California's mandatory (automatic) voter registration system, which launched in April, has been plagued by problems. First, two registration forms were created for each of 77,000 voters due to a "software error." Then, over 23,000 voters had errors placed in their voter registration records due to an "administrative processing error" after a visit to the DMV. Now, 1,500 people have been wrongly registered to vote by the DMV, including at least some non-citizens, due to errors made by employees during data entry:
The Newport Beach resident, who has a green card and is married to a U.S. citizen, was one of some 1,500 people who the California Department of Motor Vehicles said on Monday were wrongly registered to vote between late April and late September. These errors, which included other non-citizens, are in addition to the roughly 23,000 registration mistakes disclosed by the DMV last month.
[Randall] Marquis contacted The Times on Sept. 30 to say that his attempt to get a replacement driver’s license at a DMV field office in late August ended with him being sent a registered voter notice by elections officials. DMV officials, in responding to a request for comment from The Times, then discovered additional errors that were blamed on employees making data entries. . . .
A DMV spokeswoman said a department employee mistakenly changed Marquis’ citizenship information and his eligibility to vote, then correctly updated the information to show he is not a U.S. citizen. But that did not stop the documents from being sent to elections officials, and state records last week identified him as an unaffiliated voter who could cast a ballot in the Nov. 6 election.
The California DMV does issue drivers' licenses to non-citizens who are here illegally, but it claims that illegal aliens' licenses are issued using a different process and that there is no way that an illegal alien could be registered to vote. Of course, the DMV also claimed prior to the roll-out of the new system that non-citizens could not be registered to vote either.
What is even more disturbing is that mail ballots are being sent for the November election:
Elections officials canceled the registrations. And though absentee ballots will begin going out this week, they said the bar code on each individual ballot would ensure that no votes would be tallied on election day.
How many more errors made by the new mandatory voter registration system have yet to be discovered? And have the ones identified actually been corrected? Will people who should receive ballots not receive them due to an error created by the DMV (such as transferring their registration from their home address to their beach house where they have a car registered) or will people who are ineligible to vote receive a ballot? Unfortunately it increasingly looks like the answers to both questions will be yes.
While mandatory voter registration systems purport to create more accurate voter registration rolls, they really create the opportunity for such errors to proliferate.