Republican Registration Fraud Highlights Motor-Voter Flaw

(Raleigh, NC)—OCT 2, 2012—Recent Republican problems involving third-party voter registrations, made legal under the 1993 National Voter Registration Act (or “motor-voter” law), continue to erode the electoral process, according to the Voter Integrity Project of NC.

“For years, we have watched as groups like ACORN and NC PIRG have been caught and convicted of registering fictitious voters,” said Jay DeLancy, Director of VIP-NC. “Now that some Republicans have been implicated of similar tactics, can we please get lawmakers to end the practices of these third-party registration organizations?”

The 1993 National Voter Registration Act (often called “motor voter”) allows “private entities” and individuals to stand on sidewalks and parking lots with clipboards as they register any voters who agree to the process, but some Republican Party statewide organizations (including North Carolina) fired a voter registration contractor firm, Strategic Allied Consulting, after they were believed to have turned in illegible, incorrect, and falsified voter registration forms to Florida election officials. 

“We opposed this practice when members of ACORN were caught registering deceased and fictitious persons for the 2008 elections in several states,” said DeLancy, “and we oppose it now. It is time for Congress to reform Motor Voter and put registration back solely into the hands of government agencies and not of political activist groups.”

ACORN was forced to change their name after several high-profile investigations nationwide in 2008. One Bridgeport Connecticut chapter was caught registering a 7-year-old girl, raising concerns about the 8,000 other voters they had registered that year. In 2009, Texas-based “True the Vote,” reviewed 3,800 ACORN registrations and found 25 percent to have problems such as voters registered to non-existent addresses, to vacant lots or to businesses (illegal in Texas) and numerous registrations of deceased and fictitious persons.

“We’re glad the Republican Party took the high road and fired Strategic Allied Consulting,” DeLancy said, “and we expect election officials to investigate those registrations as well as they have the other third-party organizations, because every time a vote is illegally cast, a legitimate voter has been disenfranchised.”