More than a thousand voter registrations removed in Cleveland, Columbus

HOUSTON, TX. -- March 10, 2016: True the Vote (TTV), the nation's leading voters’ rights and election integrity organization, today announced details surrounding its effort to help Cuyahoga and Franklin County officials in Ohio remove more than a thousand duplicate voter registrations ahead of voting in 2016.

Upon receipt of True the Vote’s research, 711 duplicate voter registrations were removed in Cuyahoga County, while 465 sets were processed in Franklin County.

“Because of Ohio’s consistent role as a decisive swing state in America’s elections, it has a duty to ensure that its voter records are in the best shape possible,” True the Vote Founder Catherine Engelbrecht said. “Having duplicate voters in Ohio’s poll books not only creates confusion at the polling place, but raises the possibility of fraudulent double voting. The Buckeye State has recently seen first-hand just how far some are willing to go to see their candidate or cause win.”

Significant Evidence of Foul Play

Roughly 30 percent of voters registered twice in the Cleveland area evidenced falsified birthdates, Social Security Numbers and other identifiers, originally submitted by Democratic-leaning organizations (i.e. ACORN, Field Works, The Strategy Network, Organizing for America), according to the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections. Each confirmed duplicate voter registration was subsequently purged or merged into an existing, verifiable record.

“While many voter records may become duplicated due to data management breakdowns, you have a different issue entirely when nearly a third of the irregularities show a pattern of intentional forgery,” Engelbrecht said. “Americans working in the polls and casting ballots must be extra vigilant this year to help spot irregularities that can throw an entire election into question.”

ACORN’s Record of Questionable Voter Registration Activities

The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) held a well-established track record of supplying local election officials with questionable voter registration forms across Midwestern and other political battleground states for years. The organization boasted more than 1.3 million voter registrations submitted in 2008 alone. After its formal dissolution, 18 employees were convicted or admitted guilt to committing election crimes. Significant amounts of their work were officially questioned:

  • In Ohio, a Cleveland man claimed he was given money and goods to register to vote dozens times, resulting in subpoenas;
  • In Indiana, more than 2,000 applications were falsified as part of a batch delivered hours before the registration deadline; and
  • In Florida, 11 ACORN workers were arrested after submitting roughly 1,400 applications with approximately 900 of those falsified.

Prior Maintenance Successes

Although True the Vote does not have authority to lay citizen challenges on voter registration files, it is allowed to review maintenance records held by the counties in question, according to public inspection rights under the National Voter Registration Act. As of this release, TTV has been notified that thousands of duplicate voter registration pairs have been removed in a similar effort in North Carolina.

True the Vote originally brought a federal lawsuit against the State of Ohio in August 2012 over allegations of voter roll maintenance failures, finding three counties with more registered voters than voting-age residents. The suit ended in a favorable settlement agreement in January 2014 with measurable reductions in bloated voter rolls sustained thereafter.  

 

True the Vote (TTV) is an IRS-designated 501(c)(3) voters’ rights organization, founded to inspire and equip voters for involvement at every stage of our electoral process. TTV empowers organizations and individuals across the nation to actively protect the rights of legitimate voters, regardless of their political party affiliation. For more information, please visit www.truethevote.org.

VoteStand is now available for both iOS (Apple) and Android devices free of charge. For more detailed technical information, visit the official VoteStand website at www.votestand.com.

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Texas will get another chance to make its case for a voter ID requirement law that a panel of federal judges has previously rejected. The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals said Wednesday that the entire court will hear Veasey vs. Abbott in an en banc hearing.

Texas’ Attorney General released a statement saying, “Today’s decision is a strong step forward in our efforts to defend the state’s Voter ID laws. Safeguarding the integrity of our elections is a primary function of state government and is essential to preserving our democratic process.”

A hearing date has not yet been set.

“Voting’s been pretty steady… We’ve had a pretty good turnout. No real problems with voter ID.”

County election officials across Mississippi consistently reported that the state’s primary voting process ran smoothly on Tuesday and voters “don’t mind showing their ID.”

The Mississippi house “overwhelmingly passed election and voting reforms pushed by Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, including a major rewrite of election code and measures to allow online voter registration and early voting up to 14 days before an election.”

