Mass. central registry protects against voter fraud
Under the Massachusetts Voter Central Registration Information System, when personal information provided by an applicant for voter registration generates a mismatch with a state record, city and town clerks see the same flag generated at the state level, says Easton Town Clerk Jeremy Gillis.
"Sometimes it appears on our screen even before an applicant leaves the room, and we call him back," he said.
Bridgewater Town Clerk Ronald R. Adams said that "we are so interlocked I can even see ... (an applicant’s) voting record in Sturbridge." Every election official on VCRIS can scrutinize the voting lists of every other town on the system, he said. While “local control is great,” Gillis stresses, “you need to couple it” with access to state data.
Need for access to state data elsewhere?
Federal law requires states to verify personal information submitted to local officials in election registration. In Ohio, about 200,000 registrations failed to match state records, and Ohio Republicans asked for the list, alleging possible voter fraud. Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner has refused to divulge the list, saying the errors are probably clerical. President George W. Bush has asked the Department of Justice to investigate.