Proof to Gemma Claims Trickling Out
Let me just say this: I’m glad the media has gotten over their (semi-justified, though hyperbolic) derision of the Gemma voter fraud presentation (and all the professional analysis claiming nothing doin’) and is looking into his claims. WPRI took the lead, but now the ProJo has some video of a man who claims to be able to bring in numerous mail ballots.
From the story by Zachary Malinowski:
The Journal learned that Robert Cappuccilli, a field operative for Gemma, agreed to wear a hidden microphone and meet with Ramirez behind the campaign headquarters overlooking the Blackstone River and Tolman High School. Cappuccilli did not respond to a request for an interview.
The recording The Journal obtained begins with an investigator setting the stage, with date and time, for the meeting that was about to take place….Cappuccilli brought along a Spanish-speaking woman from the campaign office to help him understand Ramirez, a native of the Dominican Republic who speaks limited English.
During the recording, Cappuccilli and Ramirez have an in-depth conversation about absentee ballot votes and how much the Gemma campaign would have to pay for the service.
In response to several questions from Cappuccilli, Ramirez said he had experience handling absentee ballots for Cicilline and other elected officials — a state representative and a city councilman in Providence. Cappuccilli told Ramirez that he understood the Cicilline campaign paid him $450 a week in cash, an arrangement that Ramirez did not dispute.
Cappuccilli tells Ramirez that the Gemma campaign is willing to hire him to get votes for Gemma, but they want to do it above board, paying him each week with a check, not cash.
Ramirez agrees and provides Cappuccilli with his Social Security number and his driver’s license. They also talk about filling out a 1099 tax form.
Before the deal is completed, Cappuccilli says he wants to make sure that Ramirez can deliver on his promise.
“Do you have mail ballots with you?” Cappuccilli asks. “My neck is on the line with Anthony [Gemma].” They talk about whether he can deliver “300, 400, 500 or 1,000 mail ballots.”
Cappuccilli turns to the Spanish interpreter and says, “Let me tell you something. He has to show me something right now. Don’t take it the wrong way, but I have to make sure he’s not playing both sides.”
Ramirez retreats to his silver compact car and pulls out several absentee ballots. He shows Cappuccilli mail ballots for the coming primary that he said had been cast for Cicilline and Gemma.
Ramirez assures Cappuccilli that he has many “friends” and can coach them to cast their ballots for a certain candidate. He also tells Cappuccilli that he is a notary public and has notarized the ballots himself.
In the recording, Ramirez mentions the names of Latino voters at various addresses and senior high-rises in the capital city.