“Today we turn the page on 125 years of Mississippi history,” Hosemann said. “To have a complete in toto revision of our election laws shows that we have bipartisan trust in each other in Mississippi. We trusted each other on voter ID before and we were the only state not sued, and now we have total bipartisan support for these changes.”

The bills move to the Senate.

Testimony in the Democratic Party of Virginia’s effort to undo the state’s popular voter ID legislation in court ended Wednesday with expert witnesses “attesting that they could not definitively say that the law was intended to blunt the influence of minority voters,” as the plaintiffs claim.

Karen L. Owen, an assistant professor of public administration at Reinhardt University in Georgia, offered alternative reasons for why General Assembly members may have voted for the law.   She said legislators may have considered broad public support for a voter identification law, citing polls from the Pew Research Center and Quinnipiac University; were responding to constituents’ concerns about voter fraud; hoped to ensure public confidence in ballots that were cast; sought to enact a best practice; or wanted to prevent voting fraud…

Daniel J. Palazzolo, a professor of political science at the University of Richmond, similarly testified that there was not enough evidence to conclude that the law was passed to suppress minority votes.

On Tuesday, several former state and local election officials testified that they were not aware of any eligible voter who has been denied the right to cast a ballot because of Virginia’s photo voter ID requirement.

“None,” said Cameron Quinn, a former state elections official who from 2011 until last year was the general registrar for Fairfax County… Justin Riemer, a former member of the Virginia State Board of Elections and Donald Palmer, the former secretary of the board, also testified Tuesday that they were not aware of anyone unable to vote because of the photo requirement.

A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds 69% agree that “voters should be required to show photo identification such as a driver’s license before being allowed to vote.”

How the Obama DOJ enables noncitizen voter registration

For weeks now, we’ve been exposing the quick-moving strategy of progressive interest groups that are litigating to remove citizenship verification measures in a small handful of states -- before it spreads to others. Last week, the country saw that even the Obama Justice Department is willing to carry their water, despite the DOJ’s responsibility to defend federal laws and regulations. By now, you know the who and what of the story. Let’s look at the how.

Unlike most federal agencies indexed within the Executive Branch, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) is an independent office. Its members are appointed equally by Congress and the President. This framework was designed to engineer compromise and cooperation, regardless of who controlled the other branches of government. Under normal circumstances, any litigation directed toward the EAC would leave the DOJ duty-bound to represent the Commission in court.

Last week, the DOJ went out of its way to advocate for the plaintiffs’ positions, while serving as defense counsel. These actions led the EAC to demand its own representation in court to defend recent actions while it continues to face stiff pushback from the Administration’s lawyers. TTV Advisory Board member Hans A. von Spakovsky’s latest column on the matter further explains just how far the DOJ is willing to go to block citizenship checks in voter registration; read it here. Then, stay tuned. The next court date is set for March 9 to iron out issues of discovery and a preliminary injunction.

 

Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.

 

Join us for the March National Webinar: Who’s REALLY Voting in America?

Between federal court drama over citizenship verification for voter registrations and the general open-borders atmosphere in the southern states, the March 2016 webinar could not be timelier. Join us as we discuss just how vulnerable our existing voting systems are to noncitizen participation. Sign up today to reserve your spot. The call begins at 7 PM Eastern time (6 PM Central) on March 8.

 

Pro Tip: What to do when your voting machine malfunctions

It’s that time again – millions of Americans are hitting the polls for primaries or are waiting in eager anticipation for November. We’ve seen local news reports of touchscreen voting systems switching choices, or malfunctioning entirely. So, what are you supposed to do when that happens? First…don’t panic. Remember, these machines were likely purchased in the early 2000’s after the Bush v. Gore fiasco. Just think about it: do you still use a cell phone from that long ago? Do you use a computer that old? (We didn’t really think so!) These machines are old, and errors will occasionally occur. If you see your vote switch or any similar issue, tell the poll workers present to resolve the matter. They will likely assign you to a new booth or recalibrate the system on the spot. After you’ve finished, shoot us a note through our app, VoteStand. Solution…so easy.

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