The N&O today tackled the issue of same-day registration (SDR), citing research conducted by the Civitas Institute.
The conservative think tank Civitas did its own study of same-day registration during the 2008 election. The group mailed surveys to voters who registered in the traditional method and also through same-day registration. The Raleigh group said it found twice as many undeliverable registrations that were done during early voting.
Francis De Luca of Civitas disagrees with Hall’s explanation of why there are higher rates of unverified registrants. He said the possibility that county elections offices would be late in verifying voters means the process is flawed.
“Why are (the board of elections) six weeks late?” De Luca said in an email. “By being six weeks late they broke the law and the elections board’s own rules. This happens every single election! Nothing is ever done to fix it.”
The research being referenced was actually conducted during the 2012 primary season. You can read all about it here, but below is a short summary:
We chose five counties – Buncombe, Durham, New Hanover, Pasquotank and Wake – to include in our own mailing to check on voters’ status. Our plan was to see how many voters’ letters would be returned as undeliverable….Then a total of 5,019 surveys were mailed to SDR voters. The surveys were mailed on three different dates – two dates before Election Day and the last on May 12, four days after the Primary Election. These mailings produced 365 undeliverable pieces of mail – a rate of 7.3 percent (more than twice the rate of those who registered during the normal registration process).
We believe that these results are valid and reasonable and suggest that statewide thousands of people were improperly registered in 2008 and in every subsequent election since 2008 – enough to swing elections.