The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

News

August 20, 2013

Pennsylvania joins 24-state effort to identify duplicate voters

PHILADELPHIA — Pennsylvania has joined a multistate consortium in an effort to track duplicate voters outside state borders.

The state will be the 24th to join the program, the Pennsylvania Department of State announced Tuesday.

The program, called the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program, is based in Kentucky. According to Department of State spokesman Ron Ruman, the program operates county-to-county, and similar checks already happen among counties. The program centralizes voter data from the 24 states and allows for duplication checks between counties in each.

When duplicates are found, county officials will attempt to contact the twice-registered voters to verify whether they've moved, Ruman said. If those voters can't be reached, their registration will become inactive through the next two federal elections. If they show up to vote during that window, Ruman said, they can vote and their registration will be reactivated. If they aren't reached by the end of the time limit, their registration will be canceled.

"It's not going to inhibit or prevent anyone's ability to vote," he said. "It will reduce the chances for someone to vote twice."

Ruman said he expects many of the duplicates will be people who moved and simply forgot to cancel their prior registrations.

"I think most people think it happens automatically," he said.

The program, according to a statement from the Department of State, discovered more than 5 million possible duplicates in 2012.

Pennsylvania will begin providing voter data in 2014.

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