Secretary of State Elaine Walker and Boone County Clerk Kenny Brown will address state legislators Tuesday afternoon on the issues surrounding homeless voter registration. They will speak before the Interim Task Force on Elections, Constitutional Amendments and Intergovernmental Affairs to talk about the concerns raised over a memo last month from the Kentucky Board of Elections on the process for homeless voter registration.
Committee co-chairman Sen. Damon Thayer, R-Georgetown, said he called the meeting with Walker and Brown to help lawmakers decide whether legislation will be necessary to allay concerns. “I want to have a committee hearing about it so we can look at potentially addressing it in the next session,” Thayer said.
The June 30 homeless voter registration memo from Board of Elections Executive Director Sarah Ball Johnson to all county clerks drew the objection of Boone County Clerk Kenny Brown.
Brown said he’s not against homeless people voting, but he objected to the memo’s last line that states, “If the application has homeless, place to place, in my car or has no residential address listed; place the voter in the precinct containing the county clerk’s office.”
The placement of someone in the precinct with the county courthouse regardless of whether they live there or not could lead to voter fraud, Brown said. “It is the statutes, the legislators that make it clear,” Brown said. “In Kentucky, you need to vote in the proper precinct.”
He said someone can put their address as a park bench, a homeless shelter or draw a map on the registration form so long as they have an identifiable location. Brown said he hopes the secretary of state can clear the issue up at Tuesday’s meeting.