Voter Integrity Project of NC – 919-332-4129 – VoterIntegrityProject.com
For Release August 7, 2012
(Raleigh, NC)— Voter Integrity Project of NC (VIP-NC) offered high praise today for the Alamance County Board of Elections, which removed over one hundred deceased citizens from the voter rolls after receiving formal challenges from the group on July 23rd. The comments came moments before Tuesday’s preliminary hearing in Graham over the status of the remaining challenges.
“We were delighted to learn late last Friday that at least 107 of the 123 deceased voters are no longer on the voter rolls,” said Mike Kelley, the local resident responsible for the challenges. “This means 107 people can never fall prey to an identity thief at the ballot box…107 valid votes no longer potentially nullified by fraud.”
Kelley’s action is part of a coordinated statewide effort by Voter Integrity Project of NC to clean the voter rolls in accordance with state and federal laws that order the county boards of election to periodically review the rolls and to remove any deceased voters.
“We just touched the tip of the iceberg with our challenges,” he said,” but it’s satisfying to see their uncontested removal of more than 90 percent of the deceased voters that we discovered several weeks ago.”
In late July, the VIP group challenged Wake County to remove 386 deceased voters, and likewise Halifax County to remove 77 deceased from their rolls.
“People from all across the state are worried about stories of dead people magically voting in Chicago,” said Jay DeLancy, VIP Executive Director, “so volunteers have joined us to encourage election officials to clean up our voter rolls and prevent the potential for that kind of corruption in North Carolina.”
Other citizen groups have relied on obituaries to highlight the potential flaws in North Carolina election laws, but VIP-NC matched the voter rolls against the same official death records provided by the NC Department of Health and Human Services monthly to the State Board of Elections to arrive at their conclusions.
“North Carolina election law mandates a monthly process for election officials to remove the dead people from the rolls,” DeLancy said, “but one of the big loopholes in our fraud-friendly election laws is that nobody is held accountable if it doesn’t get done.”
NC General Statute 163-82.14 (b) requires the state election officials to “distribute every month to each county board of elections the names on that list of deceased persons who were residents of that county,” and each county is required to remove “any person the list shows to be dead.” Section 8 of the 1993 Help America Vote Act also requires this process on a regular basis.
Without naming any counties they are researching, VIP-NC says Alamance County’s voter rolls are not the exception. The group is finding a pattern all across the state of voter rolls with large numbers of deceased citizens listed.
“Our research suggests that this system is broken,” said DeLancy, “so over the next few weeks, we will give many citizens of North Carolina a look at how this simple task is being managed by election officials in their own counties.”
Voter Integrity Project was instrumental in hosting a May 2011 rally in support of the voter photo ID bill that was approved by both houses, but failed to attract the five Democratic legislators necessary for an override.
“The sad part about this entire effort is that none of it would have been necessary if Governor Perdue hadn’t blocked the photo-voter ID bill,” DeLancy said. “Unless she calls the General Assembly back into emergency session, she will go down in North Carolina history as the last Governor who had a clear shot at preventing massive election fraud in North Carolina, but instead bowed down to political pressure.”
VIP-NC is a non-partisan, volunteer organization that works for “free and fair elections” by training volunteers to research the voter rolls in order to remove fictitious or other illegally registered voters, and to monitor elections at precincts across the state in order to ensure that no voters are disenfranchised.