Barack Obama's campaign has called on the Nevada Democratic Party to probe tactics by the Hillary Clinton campaign that it says "violated party rules and the rights of voters" in last Saturday's Nevada caucuses.
The Obama campaign charged that Clinton campaign workers told precinct captains to close the doors to caucuses at 11:30 a.m., a half-hour before the party-sanctioned start time. Once the caucus doors were shut, no more participants were permitted inside.
A letter sent to Nevada State Democratic Chair Jill Derby by Obama’s campaign attorney Bob Bauer also stated that Clinton campaign workers blocked Obama voters from signing in at the caucuses, preventing them from participating, and that some ballot cards given to attendees were pre-marked for Hillary.
According to the Web site Alternet.org, the letter cited a Clinton campaign document that said, "It is not illegal unless they [the temporary precinct chair] tell you so."
Bauer wrote: "This certainly suggests that, for the Clinton campaign, the operative standard was, simply and only, what it could get away with.”
The Obama campaign is not seeking to challenge the results of the caucuses, where Clinton won the popular vote count but Obama won one more delegate.
On Wednesday, Clinton spokesman Phil Singer said, "Sen. Obama lost and now his campaign is acting out."
But Obama's charges against Clinton's Nevada campaign began emerging on the day after the caucuses. On Sunday, Obama campaign manager David Plouffe sent this statement to volunteers:
"We currently have reports of over 200 separate incidents of trouble at caucus sites, including doors being closed up to 30 minutes early, registration forms running out so people were turned away, and ID being requested and checked in a non-uniform fashion…
“These kinds of Clinton campaign tactics were part of an entire week's worth of false, divisive attacks designed to mislead caucus-goers and discredit the caucus itself.”
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