County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver issued a statement Thursday morning referring to an Albuquerque man registering his dog to vote.
Oliver said the man could potentially face prosection for voter registration fraud, a fourth degree felony in New Mexico.
“It is very disheartening that someone would attempt to present fraudulent information to test a system that the state legislature has intended to foster participation in the voter process,” Oliver said in the statement. “I would warn those individuals who think this type of activity is a joke or a “gotcha” that, regardless of their intentions, they have broken the law and will therefore have to be subject to due process of law.”
An Albuquerque man saw a voter registration booth on the University of New Mexico campus a few weeks ago and wanted to see how easy it would be to register his dog to vote, KOB-TV reported.
The man — whose name wasn’t given — got his dog’s voter registration card in the mail on Wednesday, he told Eyewitness News 4.
“They should verify. Somebody should have verified this information and somebody should have come out and took a look at exactly who it was,” the man told KOB-TV. “But I made up a birth date, and I made up a Social Security number and I had a voter registration card in my hand for Buddy two weeks later.”
The Bernalillo County Clerk’s Office said state law does not require proof of your Social Security number, date of birth or even your name, telling KOB-TV what the dog owner did was voter fraud.
The clerk’s office also said it looks over all registration applications that come in through third parties, but it appears that Buddy the dog made it through this time, Eyewitness News 4 said.
The dog owner said, however, he has no intention of letting Buddy vote.
This isn’t exactly unprecedented in Albuquerque, though.
Back in October 2008, the Albuquerque Journal’s Dan McKay talked to Don Pizzolato, an Albuquerque contractor who wrote on the Duke City Fix website that he’d registered his dog a few years earlier outside Walmart.
“I fully expected the form to be returned to me,” Pizzolato told McKay in an interview. But he got a registration card in the mail a few weeks later.
Then, as now, the County Clerk’s Office contacted law enforcement authorities about possible prosecution for voter fraud, a fourth-degree felony, but there was no word as to whether Pizzolato was hauled into court.