Connecticut family admits voting in Vermont, says Condos’ office gave OK

Photo by Michael Bielawski

SMALL TOWN DRAMA: Carol Easter, town clerk-treasurer for Victory, Vt., gets advice from the town’s lawyer, Daniel Richardson. She is one of many defendants in a case that accuses her and her neighbors of participating in voter fraud.

VICTORY, Vt. — A Connecticut family listed among the defendants in an ongoing voter fraud lawsuit has admitted voting in Vermont elections, according to public court documents. Family members said they got approval to do so from the Vermont Secretary of State’s office.

Interrogatories by the town of Victory posed to four members of the Flanigan family — parents Robert and Toni Flanigan, and adult sons Brendan and Robert Flanigan III — indicate that the defendants have never lived in Vermont. Instead, the family members live and work in Granby, Connecticut.

While the parents own a second home in Victory, where they visit for overnight stays once or twice a month, all four Flanigans are on Victory’s voter checklist and voted there in recent elections.

According to a July 5 counterclaim filed on behalf of the Flanigans by their attorney, Hans Huessy, “All of the Defendants voted against Plaintiff in the recent election.”

That plaintiff, Victory resident Tracey Martel, ran for town clerk and town treasurer on Town Meeting Day, but lost both races to incumbent Carol Easter by fewer than four votes. Martel claims voter fraud is taking place in the town. The case is playing out in Essex County Superior Court.

RELATED: Vermont attorney asks court to cancel election over alleged voter fraud

In a series of interrogatories included in a July 20 Memorandum in Opposition to the Flanigans’ Motion to Amend, parents Robert and Toni Flanigan state that while they don’t live in Victory, they intend to retire there in about two years. The sons also plan to relocate to Victory with their parents at that time, since they live together.

It’s unclear, however, where in Victory the Flanigans intend to retire. They stated that their Victory Hill Road property in Victory has been for sale within the past year, and was advertised as such as late as March. The Flanigans have since taken the property off the market.

Though all four family members refused to state whether they are “residents” of either Connecticut or Vermont, Robert and Toni Flanigan admitted that for the past six years they have had Connecticut drivers licenses, listed their residential Connecticut dwelling on IRS income tax forms and paid residential property taxes in Granby, Connecticut.

They also admitted they do not pay the Vermont residential tax rate on their Vermont property and have not filed a homestead declaration in the state.

Toward the end of the approximately 30 questions posed to each defendant, the town asks the Flanigans about the voter registration forms they filled out to get on the Victory checklist, noting that all four family members left blank the section asking if they were residents of Vermont and had taken the Voter’s Oath.

To that question, parents Robert and Toni Flanigan gave the same answer: “Before submitting the form I spoke to the Secretary of State Elections office and I was told not to fill it out until we became full-time residents when we retire. They also told me I was eligible to vote in Victory.”

Sons Brendan and Robert III, in their answers, cite their parents’ contact with the Vermont Secretary of State’s office as the reason they left the voter registration section blank.

Photo courtesy of state of Vermont

Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos

Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos, in an email to True North Reports, said he is “not aware of any statements made by any of the defendants in the case” and “cannot comment on any of the facts or allegations in that ongoing court action.”

He did, however, attempt to clarify the law regarding voters with multiple homes.

“I will point out that, under the law, a person may be a resident of a town for voting purposes as long as they have ‘an intent to maintain a principal dwelling place in the town indefinitely and to return there if temporarily absent, coupled with an act or acts consistent with that intent.’ 17 VSA 2122(b).” Condos wrote. “There is no requirement, for instance, that they sleep a certain number of nights there each year, or have been physically present there for any set amount of time.”

He added that his staff is careful regarding inquiries from new voters “not to make any conclusions or determinations about particular circumstances,” adding that those are left up to the town clerk and the Board of Civil Authority.

“My staff refers to the law and tells the person that they need to determine for themselves whether they qualify under the legal standard,” Condos said. “We have not received any specific complaints and when and if we do, they would be forwarded to the Attorney General’s office for investigation and enforcement.”

Condos is an outspoken opponent of the bipartisan Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, and has called upon the attorney general of Vermont to help him deny the commission access to state voter checklist data.

It’s unclear how many times the Flanigans have voted in Vermont elections. However, the elder Flanigans have been on the Victory voter checklist for several years, with their two sons being added later.

When St. Johnsbury attorney Deborah Bucknam in a recent court proceeding asked Victory Town Clerk Carol Easter about adding the Flanigan sons to the checklist, Easter took her Fifth Amendment privilege.

