A political organization founded by a Democratic campaign veteran and an affiliated group has sent 800,000 applications for mail-in ballots to potential voters in numerous states, but many contain numerous flaws, which has caused confusion and angered elections officials, the Washington Examiner reported.
The Center for Voter Information, identified by the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics as a liberal advocacy organization, along with the Voter Participation Center have claimed to have sent the applications to “empower” voters, especially the “Rising American Electorate” of single women, minorities and young voters, the Examiner said.
However, many of the mail-in ballot applications contained incorrect information, including the hundreds of thousands sent to potential voters in Virginia this week that had the wrong addresses of election offices on the pre-paid envelope to submit the documents.
Likewise, earlier this summer, thousands of ballot applications were mailed to potential voters in North Carolina, but those were ultimately invalid because part of the forms were already completed, which violated a new law passed in in the state that made them illegal. The Examiner said the groups in previous years sent registration forms to dead people and pets.
“The State and County Boards of Elections encourage third-party groups to consider the overwhelming toll that misleading or confusing mailings and other outreach efforts take on elections resources and the damage they cause to voters’ confidence in elections,” the executive director of North Carolina’s elections board, Karen Brinson Bell, said in a statement posted to Twitter Thursday.
Even when the partially completed applications do not violate the law, some still contain errors, and part of the problem for elections officials is that the mailings appear to come from a government agency, which they say is confusing and misleading.
Fairfax County election officials posted an alert on its Twitter account on Thursday warning voters that they didn’t send the application to them.
The activity comes as some states consider, or already have enacted, due to the novel coronavirus outbreak “universal mail-in” voting in which each voter is mailed a ballot whether or not it was requested.
The Center for Voter Information was founded by Democratic campaign veteran Page Gardner, and when it has spent money on specific election advocacy reportable to the Federal Elections Commission, it has exclusively done it in favor of Democratic candidates and/or against Republicans, the Center for Responsive Politics said.
Among its donors is the political advocacy group founded and funded by Democratic billionaire and failed presidential candidate Tom Steyer, NextGen Climate, which gave $422,000 to the Center for Voter Information in June.