Mark Meadows Will Need To Find A Different Vacant Trailer To Call Home After Getting Booted Off NC Voter Rolls

Mark Meadows Will Need To Find A Different Vacant Trailer To Call Home After Getting Booted Off NC Voter Rolls

NC-11 Republican Congressman Mark Meadows, who was elected to represent Western North Carolina in 2010, found out the hard way that there will be no love from the NC State Board of Elections this Valentine’s Day after he was bounced from voter rolls just days before President Trump’s inauguration. North Carolina election officials say that Mark Meadows’s name had been on their inactive list since 2012 and they sent him three warning notices over five years before officially kicking him off their rolls this week without his knowledge or consent.

What Happened?

Mark Meadows was one of the thousands of voters who had their names purged from voter rolls this year. The North Carolina State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement sent out a list last week to county boards of election, notifying them to remove inactive voters from the voter registration lists. They are required by law to do so every year, and in many cases, the people on the list were already deceased or moved out of state. However, many were also on the list for not voting in two consecutive federal elections, and those individuals will be removed if they don’t vote again in 2018.

A total of 641 people across North Carolina have been purged since July 1st.

The Solution

NC voter rolls are updated every year, and when they do so, they remove any voters who have died or moved out of the state. However, because Mark Meadows is a convicted felon, he was ineligible to vote in the first place. Therefore, his name should not have been on the list, to begin with.

This snafu could’ve been avoided had the DOJ simply followed up with Mark Meadows after his release from prison in 2006. Had they done so and seen that he was no longer eligible to vote due to a felony conviction, then there would be no issue for him today.

What About Everyone Else?

Mark Meadows is the second member of North Carolina’s congressional delegation to have his voter registration revoked. The first, Republican Representative George Holding of Raleigh, was removed in July after a judge determined he’d been living outside the district he represents. But  Mark Meadows’s removal sets an even more troubling precedent: He is the first member of Congress to be booted off voter rolls for being homeless.

Critics of electoral purges say they disproportionately affect minority voters and low-income citizens. While purges can remove thousands of people from voter rolls, they’re not very effective at preventing fraud: Only 0.00004 percent of votes in North Carolina were double-votes in 2016, according to the State Board of Elections. If a registered voter is not casting ballots or engaging with their communities, it could be because they’ve moved elsewhere, died, or are struggling with homelessness or other challenges that prevent them from voting regularly.

So What Now?

It is unclear what the reason for being booted off the voter rolls might be, but it could stem from an out-of-date address on his registration form. Still, this doesn’t mean that he can’t vote. There are multiple ways to cast a ballot in North Carolina including absentee voting and early voting. Early voting begins October 17th, so there’s plenty of time to get registered again if necessary.

If you’re looking for an alternative option to the traditional polling place, we recommend checking out your county’s website or calling them directly to find a list of sites where you can vote early.

If you live in North Carolina and are looking for a way to get out of going to vote in person, you might want to try getting an absentee ballot. To do so, you’ll need to provide a specific reason for not being able to make it out to vote on election day.

You’ll also need to submit your application at least two weeks prior, but no more than 30 days before an election takes place. You must follow these guidelines for your request not to be denied. If your request is denied or if you have any questions about registering or voting early, we suggest calling your county board of elections directly.

Who Is Targeting Law Enforcement?

It appears that the voter purge in North Carolina is targeting law enforcement officers. The National Black Police Association (NBPA) has released a statement condemning the move, which they say will have a chilling effect on law enforcement.

NBPA President Terrence Cunningham said he’s been getting calls from officers who have received notices they are being removed from voter rolls. Officers in Wake and Mecklenburg counties are among those who have been removed. This is a deliberate effort to discourage or scare people from voting by claiming falsely that they’re no longer registered,  Mark Meadows said.

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