Davis Hosts Legislative Listening Session in Springfield About Auto Voter Registration Issues

By Benjamin Cox on February 25, 2020 at 8:39am

13th District Congressman Rodney Davis held a listening session yesterday in Springfield about the state’s issues with electronic automatic voter registration errors. Held at the Sangamon County Complex Davis, Sangamon County Clerk Don Gray, State Representative Tim Butler, Steve Sandvoss Executive Director of the Illinois State Board of Elections and Nathan Maddox of the Illinois Secretary of State’s legal counsel were all on hand to speak about the issue.

Davis organized the forum after problems including reports that more than 500 people who used a computer pad to indicate they were not U.S. citizens had information passed on to election officials and were registered to vote. Some turned out to be citizens, including about half of the 16 of them who voted since 2018. At least 2 people have been removed from voter rolls ahead of the upcoming primary after recent investigations. Since mid 2018, the automatic voter registration system has had more than 700,000 people getting new or updated registrations after going to secretary of state facilities to do business. Information is passed along to the State Board of Elections, which then gives it to local election authorities where the registration occurs.

Butler said during the forum he would like to have a moratorium placed on the program until next year to ensure the program is fixed. Davis said he introduced federal legislation to require voter registration equipment to go through the same testing as vote tabulation machines to help reduce any vulnerability of the voting process. Maddox said that the secretary of state’s office has fixed the problem and is currently working on more fail-safes to make sure things don’t happen again as well as giving an opt-out button during licensing processes.