Voter Purges

Protecting the Voter Rolls

It’s one thing to get citizens onto the voter rolls. But it’s equally important that we make sure eligible voters stay on the rolls.

Under the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), states are tasked with maintaining current and accurate voter registration databases. However, the lack of clear and uniform standards for list maintenance has resulted in inconsistent standards from state to state, and poorly developed “voter purge” programs have often led to the mass disenfranchisement of eligible voters. Frequently, such ill-conceived purge programs have had a disproportionate impact on minority populations.

The removal of voters from the rolls needs to be undertaken with the greatest of care, and in complete compliance with the standards established by federal law, including the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA), which contains a number of procedural protections to protect eligible voters from wrongful removals.

Project Vote closely monitors, investigates, and where necessary brings suits against illegal and discriminatory voter purge activity.

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Legislative Brief: Maintaining Current and Accurate Voter Lists

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Every state is tasked with the duty to maintain current and accurate computerized statewide voter registration rolls, while at the same time ensuring that no eligible voters are wrongfully removed from the rolls. This report discusses some of the challenges inherent in balancing these two goals, and offers recommendations for implementing best practices. Read more

Lawsuit Filed in Virginia over Access to Rejected Voter Applications

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One of the requirements of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) is that state records relating to voter registration and... Read more

A Review of Academic Literature on the Effectiveness of the National Voter Registration Act

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A 2009 review of academic literature on the effectiveness of the National Voter Registration Act. Read more

The National Voter Registration Act: Case Summaries

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This analysis of litigation under the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 covers key issues including: (1) the constitutionality of the NVRA; (2) public agency registration under Section 7; (3) voter list maintenance under Section 8; (4) designation of certain offices as mandatory agencies under Section 7; (5) voter registration process; and (6) restrictions on third-party registration. Read more

New Project Vote Media Memo Assesses GOP’s Record of Voter Caging and Other So-Called “Ballot Security” Measures

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On November 3, 2008, on the eve of an historic defeat for the GOP, the Republican National Committee (RNC) quietly filed a motion to dissolve an existing consent decree that prohibits them from engaging in so-called “ballot-security” measures… Read more

Project Vote Takes Legal Action to Protect 86,000 St. Louis Voters

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On Wednesday Project Vote joined two private attorneys in filing suit against the St. Louis County board of elections, demanding that they take steps to prevent some 86,000 St. Louis residents from being wrongly and illegally prevented from casting a ballot on Election Day. Read more

Mississippi Voters Threatened by Illegal Purge, if New Bill Passes Legislature

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A new bill working its way through the Mississippi State Legislature threatens the hard-won voting rights of elderly, minority, and disabled voters throughout the state. Read more

Model Bill: Voter List Maintenance

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This document provides a template for lawmakers and other interested parties to draft bills on voter list maintenance. Read more

Commonwealth of Kentucky v. State Board of Elections (Kentucky)

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The complaint sought declaratory and injunctive relief for a purge of approximately 8,000 Kentucky voters conducted by the State Board... Read more