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Missouri’s statewide inconsistency in checking death notices against absentee ballots means some dead people could still have their votes count on Election Day.
"I’m comfortable with saying that’s a possibility," Terry Jarrett, chief legal counsel for Secretary of State Matt Blunt, said yesterday.
It’s actually likely, said county clerks interviewed yesterday. The clerks are in charge of running elections in jurisdictions large and small.
"We check it against the newspaper obituaries, but I don’t know of any way to be 100 percent sure that every absentee is alive on Election Day," Oregon County Clerk Gary Hensley said from his office in Alton, in southern Missouri. "Many of the absentees do tend to be older or sick folks, and they do pass away. That they are sick, that’s why many vote absentee in the first place."
For six weeks before Election Day, Missouri allows absentee voting for specific reasons, including illness and inability to get to polling places. This year, there has been a surge in requests for absentee ballots, caused in part by efforts to gather votes from senior citizens, the hospitalized and shut-ins.
When one candidate in Tuesday's election studied a list of Ada Township's registered voters, he got a surprise.
"Some of the voters on the list were dead," Township Board member William Wood said.
Wood, who is running for supervisor, said at least 16 people are dead.
Clerk Deborah Ensing-Milhuff said of the 16 names on Wood's list, 11 still are listed as township taxpayers.
She said township officials may not remove people from the voting list until they get confirmation of the death.
"We don't get copies of death certificates unless they are buried in the township cemetery," she said. "Otherwise, we have to wait for notification from the county or the state."
In the past, the clerk's office has held back absentee ballots when the resident died after voting but before Election Day.
Meanwhile, Missouri GOP leaders accuse St. Louis Democrats of gathering flawed, and sometimes fraudulent, new voter-registration applications. In the mayoral primary in 2001, Republicans noted, dead people turned up on city voter rolls, including at least three deceased aldermen.
Lists of Indiana voters that will be used in next week's election include thousands of people registered in two counties and long-dead voters, according to an Indianapolis Star analysis.
In Marion County, at least 50 registered voters who died six years or more ago, and even Gov. Frank O'Bannon, who died just over a year ago, remain on the rolls, according to The Star's review of thousands of voter registration records.
The Star's database analysis also found that nearly 3,500 voters are registered in both Marion and Hamilton counties, and a nearly equal number are registered in both Marion and Johnson counties. In all, more than 11,000 voters are registered both in Marion and in one of the surrounding counties.
While national attention has focused on election problems from hanging chads to faulty electronics, the foundation of voting in Indiana -- registration lists -- is based on information so old and outdated that fraud could be a possibility, election officials say.
The faulty lists also clog the voter-identification system on Election Day and distort turnout percentages because their size is overstated by duplicate and other incorrect entries.
Originally posted by LadyV
Yep.........your right....it's tit for tat in the political field...sad isn't it!
Ion Sancho, a Democrat, noted that Florida law allows political party operatives inside polling stations to stop voters from obtaining a ballot.
They may then only vote "provisionally" after signing an affidavit attesting to their legal voting status.
GHOST VOTERS: An untold number of absentee and early ballots cast before Election Day by people who later die will be counted. States differ on whether they count such votes and what they do to weed them out.
GETTING WORSE: New in-person early voting used by millions in at least 30 states makes it harder to retrieve ballots after a voter's death.
SO WHAT? An average of 455 voting-age people die in Florida every day — nearly as many as the 537 who decided the presidential election in Florida in 2000.
RATTLING CHAINS: Thousands of lawyers from both parties could find the phenomenon of dead voters more than just an Election Day curiosity and challenge the ballots.