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Flawed Voter Registration Drive Draws Rebuke From Secretary Of State


If you’ve gotten a letter recently that incorrectly says you’re not registered to vote in California, you’re not alone.

California election officials are warning voters about misleading mailers from an advocacy group calling itself the “Voter Participation Center.”

The Secretary of State’s office says it’s received more than 100 calls from confused citizens who received letters that said they weren’t registered to vote – when in fact they are.

It says advocacy groups need to make sure they’re using accurate data to avoid confusing voters and giving election officials more work.

“We don’t see ill motives around this,“ says Sam Mahood with the Secretary of State’s office. “But we do see it as a case of a group that didn’t adequately screen their data to screen out already-registered voters.”

The Voter Participation Center says in a web post that it’s helped more than 65,000 eligible Californians register to vote – in less than a week. The group also says it took more than a dozen steps to improve the accuracy of its mailing lists.

The Secretary of State’s office says voters can easily check their registration status with their county elections office online or by phone.

 Election 2016

Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio