Spurred by conspiracy theories about the 2020 presidential election, activists across the country are calling for legislation that would allow voters to challenge their right to vote, to challenge the registration of thousands of voters at once. I’m using.
In Iowa, Lynn County Comptroller Joel Miller has handled three voter challenges in the last 15 years. He received a 119 in just two days after Doug Frank, an Ohio educator touring the country spreading suspicion about the 2020 election, drove through the state.
In northern Florida’s Nassau County, just six days before last month’s primary election, two residents challenged nearly 2,000 voter registrations. In Georgia, activists are dropping a ton of challenges in the diverse, Democratic-leaning counties that make up the Atlanta metropolitan area. At the end of last month, in one county he had more than 35,000 people participate.
The Electoral Commission said most of the complaints were irrelevant as they challenged the presence on the ballot of people who were already in the process of being eliminated after leaving the area. Still, the office is busy preparing for his November election, which could result in hundreds of hours of extra work.
Sean Morales Doyle of the Brennan Center for Justice said, “At best they overburden election officials in the run-up to the election, but at worst they get people kicked off lists when they shouldn’t. It will lead to being done,” he said. We tracked the rise in voter challenge.
The voter challenge is that activists who believe in former President Donald Trump’s election lies are also flooding campaign offices across the country with public records demands and threats of lawsuits, with more jobs to come as November prepares. This happens when stacking
“It takes time for us because we have to talk to county attorneys about what the appropriate response will be,” said Rachel Rodriguez, election supervisor for Dane County, Wisconsin, which includes the state capital Madison.
About two weeks ago she received a duplicate email requesting records.
Ossego County, N.Y., Democratic election commissioner Michael Henrici accuses him of failing to respond after receiving a one-line email last week warning him of an unspecified “election integrity” lawsuit. Received a follow-up.
“They don’t have any specific complaints,” says Henrici. “They get form letters from someone’s podcast, sometimes filling in the blanks.”
Multiple investigations and reviews, including one by Trump’s own Justice Department, found no gross fraud in the 2020 presidential election, and courts have dismissed dozens of lawsuits filed by Trump and his allies. But Trump continues to claim he fell prey to re-election because of rampant fraud. This has led to a large number of activists turning into do-it-yourself election detectives across the country, challenging local voting authorities everywhere.
In Lynn County, Iowa, which includes the city of Cedar Rapids, Miller and auditors who hold elections in 98 other counties in the state said they were inundated with both record requests and voter challenges.
“The whole barrage came in two weeks,” Miller said, following Frank’s tour of using mathematical predictions to claim a gigantic conspiracy to steal the election from Trump. ”
Election offices regularly check voter rolls to exclude those who have moved or died. Federal law limits how quickly voters can be dropped, and conservative activists have long complained that election officials aren’t moving fast enough to clean their lists. I got
A recent problem stems from activists comparing postal address changes and other databases to voter rolls. Election officials say this is redundant as they have already taken the same steps.
Election conspiracy theorists go door-to-door in 2020 for evidence that votes were misplaced, often in very minority neighborhoods, and can cause problems.
Texas’s most democratic Harris County, which includes Houston, received nearly 5,000 negative votes from conservative groups who went door-to-door at voters’ addresses. The elections office has dismissed the issues it had to legally review before the election, saying it will complete the rest after Nov. 8.
Activists in Gwinnett County, an increasingly democratic suburb of Atlanta, spent 10 months comparing address changes and other databases to the county’s voter rolls. Did. About 15,000 were complaints that a particular voter improperly received his 2020 vote-by-mail ballot, according to them. Another 22,000 he said were complaints to voters who claimed they were not at their registered addresses.
There are so many challenges that election officials can’t even count them all yet. However, Gwinnett’s election supervisor, Zach Manifold, said in all mail-in ballot complaints sampled by the office, voters properly received their mailed-in ballots.
However, if any of the no-address voters attempt to vote in November, the county board of elections will have to decide whether to validate the ballot. Under Georgia law, he has only six days to make a decision because the total vote count must be proven by the Monday after Election Day.
Manifold estimates it will take a month for his office to record and research the issues before mail-in ballots are sent for the November election.
Many of the larger counties facing voter count challenges are where President Joe Biden defeated Trump in 2020, including Gwinnett and Harris. But those behind the effort dispute the idea that they are targeting Democratic-leaning counties, saying they work for all voters. In Nassau County, Trump won with over 72% of the vote.
Conservative activist Garland Favorito is working with those who support Trump’s election lies to help challenge voters in Georgia.
Favorito said other Georgia counties are experiencing more challenges.
Under a law passed last year by the Republican-controlled Congress, there is no limit to the number of voter challenges that can be filed in Georgia. Morales Doyle of the Brennan Center said most states implicitly limit the challenge. They require complainants to have certain personal information about the voters they target and set penalties for frivolous complaints.
Florida is an example. That voter challenge law only allows her to file a challenge 30 days before the election, and election officials must contact each challenged voter before Election Day. Submitting an “unsubstantiated” challenge is a misdemeanor. But voter protests nearly derailed last month’s Florida primary in Nassau County, a predominantly Republican county in the state’s northeast.
Two women from the County Liberty Citizens Group submitted nearly 2,000 challenges at county elections offices six days before the August 23 primary election.
Luckily for the office, the challenge was submitted in the wrong format. Election supervisor Janet Adkins told activists that she would consider them after the primary anyway.
“It’s a very serious thing to disenfranchise people,” Adkins said.
Holly Reimer of Concord, New Hampshire contributed to this report.
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