Illegally Registered Voters in Georgia on My Mind

By Dan Cadman on October 25, 2018

I recently wrote about about ignorance and ineptitude at California's Department of Motor Vehicles, which, in its zeal to provide voter registration services in addition to driver's licenses, was routinely and erroneously registering aliens to vote.

This is the consequence of an ill-drafted, but enacted, piece of legislation called the "motor-voter law" or, more accurately, the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) The ostensible purpose of the law was to aid in ensuring that all eligible voters are enfranchised and registered; in fact, though, the law lends itself to all kinds of abuse.

There are three prime reasons for this:

First, driver's license examiners and clerks aren't really adequately prepared to make judgments about who is a citizen and who is an alien, and therefore ineligible to register to vote.

Second, once registered, most state elector's offices do an incredibly poor job of policing the rolls to scrub them of ineligible individuals who should never have been registered in the first place.

Third in the trifecta of ineptitude is what actually happens at polling places, where well-meaning but equally unversed volunteers working under the supervision of county officials are inclined not to ask questions in the first place, and inevitably lean in favor of permitting an individual to cast his or her ballot, no questions asked.

The Washington Times published an article last week that illustrates the kind of abuse of motor-voter that I'm talking about. It cited an incident in which "The Texas Democratic Party asked non-citizens to register to vote, sending out applications to immigrants with the box citizenship already checked 'Yes,' according to new complaints filed Thursday asking prosecutors to see what laws may have been broken."

On October 23, Hans von Spakovsky, who writes regularly on the issue of voter registration and fraud, wrote a piece for National Review with Ashley Vaughan, in which they cite the Times article, and also discuss what appear to be serious irregularities in Georgia's application of the motor-voter law.

The problem in Georgia stems from its decision to issue so-called "limited-term" driver's licenses to aliens in the United States under color of law. This might be nonimmigrants lawfully in status, but also includes illegal aliens covered by the DACA program, aliens in the United States in Temporary Protected Status (even as many of those TPS grants are expiring), and even aliens who are under orders of removal but cannot in fact be deported, such as when their home country refuses to issue travel documents to take them back.

Georgia describes it this way: "The LIMITED-TERM cards should be accepted for activities, such as banking, car rental and shopping, which require a DL or ID just like other Georgia cards." And therein lies the confusion.

An astute reader who resides in Georgia recently went to the polls, which are open for early voting. Aware of the potential issue with these "limited-term" licenses, he asked — not once, but several times — whether poll workers accepted such licenses from individuals intending to vote. The answer was uniformly "yes." He was so dismayed that he wrote about the experience.

It's clear from his blog post that state legislators are aware of the pitfalls and potential problems — and that they've chosen to stick their heads in the sand rather than take effective action to avoid compromising the integrity of Georgia's electoral rolls.

How ironic it is that, even as Americans look on with alarm at media accounts of election meddling by Russian, Chinese, Iranian, North Korean, and other adversaries, here at home our political leaders don't seem to care.