NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

May 7, 2013

Board of Registrars will not investigate Saab

Former candidate removed his name from Salisbury voter list

(Continued)

As a result of McDonald’s letter, the day after he lost the election, Saab’s letter, dated May 1, arrived at the town clerk’s office written on Saab’s business stationery listing his North End Boulevard address. Saab wrote in his letter that given McDonald’s offer, he was “officially” requesting his name “be removed from the Town of Salisbury’s voter list.” Saab also apologized for any inconvenience.

Attached to Saab’s letter to McDonald was a copy of another also dated May 1, but addressed to the Salem, N.H., town clerk. With his Salem, N.H., property address listed, Saab asked his name be removed from Salem’s voter list.

McDonald said Saab can re-register to vote in Salisbury, but added that he promised her that when he did, he will have a Massachusetts license and his car registered in-state.

McDonald recommended to registrars Walter Sidley, Robert Becotte and Chairman Thomas Keane, that they take no further action because Saab took his name off the voter list.

During the discussion, Gallagher requested the registrars nullify Saab’s candidacy. McDonald said she didn’t know if the registrars had the authority to do that, but that she would ask the town’s attorney.

Gallagher also said the registrars shouldn’t drop their investigation, saying it appeared “evasive,” that they should proceed and get to the truth of the issue.

“I’m concerned with accountability here,” Gallagher said. “This could set a bad precedent.”

Saab was registered to vote simultaneously in both Salisbury and Salem, N.H., and the possibility exists that he could have voted in both states. The registrars were asked if they would call Salem to get his voting record to ensure that hadn’t happened. Sidley and McDonald were adamant that the board would not take that step.

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