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America The Vulnerable: The Problem of Duplicate Voting


The Government Accountability Institute (GAI) attempted to obtain public voter roll information from all 50 states to independently test for duplicate voting in the 2016presidentialelection. Duplicate voting is one type of voter fraud, defined as an individual casting more than one ballot. There are currently no government agencies or private entities that compare all state voterrolls to detect duplicate voting fraud.

GAI partnered with two reputable data analytics firms to perform the voter roll comparisonsand duplicate voting matches. However, GAI was unable to conduct a comprehensive review since a complete data set of state voter rolls is currentlyunobtainable. Access to public voting data varies widely among state elections officials. Some share it freely, while others impose exorbitant costs or refuse to comply with voter information requests.

Despite significant data acquisition obstacles, the reliability of acquired data, and an extremely conservative matching approach that sought only to identify two votes cast in the same legal name, GAI found 8,471 highly likely duplicate votes.

  • GAI obtained voter roll data from 21 states, amounting to 17percent of all possible state-to-state combinations.
  • Using an extremely conservative method of matching names and exact birthdates with other unique identifying information, GAI found 7,271 highly likely cases of inter-state duplicate voting. We identified another 1,200 cases of likely intra-state duplicate voting. Each instance represents two votes with the same voter information.
  • According to GAI’s commercial database consultant, “The probability of correctly matching two records with the same name, birthdate, and social security number is close to 100 percent. Using these match points will result in virtually zero false positives from the actual matching process. If there are false positives, theywould most likely be the product of errors in data sourcing and/or human error at the polling places.”
  • Extending GAI’sconservative matching method to include all 50 states would indicate an expected minimum of 45,000 high-confidence duplicate voting matches.
  • In the process of identifying potential duplicate votes, GAI found more than 15,000 voters who registered to vote using prohibited addresses, such as post office boxes, UPS stores, federal post offices, and public buildings.
  • Using Rhode Island as a test-case, GAI and Simpatico Software Systems discovered voter identity loopholes that likely transfer to other states.


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