Nearly 20 Percent of Rhode Island’s Voter Rolls Are ‘Inaccurate’

    A voter casts their ballot at a polling station in the Summit Christian Fellowship in Big Bear, California, November 8, 2016. / AFP / Bill Wechter (Photo credit should read BILL WECHTER/AFP/Getty Images)

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    Rhode Island voter rolls inaccurately contain 150,000 people that they should not, according to the secretary of state.

    The Providence Journal reportedWednesday that Nellie M. Gorbea, Rhode Island’s secretary of state, has found around 150,000 people who are erroneously on the rolls. “It’s not really fraud. It’s really just inaccuracies,” Gorbea said.

    Gorbea has already removed 65,000 names since 2015, the Journal says. An additional 30,000 names were deemed inactive. Gorbea has spent $60,000 on the effort to clean up the state’s voter rolls.

    Rhose Island had a total of 781,770 registered voters during the 2016 elections, meaning that nearly 20 percent of their voter roll is inaccurate.

    Logan Churchwell, communications director for the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF), a group that litigates to protect election integrity, says that this is a problem that extends beyond Rhode Island.

    “This isn’t only a problem in Rhode Island. The News & Observer reports today how PILF client Voter Integrity Project-NC inked a settlement with Wake County, North Carolina to more frequently review voter rolls each year,” Churchwell said. “One example is the requirement that National Change of Address records will be compared to voter rolls on a quarterly basis, rather than the current bi-annual regimen. Elements of the deal will remain in place until 2023.”

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