Bureau among Illinois counties Judicial Watch claims have voter roll irregularities
Kyle Thomas, director of Illinois' Division of Voting and Registration Systems, is defending Bureau County from voting roll irregularities a government watchdog group warns can lead to “dirty elections.”
“We don’t know why they’re on the list or where the information that resulted in them being named came from,” Thomas told the Illinois Valley Times. Bureau is one of 24 local counties to recently receive notice-of-violation letters threatening legal action based on the county reporting more registered voters than the number of voting aged residents that reside there.
“By every measure we have, the county is well within the guideline,” Thomas said.
The warning comes courtesy of Judicial Watch, a Washington, D.C.-based transparency organization that says it bases its tabulations on data from the U.S. Census Bureau and other government agencies.
“It could be they may be comparing active and inactive numbers, and we only compare active numbers,” Thomas said of the discrepancy.
Other local counties receiving the same notice were Alexander, Cass, Clark, Crawford, DuPage, Franklin, Grundy, Hardin, Henderson, Jefferson, Jersey, Massac, McHenry, Mercer, Monroe, Pulaski, Rock Island, Sangamon, Scott, Union, Wabash, Washington and White.
Of those 24 counties, Thomas said the only ones Illinois Voting System numbers indicate may actually be off target are Monroe and Massac.
“We’ve sent a formal response to Judicial Watch but haven’t heard anything back,” he said. “We continue to monitor all our counties, and anytime there is an issue we make them aware.”
Thomas said in years past, Judicial Watch has sent out violation-notice mailers accusing other counties of similar discrepancies but has never followed up to responses sent by his office.
Jurisdictions whose numbers are found to be off are required to do an immediate purge of their voting rolls. Thomas said that process is expected to take place in both Monroe and Massac over the next several months.
Counties in 10 other states received notice-of-violation letters from Judicial Watch, including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina and Tennessee.