Bucknam and client Tracey Martel allege in a March 21 complaint and mandamus petition that Victory’s voter checklist contains unqualified voters and non-residents, 11 of whom cast absentee ballots on Town Meeting Day. The complaint further states that multiple non-residents were illegally added to the voter checklist, in violation of a constitutional mandate that elections be “free and without corruption.”

CLARIFICATION: This clarification was added at 1:51 p.m. Nov. 8 to note that the Flanigans have been the defendants of a pending complaint alleging voter fraud — this does not mean they have been found guilty of voter fraud. Moreover, this story and its headline make no mention of tax fraud. According to attorney Hans Huessy, the lawyer representing the Flanigans, the court has since “dismissed all claims for fines and penalties” against his clients. In a Nov. 8 email to True North Reports, Huessy states, “This case involves a good faith disagreement over the meaning of Vermont’s Residency statute. That statute includes language that suggests a party can claim to be a resident of a town if they intend to live there at some point in the future.”

Lou Varricchio is a freelance reporter for True North Reports. Send him news tips at

Image courtesy of Michael Bielawski/TNR

18 thoughts on “Connecticut family admits voting in Vermont, says Condos’ office gave OK

  1. I keep saying I am an independent for a reason. I don’t subscribe to voting in two states. I am a Vermonter, and when I’ve left the state for another while working or knowing i’d be there during a time of an election. I would register there and forfeit my vote in Vermont. However, I’m sick of the nitpicking, and conservatives that do nothing for anyone but themselves. The democrats and liberals, doing nothing but for the wealthy. The State of VT overall, allowing the rich to run everything with people that have not experience. We have bigger fish to fry, right now, with all the addiction problems, health care problems and think of what the current administration of this country is doing. We will be at war soon if someone doesn’t stop him. Pay your taxes, vote and live where you vote, that’s the only answer. One residence one vote. You should need to currently be residing in the state you are voting in. It’s these small towns with elections won or lost by 3-4 votes that cost tax dollars more money that could be spent on fighting the drug epidemic and paying for health care. Homes for the homeless, especially the veterans. We have diddly when it comes to helping people here. Especially when we have such a big populace that has the NIMBY attitude. Screw the flatlanders, I’ve heard about them all my life, and it’s true, They come into our state, and then sue because they don’t like the smell or noise of the farm across the street from their new property. Whats up with that. At 65 years old, I think I am understanding a bit more how this crooked political system works. Those that have get more and those that don’t, well, you know, they just ask a politician that will lie to keep their job, once elected.

    • I agree with much of what you say. As I said earlier my main residence was Maryland and that’s where I vote. When I become a Vermont resident in January this is where I will vote. My husbands family roots are from Vermont. We chose Vermont to retire to because we want to live like Vermonters. We love the tractor noise and the wonderful smells. We love the town government system too. We don’t mind that it takes an hour to run out and pick up bread and milk. We love that if you need help your neighbors will come and help you and we would help them if they needed. Sitting in the front porch and watching Mama Bear and her cubs picking berries by our pond or the Moose in the marsh never gets old.
      The county where we live in Maryland is on the Chesapeake Bay. When we moved there in 1978 it was very rural, peaceful and wonderful… now it is full of people who said they wanted to get away from the rat race by DC but once here they whined about no fast food restaurants, no big box stores .. etc. Once Walmart comes in it is all downhill from there…the farmlands are now subdivisions full of Huge houses built on top of each other.
      We used to call to the stores on the Main Street in Littleton but now it’s just like back in Maryland…. very sad…
      I don’t want to change a thing about Victory except to right the wrong in the voting lists..because what happened in that election shouldn’t have happened here or anywhere

  2. Send Vermont voter list to Washington. I’m told that there is a grand list of state wide voters in Montpelier designed to identify voter fraud. That’s wonderful, but if no one pays any attention to it or refuses to put the hammer to cheaters, what’s the point????????????

  3. When I ran for Sec State in ’08 it became clear that this would be legal as long as they do not vote in their home state. I confirmed that with Bill Sorrel and debated that fact with Deb Markowitz. the problem is there is no easy way to determine if someones even registered in another state.
    In fact I told out of state homeowners in the Valley and other locations they have as much right to vote here as do people living in other states and countries who do not have any property right or even pay taxes.
    about 60% of our school taxes are paid by out of staters. Just think if they all voted what the state and our taxes would be like?
    We have no voting protection laws in Vt. Anyone from anywhere can vote here as long as they say they want to live here.

