Montgomery election officials said Monday they will review registration procedures in response to allegations from a conservative watchdog group that the county’s rolls are packed with ineligible voters. Judicial Watch said in a letter earlier this month there was “strong circumstantial evidence” that Montgomery’s lists are filled with names of voters who have died, moved out of state or are non-citizens. It said the charge is supported by data showing more registered voters in the county than there are citizens of voting age (18 and over). … The state board, which oversees county panels, said last week that it will also review practices in response to Judicial Watch. But county election staff and voting rights groups raised questions Monday about the legitimacy of Judicial Watch’s claim.
Records do show that Montgomery’s total registration of 657,548 is higher than its voting-age population of 633,295, a figure that comes from census data. But board staff said there as many as 16,000 active voters who don’t show up in the census. About half are 16-and-17-year olds allowed to register because they will be 18 by the time of the next federal election.
The other half includes county voters overseas, either with the military or the private sector.
The disconnect between registration and voting-age population also reflects the lengthy process required by federal law remove someone from the voter rolls, board staff said. It takes four years to “cancel,” or remove a person from voter lists. That comes only after two sample ballots are returned with no forwarding address and the individual fails to vote in two consecutive federal elections.