.

“And they counted them, and I became successful,” Rodriguez said.

Then a judge decided there was no tampering and no fraud, so the recount results stood.

“I don’t find certainly voter fraud occurred here,” the judge said.

But now in a startling reversal, AG Paula Dow believes she has found fraud, arresting 11 election volunteers in just the last two days, among them 51-year-old Dalila Rodriguez.

“It’s not true. I didn’t do nothing wrong,” Dalila Rodriguez said.

She said she’s not related to Councilman Rigo Rodriguez, and admitted she wanted him to win, but said she never tampered with a ballot.

“They can say whatever they say, it’s my words,” Dalila Rodriguez said.

McDaniel said if the AG can prove fraud, he would want his council seat.

“I don’t think that we would want any of our elected officials to benefit from corruption or fraud,” McDaniel said.

For now it’s business as usual in the Paterson City Council. The attorney general has not said what the next step will be, except that the investigation is ongoing, and more arrests are imminent.

Those suspected of vote tampering face between three and 10 years in prison, if convicted.

  • Ed Boes

    Yes there are corrupt people in both parties, however it would not be fair to not point out that the majority of the corruption, especially in voters fraud, is on the Democratic side. Yes DeLay was a crook, but look at Jefferson’s freezer, Chicago record of dead folks voting, Rangle’s assertion he did not line his pockets, yet saved money in his pockets by not paying taxes, voter fraud in Minnesota. Democrats in Florida wanting to count chads, but not count military absentee ballots, New York not sending out absentee ballots to the military on time. Yes Dems are more guilty.

  • Kevin

    Pick up a copy of the local newspaper the Paterson Pulse and you’ll get the 411 on what’s going one, some info is on: but most of it is on the paper, you’ll learn about the Democratic control over Paterson. Last month 7 members of the city council stood on the steps of city hall and declared it was supporting the Democratic ticket. However the city is legally non-partisen. But check out this local paper and get the truth.. you’ll find there is a lot more to this story than the big media is telling.

  • Dario

    yeag these are Democrates for sure, becasue yahoo news does not say them to be Repuclicans… it always hides Democrate corruption by name…. maybe the residue of the obama, acorn people……

    • thekatd

      The report is from CBS not Yahoo.

    • Jonathan

      Dario, That’s a pretty ignorant thing to say. Both parties in New Jersey and other states have been guilty of crimes. Tom DeLay wasn’t convicted because he was a Democrat. He was a GOP leader in Congress! But this statement isn’t directed at Republicans. Corruption has gone on in both parties and we haven’t seen the end of it. Do you know how many Republican speakers of the house went down in scandal in the last twenty years?

    • Nimrod

      That was probably the smartest thing I’ve ever heard in my entire life. You’re really really really really really really smart. Thanks!

  • Nimrod

    GMK, I don’t think anyone, liberal or conservative, would condone voter fraud in any way in the United States. We’ll all argue like hell until the election results come through, but the American people shouldn’t defraud each other. That’s what politicians are for.

  • roman

    Instead of teaching the rest of the world about fair elections we seem to be adopting all the corruption and fraud that is at the root of their misery and turmoil.

    • MIkerrr

      Right. We’re adopting corruption and fraud along with immigrants from those countries. Was I the only one who noted the names of the people involved in this story? Just sayin’. . .

  • GMK

    All Liberals no doubt…the most corrupt nation in the free world!!!!!!

  • Robert Hall

    What party did they vote for? Come on AP give us the truth?

  • Bob

    10 years should be the minimum sentence for voter fraud.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Giving Tuesday
Charles Osgood Event

Listen Live