The letter below was sent to Rock Island County Clerk yesterday.
As part of our continuing research, we are looking at all training procedures to assure they are legally compliant with state and federal laws. As the letter below indicates, we are questioning Rock Island about voter registrations and new voters.
As you read below the fold, you will get the full details.
September 25, 2012
Rock Island County Clerk
Rock Island County Office Building
First Floor - 1504 Third Avenue,
Rock Island IL, 61201-8624
Dear Ms. Kinney,
I am writing for clarification on the procedures your office has established to comply with the provisions of the Help America Vote Act for certain voters who register using a form authorized under the National Voter Registration Act. Here is the relevant portion of HAVA.
(b) Requirements for voters who register by mail
(1) In general Notwithstanding section 6(c) of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (42 U.S.C. 1973-4(c)) and subject to paragraph (3), a State shall, in a uniform and nondiscriminatory manner, require an individual to meet the requirements of paragraph (2) if-
(A) the individual registered to vote in a jurisdiction by mail; and
(B)(i) the individual has not previously voted in an election for Federal office in the State; or
(ii) the individual has not previously voted in such an election in the jurisdiction and the jurisdiction is located in a State that does not have a computerized list that complies with the requirements of subsection (a) of this section.
(A) In general
An individual meets the requirements of this paragraph if the individual-
(i) in the case of an individual who votes in person-
(I) presents to the appropriate State or local election official a current and valid photo identification; or
(II) presents to the appropriate State or local election official a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter; or
(ii) in the case of an individual who votes by mail, submits with the ballot-
(I) a copy of a current and valid photo identification; or
(II) a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter.
In examining the Rock Island County Election Judge manual posted on line, there is no mention of this provision. There is no indication that these voters are flagged in the electronic poll books. There is no indication that the judges are to request ID from them. There is no list of acceptable ID to meet the requirements of this provision of the law.
This provision was inserted by Congress as an important measure to prevent voter fraud. It is not optional and it is our intention to ensure that the statute is being fully complied with in Rock Island County. To that end, we ask the following questions and request your prompt response by no later than the close of business on September 28.
1. Does the Rock Island County voter registration system track those voters who are first time voters using the NVRA form?
2. How many voters are flagged in the Rock Island County voter registration system as being voters covered under this provision of HAVA?
3. Does Rock Island County conduct any other data matching activities or other actions that would reduce or eliminate that number? What are those actions?
4. When judges find the name of a voter on the electronic poll book who is covered under this provision, how is the requirement that they show ID shown and presented to the judges in the system?
5. Are election judges trained to ask voters covered under this provision for identification?
6. What are the acceptable forms of identification?
7. Is a list of the acceptable identification provided to judges?
8. What voter registration system do you use?
We reserve the right to make further requests based on your response, but with the knowledge we have now we are requesting certain changes to your procedures.
1. Amend the Election Judge manual to instruct judges to request ID of those voters who are covered under the above cited provision of HAVA.
2. Provide to election judges the list of acceptable ID as laid out in Illinois law.
It should be noted that these provisions are not just to be carried out on Election Day but also during the absentee and early voting periods.
Of course, time is of the essence. I can be reached by phone at ###-###-#### or by email at ######@DefendtheVote.com. We look forward to your quick response so that we can resolve this matter for the voters of Rock Island County
Director of Defend the Vote
Empowering Citizens to Protect Elections