Tue. Apr 23rd, 2024

The Republican National Committee sues Michigan over the state’s voter rolls

By 37ci3 Mar14,2024

The Republican National Committee sued Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, a Democrat, on Wednesday, seeking to force election officials to reduce the state’s voter rolls.

The claimfiled in federal court, alleging that Michigan violated the National Voter Registration Act’s requirement to keep clean and accurate voter registration rolls.

This move comes a few days after Trump’s allies effectively took over The leadership of the RNC ahead of the 2024 election.

“At least 53 Michigan counties have more active registered voters than adult citizens over the age of 18. These numbers are impossibly high,” the lawsuit states. “An additional 23 states have active voter registration rates of more than 90 percent of adult citizens age 18 and older. This number far exceeded the national and statewide voter registration rates in recent elections.”

America’s voter registration system is designed for registration, not deletion. Since many voters do not remove themselves from the system when they move, the lists often include outdated registration.

While federal law requires clerks to take steps to keep rolls up-to-date, it also protects voters from excessive purges by requiring clerks to wait years to simply remove a voter who has stopped voting.

There is no evidence that bloated voter rolls lead to voter fraud, despite Republicans increasingly seizing the ballots as the centerpiece of electoral activism.

Benson told NBC News that election officials in the state “have done more in the last five years to remove dead voters and ineligible citizens from our ballots and ensure they are accurate than they have done in the previous two decades.”

According to him, more than 700,000 voters have been removed from the voter lists since he took office, and half a million more voters will be removed if they do not vote in this year’s general elections.

“Let’s call it what it is: a PR campaign masquerading as a baseless lawsuit full of baseless accusations to undermine people’s confidence in the security of our elections. Shame on anyone who abuses the legal process to cast doubt on our democracy,” Benson added.

Since the 2020 election, some Republican activists have taken it personally challenging the right of thousands of voters to choose and develop a computer program they believe it will help them spot fraud.

In recent years, conservative activists have also seized on the prominent voter roll maintenance program known as ERIC (Electronic Enrollment Information Center), a bipartisan, intergovernmental partnership that helps states share information to keep voter rolls up-to-date. After conspiracy theories about ERIC developed, nine GOP-led states abandoned the program, taking their information with them and weakening the coalition’s effectiveness.

The RNC suit in Michigan, a key battleground state, suggests voter rolls could become a more central part of the GOP’s election law strategy.

The filing was reported the same day by NBC News two election lawyers stated that Charlie Spies and Christina Bobb joined the RNC.

Bobb has been a prominent defender of the GOP’s baseless claims that the 2020 election was stolen. He will serve as general counsel for election integrity, while Spies, a longtime GOP lawyer, will serve as general counsel.

Speaking to conservative activists in 2021, Spies disputed election conspiracy theories and urged supporters to adopt electoral changes that would make the system more palatable to Republicans.

“The deal is no early voting,” he said. “We have to use it and telling people not to vote early is cutting off your nose to spite your face. It doesn’t work.”

“We’re changing the system, making us super confident in it,” he continued. “Then encourage people to vote using the laws we have.”

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By 37ci3

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