The Republican National Lawyers Association, the GOP-affiliated group which has focused on the issue of voter fraud and is offering election training around the country, received a large influx in donations in the third quarter of 2010 — mostly from two contributors.
The RNLA took in $150,000 from Richard DeVos — the Amway co-founder and Orlando Magics owner who Forbes named the 176th richest person in the world — in September and $50,000 from Paul E. Singer in July.DeVos is listed as a philanthropist in the employ of the RDV Corporation in Grand Rapids, MI, called “the management firm for the family of Mr. Richard M. DeVos and provides investment management, estate planning, tax and personal services, and foundation administration to the DeVos family”). His family has been longtime supporters of conservative causes.
Singer, the president of Elliott Associates, LP, is a close friend of Rudy Giuliani who has given millions of dollars to Republican organizations.
The RNLA — a group which has presented voter fraud as a major threat to the outcome of elections despite the lack of evidence that such crimes are widespread — has started an “unprecedented” election education effort which “aid the recruitment of volunteer lawyers to assist the more than twenty governorships, ten U.S. Senate seats and seventy U.S. House seats that are up for grabs in November,” according to a message from President Charles Bell, Jr.
Election experts had said for years that claims of voter fraud are exaggerated, and that stringent voter ID requirements that are often the byproduct of such worries can lead to a decreased turnout from minority voters.
Messages left for representatives of DeVos and Singer were not immediately returned.