News & Politics

Judicial Watch Claims There Are Over 18,000 Extra Names on Iowa's Voting Rolls [UPDATED]

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On Monday, Judicial Watch reported that eight counties in the state of Iowa have registration rates above 100 percent, adding at least 18,658 extra names to the Iowa voting rolls. The Iowa caucuses are to be held on Monday.

Of course, this phenomenon isn’t limited to just Iowa. According to Judicial Watch’s analysis of government data, “378 counties nationwide that have more voter registrations than citizens living there who are old enough to vote, i.e., counties where registration rates exceed 100%.”

These 378 counties have a combined 2.5 million registrations over the 100% mark. This problem is even bigger considering that the Census Bureau estimated in 2014 that that 64.6 percent of eligible adults were registered to vote in 2014. There are many other counties with suspiciously high registration rates.

“Dirty voting rolls can mean dirty elections and Iowa needs to undertake a serious effort to address its voting rolls,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

In 2018, the Supreme Court ruled that states can purge their voter rolls of dormant and invalid voter registrations, in a ruling that is widely believed will hurt Democrats for the obvious reasons connected to voter fraud.

UPDATE: Lead Stories, a fact-checking organization that partners with Facebook, is disputing Judicial Watch’s findings. According to Lead Stories, based on more recent data than what Judicial Watch used, there are only five, not eight counties where the total number of registered voters exceeds the voting-age population. More specifically, the organization found that there are 9,138 extra names on the voter rolls, not 18,658 as Judicial Watch found.

However, it appears Lead Stories’ main issue with Judicial Watch’s findings is who it included in its “registered voter” numbers. Lead Stories claims that inactive voters should not be included in this figure; only active voters should be looked at.

According to Lead Stories, if inactive voters are taken out of the equation, only one county has a higher number of registered voters than the voter age population. The fact-checker explains that this discrepancy might be due to the fact that there is a significant number of college students in the area who may have registered to vote in that county even if they do not live there full time.

Overall, Lead Stories is arguing that the main issue here is “using Judicial Watch’s methodology as a barometer for nefarious behavior.” In other words, the number of registered voters in the state, despite exceeding population figures, should not be used to suggest voter fraud.