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Republicans scrutinize voting rolls and ramp up for mass challenges ahead of election

Matt Vasilogambros, on

Published in News & Features

A scenario similar to 2022’s mass challenges may repeat itself this year.

Last month, the Republican-led Georgia legislature passed a bill that would more clearly define existing law by setting standards for probable cause to challenge voters and for how much evidence is needed for a successful challenge. It also would cut off registration removals within 45 days of an election.

Some Democrats worried the change would lead to a rush of challenges, hurting voters. But Republican state Sen. Max Burns, one of the sponsors of the bill, said during a March committee hearing that the legislation may lead to fewer challenges.

“I think we need to clean up our voter rolls, so that people have confidence that those who are on the voter rolls are legitimate,” Burns said.

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, who also is Georgia’s former secretary of state, has until early May to sign the legislation. His office told Stateline there will be a thorough review process.

Last month, Indiana Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb signed into law a bill that makes it easier to remove voters from the rolls by requiring state officials to compare voter registration lists with motor vehicle lists for noncitizens. People who are flagged would have 30 days to prove their citizenship.


The New Hampshire House also passed a bill that would allow voter registration challenges on Election Day. The measure is sitting in a state Senate committee.

To assist with those challenges, several right-wing groups that claim American elections are rigged because of voter fraud are releasing voter list tools that activists can use to scour voter registrations.

A company called EagleAI developed a tool to scan Georgia’s voter registration records. There are similar efforts in Nevada and Michigan, all coordinated through the Election Integrity Network, which is run by former Trump campaign attorney Cleta Mitchell. The network did not respond to an interview request.

“They’re perpetuating these lies that our voter rolls are full of fraudulent voters and bloated,” said Kristin Nabers, Georgia state director for All Voting is Local Action, a voting rights group that has opposed mass challenges in the Peach State. “The burden on election offices is really considerable.”


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