Washington, D.C. – Today, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Lawyers’ Committee) issued a letter to Dean C. Logan, County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk of Los Angeles County to express grave concerns and demand an explanation regarding the removal of 118,522 registered voters from the voter rolls for the California primary election on June 5, 2018.
“These kind of errors are untenable and should have no place in our democracy today,” said Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. “We have grave concerns regarding the 118,522 impacted voters, including whether or not their provisional ballot will be counted in the final results of the primary election. In an era of malfeasance, hacking and systematic attempts to suppress the vote, we are not leaving anything to chance. Through today’s action we are working to protect the integrity of future elections and fighting to restore the public’s confidence in the electoral process.”
“The denial of equal opportunity to vote for still unexplained reasons to over 100,000 registered voters in Los Angeles County is the early warning alert that something is seriously amiss when it comes to operation of our election system and the availability of an adequate Plan B,” said Mark Rosenbaum, director of Public Counsel Opportunity Under Law. “The impact on the outcome of our elections is scarcely less consequential whether disenfranchisement comes from indifference or incompetence from within or from Russian hackers.”
The Election Protection voter hotline (866-OUR-VOTE) – led by the Lawyers’ Committee – was taking live calls during the primary election, providing comprehensive support to callers form cost-to-cost reporting issues at the polls. Following up on the calls received from voters whose names were missing from the rolls in LA County, the Lawyers’ Committee contacted the County Clerk of LA County’s office on June 6, 2018, and was informed that the office could not provide any additional information beyond what was in its brief Press Release.
The letter to Dean C. Logan, County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk of Los Angeles County requests the following:
(1) How many of the provisional ballots submitted by voters who were improperly excluded from the rolls were counted; how many were not; and the reasons any of them were not counted?
(2) What process is your office using to ensure that every eligible individual’s provisional ballot is counted?
(3) What affirmative steps are your office taking to reduce the burdens on these voters in getting their provisional ballots counted and learning the status of their ballot?
(4) Have impacted voters been informed about the actions they must take, if any, in order to have their provisional ballots counted?
(5) Have impacted voters been informed that they have been restored to the rolls?
(6) What instructions were provided to poll workers regarding use of provisional ballots prior to Election Day? What instructions were provided to poll workers following disclosure of the exclusion of voters? Provide copies of any written instructions or revised protocols disseminated to voters on Election Day?
(7) Were any news alerts issued on Election Day? If so, where were these placed and in what languages? What other steps were taken to communicate with impacted voters on Election Day?
(8) If counting of provisional ballots remains incomplete, what is your office’s time frame for completing a full count? What number of ballots were counted?
Read the full letter here
About the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law:
The Lawyers’ Committee, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, was formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to involve the private bar in providing legal services to address racial discrimination. Now in its 55th year, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is continuing its quest to “Move America Toward Justice.” The principal mission of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is to secure, through the rule of law, equal justice for all, particularly in the areas of criminal justice, fair housing and community development, economic justice, educational opportunities, and voting rights. For more information, please visit https://lawyerscommittee.org.
About Public Counsel:
Public Counsel is the nation’s largest pro bono law firm with a staff of more than 120 attorneys, social workers, and intake specialists and the support of 5,000 pro bono partners from the nation’s top law firms, leading law schools and major corporations. Public Counsel’s activities are far-ranging and impact a wide spectrum of people who live at or below the poverty level. Our attorneys are national experts on immigration, veterans’ benefits, child welfare, nonprofit law, and school discipline among other areas.