REPORT: Virginia Blocked ‘Non-Citizens, Deceased, Felons’ From ERIC’s ‘Eligible But Unregistered’ Voter Outreach

ERIC Claimed at Least 168K Deceased, Relocated, Ineligible People as ‘Eligible’ for Taxpayer-Funded Outreach in Virginia

(Richmond, VA) – March 7, 2024: The Virginia Legislature advanced a bill to Governor Glenn Youngkin’s desk requiring the Commonwealth’s re-entry into the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). ERIC is an interstate collection of states designed to collaborate on voter roll list maintenance.

ERIC requires states to submit their voter roll and driver’s license customer data to ERIC for comparison. ERIC’s goal is to find a licensed driver who is not registered to vote so they may be offered registration. ERIC would consider that person Eligible But Unregistered or “EBU.” States are then required to mail postcards that explain how to register to vote.

After ERIC provided names and addresses to Virginia, the commonwealth used its existing voter registration list maintenance systems to ensure that deceased individuals, convicted felons, aliens, or those who moved from Virginia did not receive voter registration instructions.

Virginia found 168,000 potential registrants in ERIC’s data who were ineligible to vote because they were deceased or had moved away.

Virginia’s system to filter out foreign nationals, deceased residents, and other ineligible individuals from voter registration postcards not only saved taxpayer dollars, but also stopped ineligible individuals from receiving voter registration instructions.

Unfortunately, not all states that are a part of ERIC have built a system to filter out individuals who are not eligible to vote.

For instance, Colorado made national news after admitting a “data analytic error” resulted in more than 31,000 foreign nationals receiving postcards with instructions on how to register to vote. The ERIC Eligible But Unregistered program was the cause.

States should work collaboratively to maintain voter rolls and should reach for every available tool,” said PILF President J. Christian Adams. “ERIC must be receptive to state solutions that improve list maintenance. States that are a part of ERIC should enact safeguards to ensure they are not sending voter registration postcards to aliens, deceased, felons, and other people ineligible to vote.”

Through federal litigation in multiple states, PILF has broken down ERIC’s wall of secrecy. As part of ERIC’s membership agreement, states are not allowed to share certain ERIC data reports with the public. This secrecy violates the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA), which gives the public a right to inspect voter rolls and voter list maintenance documents. PILF won access to these ERIC reports in Alaska and the District of Columbia.

You can read the full report here.

Public Interest Legal Foundation
 (PILF) is the nation’s only public interest law firm dedicated wholly 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. PILF has brought lawsuits and won victories in Texas, Mississippi, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and across the United States.


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