Pennsylvania has joined a multi-state alliance that aims to clean up voter rolls by identifying people registered in more than one state and dead people who remain on registration lists. A mobile society makes it “important that election officials use available tools to make sure only legally registered individuals vote,” Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele said in August when Pennsylvania joined. About half of all states, led by Kansas, belong to the coalition, which cross-checks voters’ names. States compile registration lists at the end of each year to check for duplicates.
The program has grown rapidly since beginning in 2005. This year, officials identified more than 5 million questionable registrations in 22 states and discovered some people who voted in multiple states.
Many of the registration problems are innocent, but disorder in the system can invite trouble, officials say.
Election managers say they have a duty to ensure every eligible voter has an opportunity to participate. A commitment to accuracy goes along with that commitment to access, they said.