Dead Voters ready to vote Tuesday?

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by Russell Kinsaul

KMOV.com

Posted on October 29, 2010 at 6:59 PM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 29 at 11:23 PM

(KMOV) -- Are dead people preparing to vote in Tuesday's election? Records show they've voted in past Missouri elections. The Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity did a massive search of Missouri's voter rolls and cross referenced them to a master list of the deceased and made a startling discovery. They found 4294 names on the rolls, of people who are dead. 65% of the names on their list were last known to live in St. Louis city or St. Louis County. And even more startling, the records showed that 281 voted after the date of their death.

Joe Donahue of the St. Louis County Board of Elections told me that his office doesn't have the authority to removed the name of a deceased voters until he gets an official notification from the state or is presented a death certificate by the next of kin. Mary Wheeler-Jones of the St. Louis City Board of Elections says Inactive voters are dropped from the roles if the don't respond to 2 consecutive mailings or vote in 2 consecutive general elections. And she pointed out safeguards to prevent voter fraud include requiring voters to present an i-d when they go to the polls and their signatures are checked with a signature on file. But they admit that mistakes can be made.

Earl Glynn with the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity said his research has not turned up any evidence of actual voter fraud. He believes his findings are the result of sloppy record keeping and limitations to the checks and balances that local election boards can use. But his research raises a lot of concerns about the potential for voter fraud and puts election offices on guard for Tuesday's election.

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