About 7,500 voters who were purged from Ohio voter registration rolls from 2011-2014 but were then reinstated at the order of a federal judge last year showed up and voted in the 2016 presidential election. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted made that admission today in announcing his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court of a lower court case that threw out the state’s voter registration maintenance process. “While partisan activists have asserted that up to 2 million voters had been wrongfully removed from the voter rolls, data from the 2016 Presidential Election returned only 7,500 ballots cast by those removed after election officials were not able to contact them,” Mr. Husted said in a news release from his office. Mr. Husted said he filed the appeal to justify the state’s ”accurate and up-to-date voter rolls.”
A U.S. District Court judge upheld the state’s voter registration maintenance process but the U.S. 6th District Court of Appeals based in Cincinnati last year struck down Ohio’s process, agreeing that it violates the federal prohibition against removing voters because of a period of inactivity.
As a temporary remedy, the district judge directed the Secretary of State to allow the purged voters to vote provisionally if they still lived in the same county.
Mr. Husted denied that inactivity was the reason for removals, arguing that voters were purged if over a six-year period they failed to vote, failed to respond to a postcard asking them to confirm their address, and went to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles at least once where they were asked if they would allow the BMV to update their voter registration and they said no.