NC rejected 11 voters in 2014 due to citizenship questions

Posted February 10, 2015 9:58 p.m. EST
Updated February 10, 2015 11:35 p.m. EST

State Board of Elections sign

— A statewide dragnet for non-citizens registered as voters yielded 11 individuals who tried to cast ballots during the 2014 General Election but were ultimately rejected, according to a new report compiled by the State Board of Elections in response to a legislative inquiry.

In all, more than 2.9 million people voted during the November election. 

Initially, advocacy groups said they had identified roughly 10,000 people who had registered to vote but held driver's licenses obtained using documents that indicated they were "legally present" in the United States but not citizens. Only citizens may vote. 

Before the fall election, the State Board of Elections narrowed that list list to 1,454 voters in 81 counties whose eligibility to vote was in question. Those voters were placed on a watch list, State Board of Elections Director Kim Strach explained in her memo.

Of those, 89 tried to vote. 

"In some instances, the registrant produced a valid U.S. Passport to poll workers prior to any challenge proceeding," Strach said. "Ultimately, elections officials challenged 24 registrants, 11 of which were sustained. No registrant voted who was flagged as part of the Federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program."

Strach said that her office would continue ongoing audits of the voter rolls and follow up with flagged voters who did not show up to vote. 

"We have prepared and are mailing letters to flagged registrants, requiring documentation demonstrating their citizenship," Strach wrote. "If a voter fails to provide copies of appropriate documentation, or fails to respond within 30 days, our Agency will work with the appropriate county board of election to initiate challenge proceedings."