    • The big question is where do they Vote now and where are the registered… you said as long as they aren’t registered in another state… That’s the bottom line here..

  4. 1] Live in one State as a registered voter.
    2] Join up with 100 neighbors to buy a lot in Colorado or Vermont and then you all register to vote there.
    3] Every four years you and the neighbors get to vote twice for U.S. President (by law in CO, by Democratic Party fiat in VT).
    4] Come to think of it, buy a lot in both States and vote three times. Oh boy! A voter mandate for the Democrats.

    Note: This could be even more productive than the mass-produced absentee ballots scam.

  5. All the more reason Vermont must require voter ID; but the dems/progs – who run everything in VT – will never go for it. They do better with their elections in some 3rd world countries! But then, Victory has a long history of such nonsense. (see Seven Days article of 4-19-17 by Mark Davis)

  6. This is really simple to figure out.
    You need a license to drive and must show police if stopped.
    You need a license to hunt and must show game warden if stopped.
    You need a license to qualify for many trades or professions.
    But everyone should be allowed to vote without showing an id.??
    Just ask yourself who are they that don’t want voter id?
    That’s your answer and to stop voting for them and the party they represent is the solution.

  7. Wow, what a surprise. Vermont, being infiltrated by flatlanders, is being over run by NY, CT, NJ, and MA values. I can’t help but wonder if clowns like these people aslo have a home in FL or elsewhere from which they also mail in votes. Now that the libs have virtually destroyed any manufacturing in our state, they want to turn it into a ‘paradise’ for themselves by electing their kind.
    When they are thru, there will be no one left to ‘serve their needs’. As a kid, I worked summers on Cape Cod. Now, the cape has a major problem because no-one can afford to live there that wants to work in hotels, stores, restaurants etc. Vermont is going that way, unfortunately by illegal voting. Lock ’em up.

  8. Most Vermonters tend to be trusting, tolerant, with a live & let live attitude. Trouble is, that’s allowed liberal flatlanders to take advantage over the past 25 years and the change in our state is obvious.

  9. Voter fraud is real and I have a Facebook page where people can post such stories. I am putting this story one up there in a minute. If you have something to post on this or other voter fraud stories, feel free to go and post them. Then write Secretary of State Condos and tell him to cooperate with the Presidential Advisory Commission on Voter Integrity. What does he have to hide? Here is the link to “Voter Fraud is Real” Facebook page.

  10. I think Condos is 180 degrees off the mark in his interpretation of the law. To me, the law is read as if a VERMONTER, to begin with, is allowed to leave their residence and take a sabatical, an extended vacation, a job transfer or medical procedure time out in another state or have a second home somewhere else. The key here is the primary residence. It does not imply that non-resident gets to be on the VT voter roles by merely intending to retire here or spend some week ends skiing or whatever. Colorado made a clear legislative decision some time ago to let second home owners vote in Colorado elections. Vermont needs to clarify this by passing a referendum stating such intent.

    • Totally agree with you. My husband and I have owned property in Victory since 2003. We pay non resident taxes and we will become permanent residents in January 2018. Tracey Martel is my next door neighbor and good friend but we all knew that my husband and I weren’t legally eligible to vote for her. We are registered to vote in Maryland and we do. Even though we are working toward being residents of Victory and Vermont that won’t happen until after January 2018. Then we will register to vote in Vermont and forfeit any further right to vote in Maryland. It’s 2017 and we have been planning to retire to Victory since 2003. That’s why we bought our property. Condos makes it sound like we should have been voting here since 2003. That makes no sense at all.

  11. No wonder Condos is an opponent of election integrity! Democrats only like democracy when they are on the side that’s winning. What a low life!

  12. Cockroaches, that kind of says it all for the Progressive Liberal Democrats in VT.

    The sad part is the elected officials ( Condos ) denying or getting caught it makes you wonder. Well, not really!! Time to fix the problem.

    Make it mandatory two forms of ID should be needed, one photo ID ( driver Lic ) any utility bill showing ( residents name & address ) And all the same day voter registration non sense … give me a break , if you don’t know there’s an election going on , then you don’t deserve to vote! Corruption runs deep in Local , State and Federal elections . It’s time to crush these roaches.

  13. What a surprise!! Just like cockroaches; if there is one, there are a thousand. No wonder Condos doesn’t want Vermont voting records turned over to the Feds. This state – run by Democrats – is so corrupt. But we knew that.

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