Senate Democrats are taking aim at New Hampshire’s participation in the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program, pressing for the state to pull out of a system they say is deeply flawed. At a Senate election law committee hearing Tuesday on a withdrawal bill, Democrats and voting advocacy groups argued that the program – in which about 30 states share voter information to prevent double-voting across state lines – is inaccurate and insecure. First initiated by the Kansas secretary of state in 2005, Crosscheck requires participating states to send voter registration data to the Kansas office, which then collates the names in a database. Any records sent to the office that match the first name, last name and birthday of a registered voter in another state are then sent back to both states, allowing them to examine the records and determine whether the voter is still a resident there.
The system is meant to prevent cases of individuals driving to vote in two different states on Election Day. But it’s come under heavy criticism from academics and voting rights advocates; statistical analyses have suggested the limited data inputs – name and birthday – are too broad and sweep up many people coincidentally born on the same day. A joint study by Stanford, Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania last year found that the program produces 200 false matches for every one accurate double-vote.
New Hampshire has participated in the program since early 2016. The bill, Senate Bill 439, would withdraw the state from the program and revoke the secretary of state’s authority to share voter information with other states. The move would follow Massachusetts, whose secretary of state reportedly withdrew from the program in March.