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Florida Elections Official Places State’s Potentially Ineligible Voter Tally at 180,000

| May 11, 2012

A few registered voters. (KiHoon Park)

The full universe of potentially ineligible voters that state elections officials plan to check for possible removal from the rolls is about 180,000, a spokesman for the Division of Elections said Friday.

Elections spokesman Chris Cate told the News Service that in all, when matching voter rolls against newly available citizenship data from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, officials found that number of possible matches, and began further investigating each one to see if they were likely to be wrongly registered to vote.

Officials reported earlier this week that they had forwarded the first batch of those names, about 2,600 to local supervisors of elections for further review and for each voter to be notified that they were on a list of people suspected of being illegally registered.

“Everyone of those individuals would be contacted by supervisors,” Cate said.

But earlier this week it wasn’t clear how many more names might eventually be checked. On Friday, Cate said the larger number was the total identified so far, but that it will take some time to further cull through that list to determine which names are most likely accurately identified as non-citizens.

“We’re still in the early stages of combing through that 180,000,” Cate told the News Service. “We have to respect every voter,” and err on the side of not purging them from the rolls if they’re legitimately registered, he said. Some additional portion of the full list of possible non-citizens will eventually be identified as likely to be wrongly registered and sent to local supervisors for possible purging. Whether all of them will be vetted before this year’s election remains unclear.

“There’s not a timeline, we are moving as promptly as we can while still being thorough,” Cate said.

Some Democrats and voting rights groups have criticized the new effort to find suspected ineligible voters. An ACLU official said this week that state officials were looking for cover while trying to disenfranchise voters.

Cate said the idea for cross-checking voter rolls with new citizenship data from the highway safety agency came from the motor vehicle department and the elections officials, not the governor’s office or the Legislature.

“Last year they (Highway Safety) started reaching out to agencies to see what info Highway Safety had that could benefit other agencies,” Cate said. “We recognized they had this non-citizen information and we jumped at the chance to see if we could improve our rolls.”

Many of those identified so far have been in South Florida. Local media in Miami reported this week that the supervisor in Miami-Dade County had been sent about 2,000 of the 2,600 initially identified suspect voters.

–David Royce, News Service of Florida

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7 Responses for “Florida Elections Official Places State’s Potentially Ineligible Voter Tally at 180,000”

  1. Outsider says:

    It’s interesting when only Democrats seem to resist any attempt to identify fraudulent voters; that is, except when you’re an aspiring young politician named Barack Obama. Yes, when long-time civil rights activist Alice Palmer challenged the future president for her former Illinois state senate seat, which she had bequeathed to him for pursuit of bigger fish to fry, Obama examind every registered voter who signed Ms. Palmer’s election petition, and he found many signatures which were supposedly invalid or fraudulent. He was in fact able to disqualify enough signatures to prevent poor old Ms. Alice Palmer from even qualifying for his seat, thereby guaranteeing himself an unchallenged return to the senate. And that, my friends, is the rest of the story.

  2. B. Claire says:

    “elections officials plan to check for possible removal from the rolls is about 180,000, ”

    Funny how there’s always enough money to carry out right wing nut voter suppression efforts! But sure better cut out that wastefull meals on wheels boon doggle.

    The election-year effort, led by a Republican-appointed secretary of state, has increasingly become a focus of concern among Democrats, liberals and civil-liberties groups. They worry that the state could wind up removing LAWFUL voters from the rolls.

    Read more here:

  3. Outsider says:

    Well B. Claire, if you read the only other (my) post, it would be evident to you that voter suppression efforts are alive and well in the Democratic party, starting right at the top. But of course, let’s not let facts get in the way of your supposition.

  4. B. Claire says:

    In the Obama instance…the election office removed actual FAKE NAMES… unlike the weasel-ie tea party states who don’t’ even let voters register or get near the ballot box because of making unheard of in over 200 years….impossible new ‘Requirements’ of both registrants and voters.

    • Think first, act second says:

      ACORN submitted thousands of illegal registrations, which resulted in their dissolution. Why would it be necessary for an election office to remove “FAKE NAMES” when proof of being LEGALLY able to vote can be proven. What is there about proving you are a U.S. resident that is offensive. The constitution gives us the right to choose our representatives, it does not give foreigners that right. I want every legally entitled voter the ability to vote, and every non legal not to be able to, it is really pretty simple.

  5. Linda H. says:

    Here is a site all should read for Florida voting laws:

    The laws are in place to protect us from being removed from the voting lists improperly and if you go to 3rd Party Voter Registrations, there is a list of which organizations in Florida are authorized to register voters, along with the laws and requirements for putting yourself on that list and the legal procedures which must be followed.

    I hope this helps. If you have any other questions, contact them. You are paying their salaries.

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