Hundreds of Michigan voters were mistakenly sent “notices of cancellation” last month challenging their voter registration status, according to the Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s office, which is taking steps to correct the error. Bureau of Elections Director Chris Thomas told The Detroit News “a few hundred” voters who left Michigan but later returned were flagged in the Interstate Crosscheck system, which 29 states use to identify fraud and clean up their voter rolls. The bureau alerted local clerks on Friday and is preparing to send letters to affected voters telling them to disregard any notices they received. “Nobody has been canceled, and nobody’s voting rights from 2016 would be affected by this,” Thomas said. “In fact, none of these people could have been affected until January 2019 at the earliest.”
The elections bureau sent to municipal clerks on Jan. 13 an Interstate Crosscheck list that included the names of residents it said had voted in another state as recently as November 2014, as verified by matching several elements from voter records, including the last four digits of their Social Security numbers. “This information constitutes ‘reliable information’ that the voter has moved out of your jurisdiction and you must send ‘Notices of Cancellation’ to the voters on the attached list who are currently registered,” said the state email.
Morgan Cole, a 29-year old who has lived in Michigan since late 2012 after returning from Washington, D.C., received a mid-January notice from the East Lansing city clerk questioning whether she still lived at her current address. “If this reply card is not returned and you do not vote by the second November general election following this notice, your voter registration will be canceled,” it read.
Cole said she almost missed the notice because “it looked like junk mail.” But after reading it, she was alarmed because she has been registered in East Lansing for more than two years and has regularly voted there, she said. Her husband, who moved with her to Lansing and then East Lansing in August 2013, did not receive the same notice.
Full Article: State error prompts voter cancellation notices.