VRF is dedicated to transparency in our elections process. Voter rolls are where the elections process begins, when one registers to vote, and where it ends, when a vote credit is entered into the voter registration record for a voter who has cast a ballot. It is essential that the voter rolls be maintained to properly add the newly registered and to properly remove registrants who are no longer eligible.
In 1992, Congress passed the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). This act both enabled voter registration through motor vehicle and social services offices and memorialized that it is the public who must perform oversight of the proper maintenance of the voter rolls:
In our Constitutional Republic, the people self-govern. The people themselves are the government. As such, Congress tasked the public with oversight of voter roll maintenance when it passed the NVRA:
(i) Public disclosure of voter registration activities
(1) Each State shall maintain for at least 2 years and shall make available for public inspection and, where available, photocopying at a reasonable cost, all records concerning the implementation of programs and activities conducted for the purpose of ensuring the accuracy and currency of official lists of eligible voters, except to the extent that such records relate to a declination to register to vote or to the identity of a voter registration agency through which any particular voter is registered.
(2) The records maintained pursuant to paragraph (1) shall include lists of the names and addresses of all persons to whom notices described in subsection (d)(2) are sent, and information concerning whether or not each such person has responded to the notice as of the date that inspection of the records is made.
What then does it mean in 2022 for the public to have access to perform oversight of voter rolls and ensure the “accuracy and currency of official lists of eligible voters?”
Can the public afford the exorbitant fees some states charge for a copy of the voter roll (VA – $20,000; WI – $12,500; AL – $36,000)?
If they can manage to find the money needed to purchase, can members of the public open the massive data file containing the voter roll?
Can the public photocopy voter roll lists in counties with millions of registrants?
What can a member of the public do to ensure, “the accuracy and currency of official lists of eligible voters’” when there are barriers like these to acquiring the voter rolls in an understandable form?
That is why our founder Doug Truax created the Voter Reference Foundation.
We are here on behalf of the public, to empower them to conduct the oversight that NVRA envisioned when it was passed.
We are acquiring the voter rolls and making them accessible to the public in an understandable form so that the American people can truly exercise their duties of oversight, as part of their self-governance, to ensure the “accuracy and currency of official lists of eligible voters.”
Where states attempt to prevent the Foundation from providing these public records to the people, Voter Reference Foundation will litigate to ensure the transparency that is so desperately needed to restore confidence in our elections process.
Elections begin and end with the voter rolls. Voter confidence begins and ends with transparency.
The Voter Reference Foundation has just begun. We have 30 states and the District of Columbia live on VoteRef.com. Let the people self-govern. Let the people see the voter rolls. Let freedom ring.