PHOENIX – Some North Carolina politicians and voting integrity activists have been among the most vocal in the country warning of the dangers of voter fraud. The problem, they say, demands vigilance in keeping voting registration lists accurate and current.
A News 21 search of North Carolina’s current removal list turned up some voters with famous names.
In the last federal election, state officials removed nearly 15 million names from voter registration lists nationally. North Carolina purged about 670,000 names.
Voting rights researchers say voter removal efforts and name-matching databases commonly used to ferret out potential double voters disproportionately target people with common names.
North Carolina’s current efforts removed 90 men named Robert E. Lee from the rolls, according to the state’s online search tool. Ignoring the middle initial, the state removed 227 Robert Lees. Similar numbers are still registered and eligible to vote in November.
In one county, a father-son duo of Stonewall Jackson and Stonewall Jackson Jr. were purged. So were two men legally named Ulysses S. Grant, who were registered in different counties.
Even the namesakes of famous Civil War generals are not immune.
Sean Holstege is a News21 Ethics and Excellence Fellow. Follow him on Twitter @SeanHolstege.