Election board affirms Grimes amid allegations of wrongdoing

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes and Kentucky Board of Elections Executive Director Jared Dearing sit next to each other during election board meetings, but they’re far from on the same page.

The Board of Elections met for nearly three hours behind closed doors Tuesday in a specially called meeting after Dearing made accusations that Grimes misused a voter registration database and told staff not to follow a federal court order, for political purposes.

The bipartisan board unanimously voted to reaffirm the secretary of state’s role as the state’s chief election officer.  The 4-0 vote on a resolution reiterated that Grimes has authority to oversee the board’s day-to-day operations and is required to have access to the state’s voter database.

Dearing left the meeting without speaking to reporters, but did leave with his job as executive director.

“I vigorously dispute the contents, the very bizarre contents, baseless allegations of the staff member,” Grimes told reporters after the meeting.

The Kentucky Republican Party says it’s asking the Department of Justice to launch a federal investigation.

“Despite having a Democratic majority on the board, it is telling that Secretary Grimes was denied in her attempt to fire yet another whistle-blower, this one a well-heeled, handpicked Louisville Democrat whose wife is John Yarmuth’s campaign manager,” the party said in a statement.

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