Kim Westbrook Strach, executive director of the North Carolina State Board of Elections, released startling figures to North Carolina’s Joint Legislative Elections Oversight Committee. The statistics were compiled by comparing North Carolina voter registration data and voter history with similar data from other states. This data was collected via the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program.
35,750 voters who voted in the 2012 general election in North Carolina had exact matches on first name, last name and date of birth with voters who voted in at least one other participating state in the 2012 general election.
Where all or part of Social Security Numbers were also available 765 voters who met the criteria above also had exact matches on the last four digits of their Social Security Numbers.
The North Carolina State Board of Elections is investigating. In an interview with The New American, a spokesman explained they were aware that not all the above cases are necessarily election fraud. Certainly, at least a few of these voter registrations are for people with common names and coincidentally were born on the same day. Another non-fraud cause could be clerical errors by election workers accidentally marking the wrong person as having voted.
The New American asked if the suspected multiple votes were via early voting, absentee ballots, or voting in person on election day. That information is not available yet, but will hopefully be gathered as part of the investigation that is underway.
If a suspected case of duplicate voting involves in-person voting on election day and the places are a great distance away from each other, it could be an indication that someone is voting using someone else’s name, possibly without that person’s knowledge. In electoral fraud circles, these people are known as repeaters because they vote repeatedly in an election.
If any of these suspected duplicate votes are via absentee ballots and the mailing address is close to another related address, such as someone voting from his home in one state and voting absentee in another state via his work address or a nearby political party headquarters, it could be evidence of fraud.
Even in cases of fraud, it is not necessarily fraud by the person whose name is used. The New American has interviewed numerous people in the past regarding electoral fraud. In one such case, a man reviewed a voter registration list and noticed the name of a friend who had moved to a different town a number of years prior, yet the records indicated he was voting regularly. When the man who moved was contacted by his friend, he had no idea his old voter registration had not been deleted or that someone had been voting using his name for years.
Some Duplicate Registrations Were Not Related to Multiple Votes
The interstate cross check also found duplicate voter registrations that were not associated with double voting, at least not for now, but they have the potential to be used for fraud in the future. in North Carolina, 155,692 registered voters had exact matches on first name, last name, date of birth and last four digits of their Social Security Numbers and the latest voter registration activity was not in North Carolina. The vast majority of these duplicate voter registrations can be attributed to people who have moved from North Carolina, and the old registration records haven’t been deleted yet. These are usually fixed by a simple voter registration clean-up.
The Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program
The Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program, also known by the nickname The Kansas Project, was initiated in Kansas in 2005 under Kansas Secretary of State Ron Thornburgh when Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri agreed to share voter registration data. The first interstate crosscheck was in 2006. When current Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach assumed office in 2011, the number of states participating had grown to 14. It is now 28 states.
How Thorough Will the Investigations Be?
Thorough investigations of electoral fraud have toppled corrupt politicians before. William “Boss” Tweed of Tammany Hall infamy was brought down within a few years after the U.S. Congress investigated the electoral frauds in New York City in the 1868 presidential election. The Tammany Hall fraudsters were kept out of office for quite few years after that because of two anti-fraud measures in the election laws. 1) All voter registrations had to be in by 30 days before an election. That allowed sufficient time for the voter registration lists to be checked. 2) The New York City Police Department canvassed the entire city verifying every voter registration during that 30-day period.
It is not necessary that the vetting of voter registrations be done by law-enforcement agencies prior to elections. Any government agency will do. As long as the process is open and concerned citizens have access to voter registration information to ensure the vetting is done right, election fraud based on fraudulent voter registrations can be minimized.
Those who object to investigating these potential frauds because they don’t believe the frauds exist would do well to encourage such investigations. If the fraud truly doesn’t exist, a thorough investigation will prove them right.