Eight localities in Virginia have more registered voters than voting-age citizens, and in another 15 localities registered voters amount to 95% of the voting-age citizens. Sound funny to you?
SB 1105, authored by state Sen. Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg, and approved by the Senate, would require registrars to look into the data whenever the ratio exceeds 100%.
America is a mobile country. People move between localities and states frequently. While voters typically think to register in a new locality, I doubt it occurs to them to inform registrars in their former localities that they have departed. Speaking for myself, I would expect registrars to exchange information with each other and figure this out for themselves. But it appears that the administrative systems of some registrars offices are ill equipped to keep up with the population flux. If thousands of people across Virginia are improperly registered in multiple localities, that creates the potential for abuse by unscrupulous individuals.
(Some say that fraudulent voting occurs infrequently, so what’s the point in worrying about it. I would respond this way: We don’t know that it occurs infrequently, only that registrars have no systems in place to determine whether illegal voting is occurring, and that in instances where discrepancies have been reported to local authorities, commonwealth attorneys have shown little interest in prosecuting them.)
Speaking as a citizen, I don’t think it’s too much to ask registrars, perhaps with the assistance of the state, to put processes into effect that systematically update voter rolls for deaths, address changes and improper registration by noncitizens.
By the way, another Obenshain bill would require the periodic audit of voting machines, and a third asks registrars to adopt electronic pollbooks that allow them to match voters’ photo IDs to DMV identification records.