More than 300 people on Texas voter list of potential noncitizens are citizens: report

More than 300 people on Texas voter list of potential noncitizens are citizens: report
© Moriah Ratner

More than 300 people on a list of registered voters who may not be citizens distributed by the Texas Secretary of State’s office to a local county are in fact citizens, The Waco Tribune-Herald reported Thursday.

Local elections officials were given a list by the state of 366 registered voters whose citizenship was called into question, according to elections administrator Kathy Van Wolfe.

The McLennan County elections office was informed last Friday that every voter on the list would need to be contacted for proof of citizenship.

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The state called back by Monday and canceled its initial request before anyone from Van Wolfe’s office had even downloaded the list.

“They sent out a list and called us and said it was a mistake,” Van Wolfe said. “All those people have proven citizenship.”

Texas Secretary of State David Whitley said last week that 95,000 registered voters had been flagged who to be reviewed to determine whether they are U.S. citizens. Of that group, 58,000 cast a ballot in at least one election from 1996 to 2018, The Texas Tribune reported.

Republicans and President TrumpDonald John TrumpBusiness school deans call for lifting country-specific visa caps Bolton told ex-Trump aide to call White House lawyers about Ukraine pressure campaign: report Federal prosecutors in New York examining Giuliani business dealings with Ukraine: report MORE over the weekend seized on the initial report, claiming it indicated "rampant" voter fraud in the state and a need for voter ID laws.  

McLennan County, where about 140,000 residents were registered to vote during the November 2018 election, was one of several of Texas’s most populous countries contacted by the secretary of state’s office.

Officials in Harris County, the state’s largest county in the Houston area, have already cleared about 18,000 voters the state flagged as potential noncitizens, the Tribune-Herald reported.

Van Wolfe told the newspaper that verifying voter information occurs daily at various agencies.

“Voter registration is an ongoing process,” she said. “It never stops. It’s year-round.”

A spokesman for the secretary of state told The Hill on Tuesday that the state was giving information to counties as "part of the process of ensuring no eligible voters were impacted by any list maintenance activity."

"This is to ensure that any registered voters who provided proof of citizenship at the time they registered to vote will not be required to provide proof of citizenship as part of the counties’ examination," the spokesman said.