In the end, a list of 2,261 “duplicate voters” in Chesterfield County boiled down to 468 names eligible for cancellation, Watchdog.org reported Monday.
Registrar Larry Haake came under fire for refusing to purge ineligible voters before the November election.
Haake defended his delay, saying an initial perusal of the state-generated list found at least 17 percent of the voters were, in fact, eligible to cast ballots in the Richmond suburb.
After the election, Haake determined that 1,260 voters were already “inactive,” and “in the process” of canceling their Virginia registrations.
He said 174 voters listed as “duplicates” had more recent Chesterfield registration dates than other state registrations.
“They should not even have been on the list,” Haake said.
The State Board of Elections sent “duplicate voter” lists to all county registrars last summer and directed that they scrub their voter rolls accordingly.
Virginia’s first foray into the interstate cross-check program resulted in some 38,000 voters being removed from poll books around the commonwealth this past fall. A few county purge rates ran as high as 90 percent.
But citing the high inaccuracy rate on the state’s list in Chesterfield, Haake defended his refusal to act before the election – and he blasted his vote-watch critics.
“If those groups are truly interested in protecting voter rights, then they need to become informed … and stop issuing threats,” he said.
“Both groups would have had me cancel the voting rights of hundreds of properly registered voters, many of whom did in fact vote in the November election.”
American Civil Rights Union attorney J. Christian Adams said his organization has sought to review Haake’s findings under the National Voter Registration Act.