In February, county election supervisors got some news from the state motor vehicle agency: A database audit in April 2011 had identified more than 20,000 potential non-U.S. citizens on voter rolls. But the Florida Department of State, which knew of the audit, didn’t begin forwarding a portion of those names to county election supervisors until recently — just six months from the presidential election in November. That yearlong delay has frustrated many election supervisors, who worry database scrubbing could be tainted by accusations of politics this close to an election. Hispanic, Democratic and independent-minded voters are the most likely to be targeted in the review, an analysis by the Miami Herald found.
“The integrity of the voter rolls is paramount,” said Pasco County Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley. “But at the same time, it would have been ideal to address this in 2011, April-ish. … I’ve had several people say to me, ‘This doesn’t look good.’ ” Corley, a Republican, joined his colleagues in Tampa on Tuesday for the annual conference of the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections. One hot topic was the lists of potential non-U.S. citizens.
“Obviously, if it’s going to be this close to an election, you have to question the motivation,” said Polk County Supervisor of Elections Lori Edwards, a Democrat. “On the other hand, we want to do our due diligence to make sure the voter rolls are clean and accurate.”