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Please Help us Counteract the Voter Registration Purging that Helped Make George W. Bush President

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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-16-08 09:32 PM
Original message
Please Help us Counteract the Voter Registration Purging that Helped Make George W. Bush President
As voter registration efforts continue across our country over the next few months, those who lead those efforts would do well to keep in mind the critical role of voter purging in our last two presidential elections.

No, I am not in the least discounting the need for aggressive voter registration efforts. Rather, I am suggesting that without efforts to counteract illegal voter purging, much of those efforts could go for naught as they did in 2000 and 2004.

I am currently working with the Election Defense Alliance on a project to prevent a recurrence of the disastrous purges of 2000 and 2004, in 2008.

Evidence on how illegal purging of voters helped George Bush win the Presidential elections of 2000 and 2004 can be found at this post, which I just posted in General Discussion.

The investigations described in the above noted post were undertaken after the respective elections when it was too late to do anything about correcting the illegal voter registration purges or the election results. Nor was the Bush administration Justice Department at all interested in investigating any of these issues. But what if these problems had been discovered prior to the elections?

What we would like to do is identify voter registration figures in selected counties throughout the United States, at various points in time following the 2006 elections. We are interested in identifying the number of registered voters in those counties between December 2006 and the present, and we also want to know how to follow those numbers from now until the 2008 election.

The goal is to be able to identify suspicious decreases in the number of registered voters, which could be indicative of illegal voter purging. Those situations would then be investigated further, in an attempt to ascertain the reasons for the suspicious decreases, and then take corrective action if possible.

The 15 states that appear to be of greatest interest are: Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, Florida, Missouri, Virginia, New Hampshire, Indiana, Montana, and North Dakota. Targeted counties in those states would be perhaps the 3-5 largest counties in the state, or any other county that would appear to be especially susceptible to voter purging.

If you have any information or links that would help us obtain the data that we are looking for in any of the above noted counties and states, please let me know either through this post or by pm.

I will also be cross-posting to the respective state forums and the Election Reform forum.

Thank you.
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-24-08 05:14 AM
Response to Original message
1. I just checked in here. I'll pm you. n/t
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-25-08 05:32 PM
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2. We've got Obama interns here
Of course I live in the largest media market in the northern 2/3s of the state so we have more here than many other counties. These young people are incredibly hard working. They have been registering voters like crazy. They worked the Cherry Festival really hard and have taken many hundreds of voter registrations into the county clerk (who is vice-chair of the local Rethug party and rather snotty with them but has no choice but to accept those registrations).

You can be confident in what's going on in this region! We're rockin'!

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Demeter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-02-08 04:10 PM
Response to Original message
3. Michigan Does Not Purge Its Voting Lists
The only way people are removed is upon certification that the voter is dead or has relocated...that means a death certificate or an affidavit from the individual.
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SharonRB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-03-08 11:04 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. Are you sure about that?
We've heard of names being purged -- word has it that 10,000 in Farmington Hills alone have been removed from the rolls.
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Demeter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-03-08 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. I Doubt that 10,000 People Live in Farmington Hills
Edited on Sun Aug-03-08 04:21 PM by Demeter
This is a direct quote from our election trainer:"We do not purge voting lists in Michigan. The only way names come off are with a certificate of death or an affidavit from the voter of moving."

Yes, Farmington Hills population is approaching 80,000. Farmington next door is just over 10,000...
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SharonRB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-03-08 07:46 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. The rules may say that's the only way names come off the lists
but in practice I've heard otherwise. We can't take our eyes off the prize -- we must be ever vigilant about voter suppression and disenfranchisement.
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-04-08 05:24 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. are incorrect. I wish you weren't.
Read this and weep...what you described is the way it should be, but it's not. Land is a piece of work. It is very unfortunate that Sabaugh did not get elected. With the foreclosure rate in Michigan, it could get very ugly on election day. How many people will remember to update their voter registration info? How many people will not have a permanent address to register? They are using the foreclosure lists to "check up" on voters. Send a "do not forward" mailing. If it gets returned to the SOS, you may be removed from the list. They will not pursue it, or attempt to verify you as a legitimate voter.

Everyone needs to check their voter registration now, and again before October 6.

Use this list for links to check, and pass the info along.
Michigan: /

Links for other states:

Three States Accused of Illegally Purging Voter Lists
By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet
Posted on July 25, 2008, Printed on August 4, 2008 /
Election officials in a handful of states appear to be ignoring the federal law dictating the way registered voters may be purged from voter rolls, civil rights attorneys say.

National voting rights groups have contacted officials in Kansas, Michigan and Louisiana in recent weeks because those states appear to be purging registered voters after election officials found duplicate names and birthdays of people on their voter lists and in out-of-state databases, such as driver's license records.

big snip...

Michigan's Secretive Approach

In Michigan, the issues are more complex. Advancement Project's Heard said there has been an overall lack of "transparency" regarding several aspects of the state's voter purge process. In 2006, he said, Michigan election officials did a statewide mailing to all voters that did not mention the mailing would be used to verify voter registration information. Still, Heard said the returned postcards were used to remove 230,000 registered voters from voter rolls within 90 days of that year's general election, which also violates the NVRA, he said.

Jan BenDor, statewide coordinator for the Michigan Election Defense Alliance, a local voting rights group, said state officials cited an April 2007 letter from the Department of Justice pressuring the state to do more to clean up its voter roll for the statewide mailing and August 2006 purge. Ten states received those letters, which critics said was a political move because the claims of sloppy voter rolls was based on outdated data, notably U.S. Census population estimates.

Since the 2006 purge, Michigan has used driver's license databases from other states to identify another 280,000 names as apparent duplicate voter registrations, Heard said. This month, staffers for Michigan Secretary of State Land, a Republican, canceled a meeting with Heard and Michigan activists to discuss purge issues.

"We have been trying to get a meeting with election officials to talk about the issues and get their explanation," Heard said. "It's hard to say what happened with the 280,000 supposed out-of-state movers, since we can't get the info from the state."

Land's spokeswoman, Chesney, did not respond to requests to comment. However, newspapers in Michigan have quoted Chesney as saying the meeting was canceled when an information session appeared to be a precursor to litigation. Heard said Advancement Project has not ruled out filing a lawsuit.

"We have to evaluate all of our options," he said. "We are hoping the secretary of state's staff will sit down and talk about it."
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