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New state representative gives up seat over campaign mailer

December 6, 2018

WARREN, R.I. (AP) — A newly elected Rhode Island state representative says he is stepping down after facing mounting criticism over his misleading local officials about a nonexistent campaign mailer.

Democratic Rep.-elect Laufton Ascencao said Wednesday he will not take his seat. He says he has realized his “personal priorities are no longer what they should be.”

The 25-year-old was accused of providing a fake invoice to prove he sent a political mailer that was never sent.

He acknowledged the deception after the Warren Town Democratic Committee filed a complaint with state elections officials.

The Rhode Island Coalition Against Gun Violence withdrew its support for Ascencao Wednesday before his announcement, saying his actions are a “betrayal” of trust.

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