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NY officials are accused of keeping phantom voters on the lists

A conservative watchdog group has sued elected officials in New York for failing to remove potentially hundreds of thousands of phantom voters from the city’s electoral rolls to prevent fraud.

In court filings filed in federal court in Brooklyn on Wednesday, Judicial Watch said the city’s Election Committee selected just 22 out of 5.5 million voters for a metropolitan area of ​​over 5.5 million voters over a six-year period from 2016 to 2021 removed.

The paltry number of ineligible voters who have been removed from the lists is a clear violation of the National Voter Registration Act, the lawsuit alleges.

“It is inconceivable that these counties could comply with NVRA while doing almost no NVRA removals,” the lawsuit states.

In a few years, the city’s five boroughs — Kings, Queens, New York, Bronx, and Richmond — reported zero moves.

At the same time, the lawsuit alleges that more than 600,000 voting-age citizens are estimated to relocate or relocate from New York City each year.

In comparison, rural Yates County, in upstate New York, with just 14,500 registered voters, made 1,251 relocations over the same six-year period.

A poll worker prepares a ballot
The lawsuit alleges that the NVRA was violated.
Richard Drew/AP

“This is literally an exponentially larger number than the 22 NVRA moves that took place across New York City during the same period,” Judicial Watch said.

One of the plaintiffs’ attorneys, Neal Brickman, told The Post that voter rolls need to be cleaned to ensure accuracy and “prevent voters from voting multiple times and prevent voter fraud.”

“Members [of Judicial Watch] are concerned that failure by the NVRA to maintain voter lists undermines the integrity of the election by increasing the opportunity for unauthorized voters to cast ballots, whether intentionally or inadvertently,” the lawsuit reads.

Under federal law, electoral authorities are required to remove voters from active registration lists if they certify in writing that they have moved out of the territory.

Voters must also be removed from active registration lists if they do not respond to one
official confirmation of address or not going to vote in two federal elections.

But it gets complicated.

Under NVRA and New York law, voters whose registration is inactive can still vote on Election Day if they show up. Inactive voters are still registered voters.

The lawsuit lists both state and city election committee officials as defendants.

People vote at Anning S. Prall Intermediate School in Staten Island
In some years, New York City did not report voter removal.
Ted Shaffrey/AP

Fred Umane, of the city election commissioners listed as a defendant, declined to comment on the lawsuit.

Doug Kellner, co-chair of the state board of elections, said he did not see the lawsuit.

“The rules for removing people from the electoral roll are complicated. I can’t comment on whether the city is following the law,” said Kellner.

The city’s electoral board – whose commissioners are elected by party bosses – has been accused of being a dour patronage mill rather than a professional agency managing the machinery of democracy.

But election officials might be suspicious of deleting voter rolls.

The board admitted to violating electoral laws by illegally erasing 200,000 voters from its lists ahead of the 2016 presidential primary. That year, 20 percent of trained poll workers failed to show up for work on election day.

It has come under fire for other foul-ups.

In November 2018, high humidity on Election Day rendered his new $56 million scanners inoperable.

And during the 2020 presidential primary, the board disqualified 80,000 ballots because officials were unwilling to handle the surge in votes cast by mail due to health concerns about in-person voting caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

That year, the BOE botched key components of its early-election program for the presidential election, including allocating ballot scanners without considering demand, and crammed so many voters into polling stations that it overwhelmed its system, The Post reported.

On primary day, June 28, two New York City polling stations notified voters that they had no Republican ballots for the New York primary.

https://nypost.com/2022/07/06/ny-officials-accused-of-keeping-phantom-voters-on-the-rolls/ NY officials are accused of keeping phantom voters on the lists

JACLYN DIAZ

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