Democrats unveil tool to fight voter purges

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The Democratic National Committee (DNC) on Tuesday unveiled a new tool meant to help local campaigns fight voter roll purges, a phenomenon the party has blamed for statewide election losses in recent years.

A press release from the DNC noted that the tool, which will be available for Democratic candidates and their staff, “makes it easier for organizing teams to quickly contact a universe of purged or inactive voters and take the steps necessary to re-register them or help them protect their voting status.”

“The fight against voter suppression has never been more urgent,” said the head of the DNC’s voter protection project, Reyna Walters-Morgan.

“Whether an individual is facing the prospect of being purged for malicious or mundane reasons, this tool helps leverage Democrats’ organizing and voter protection resources to safeguard the right of every eligible voter to protect their voting status and easily participate in our democratic process,” Walters-Morgan added.

Democrats have fought efforts usually led by GOP officials to purge inactive voters from state voter rolls, and in 2018 the inability to restore voters removed from rolls in Georgia was blamed for the gubernatorial election loss of Stacey Abrams (D), a former state Senate leader. Abrams has since founded a group based on protecting voting rights.

An investigation last year from the Brennan Center for Justice found that more than 30 million voters were purged from voter rolls across the country between 2014-2019.

“This innovative tool brings the work of our data, voter protection and organizing teams together to protect the right of every American to participate in our democracy,” DNC Chairman Tom Perez added in the press release.

“We know Republicans are waging an orchestrated campaign of voter suppression, but Democrats are fighting back and making critical investments like this one in our voter protection infrastructure,” he continued. “Through innovations like this, we’re making sure our organizers are empowered to reach and successfully mobilize the coalition of voters who will defeat Donald Trump and elect Democrats at every level in November.”

In an emailed statement to The Hill, Republican National Committee (RNC) officials contended that Republican campaigns had long had access to such data.

“Unlike the DNC, we have been providing basic data like this to campaigns and state parties free of charge for at least 10 years, and we help facilitate tens of thousands of these registrations every year. Often times we learn that someone has moved or become ineligible even earlier than the state does, and work to re-register them then. It’s a testament to how sophisticated our data operation is,” said the RNC’s communications director, Michael Ahrens.

Updated at 12:55 p.m. with a statement from the Republican National Committee.

Tags 2020 election Democratic National Committee Democratic Party Democratic Party DNC Donald Trump Electoral fraud Georgia Stacey Abrams Tom Perez Voter suppression

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