OLYMPIA, Wash. – Republicans dissatisfied with the balloting that installed Democrat Gov. Christine Gregoire (search) alleged Tuesday that 1,108 felons voted illegally in the 2004 election.
Dino Rossi (search), the failed GOP candidate, is challenging Gregoire's election in court on the grounds that illegal votes and election workers' errors irrevocably tainted the results. He's pushing for a new election.
Gregoire won the election by just 129 votes, after a hand recount of 2.9 million ballots. Rossi had won the first two counts.
Democrats say Gregoire is the legitimate governor, and say Republicans don't have enough evidence to warrant nullifying the election.
Republicans have spent the past couple of months searching for felons who voted despite not having their voting rights restored. Rossi spokeswoman Mary Lane announced the 1,108 number on Tuesday. Lane said 884 of those were found in Democrat-leaning King County (search).
"Most Washingtonians don't believe Christine Gregoire is the legitimately elected governor for a good reason: There are just too many illegal votes and mistakes, especially in King County, to know who won this race," Lane said in a news release.
Rossi filed a lawsuit last month in Chelan County challenging the election. He sued the state, and the Democratic and Republican state parties both intervened in the case.
Democrats say if Republicans have identified felon voters, they should say who they are and present their evidence. So far Rossi's campaign has not publicly disclosed the names of alleged felon voters.
The next step will likely be a hearing to determine what Rossi will need to prove to win his case in court. Judge John E. Bridges declined last Friday to set a trial date, saying he wants both sides to finish their discovery before he decides when the trial should happen.