Pennsylvania Urged to Reveal Noncitizen Voters or Face Lawsuit

Published On: December 12th, 2017

(HARRISBURG, PA.) – December 12, 2017: The Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) today submitted testimony before the Pennsylvania Senate State Government Committee regarding the prevalence of noncitizens illegally registered to vote.

PILF President and General Counsel J. Christian Adams warns the Committee that recent failures to disclose records related to noncitizens discovered within the voter registry can invite a lawsuit against the Pennsylvania Department of State.

“I can report to this Committee that we are now experiencing … stonewalling from the State, and if our requests for data are not met, we will sue State election officials in federal court to obtain the information,” the written testimony warns. “This Committee can ask for the same information we have asked for.”

Adams’ testimony details formal attempts by the PILF in October and December to secure inspection or copies of records detailing the full scope of noncitizens within the voter registry, including cases where individuals self-reported or were officially discovered when driver and voter databases were compared. In four attempts, the State of Pennsylvania has remained silent.

The submitted statement notes that records requests made pursuant to the National Voter Registration Act can result in litigation if the jurisdiction in question refuses inspection or copies files of interest to any party. The PILF brought similar suits against locales in Philadelphia and Virginia.

The Public Interest Legal Foundation has built a record case studies uncovering noncitizen voter registration and voting in a growing number of states.

  • In October 2016, PILF found 86 noncitizens registered to vote in Philadelphia. Forty of those voted in at least one election.
  • In May 2017, PILF found 5,556 voters removed by the Commonwealth of Virginia as “non-citizens”. Roughly 33% voted. This research followed an initial October 2016 sampling that yielded 1,000 noncitizens.
  • In September 2017, PILF found 616 noncitizens within New Jersey’s voter registration system.
  • In October 2017, PILF testified before the Pennsylvania House State Government Committee on the matter of noncitizen voting in the state and encouraged an official review to identify more ineligible voters.

A copy of Adams’ statement as submitted to the Senate State Government Committee can be accessed, here. Details for today’s hearing are officially published, here.

Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) is a 501(c)(3) public interest law firm dedicated to election integrity. The Foundation exists to assist states and others to aid the cause of election integrity and fight against lawlessness in American elections. Drawing on numerous experts in the field, PILF seeks to protect the right to vote and preserve the Constitutional framework of American elections.


Public Interest Legal Foundation