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Our Research

  • Voter Purge Trends Among White & Black Voters, January 2020 to December 2021

    Voters are added and removed from state voter rolls on a revolving basis, in a process referred to as “purging.” VVN embarked on a large-scale, longitudinal research project involving hundreds of hours of analysis, examining over 400 voter file releases in calendar years 2020 and 2021, comparing purge rates for Black and White voters.

    VVN performed a full churn analysis on each set of voter files to discern which voters were new to the state’s rolls, which voters were dropped, and which voters remained on the rolls but changed their residential address. The purge rates for Black and White voters are remarkably similar nationally, but we did find some state and county jurisdictions removing voters at alarmingly high rates. Further research will be required to accurately estimate the number of voters illegally removed from the rolls.

    • 2022
  • After January 6, Are Republicans Leaving The Party?

    In the days and weeks following the Capitol insurrection on January 6, 2021 multiple major news outlets reported that significant numbers of registered voters were abandoning the Republican party, while others suggested that these defectors represented little more than statistical noise.

    VVN examined both current and historical voter files in a dozen states to track party changers among registered voters. We sought to discover trends from previous cycles to compare the results with the 2020 election, paying particular attention to party changers in the weeks following Trump’s victory in 2016.

    • 2021
  • COVID-19 pandemic: Voter Registration In Crisis

    The COVID-19 pandemic may profoundly impact the American electoral landscape. VVN investigated voter registration trends nationwide in the advent of social distancing and stay-at-home orders and found alarming and significant decreases in the number of new voters coming onto the rolls.

    • 2020
  • Democracy at Risk: Husted & Voter Suppression in 17 States

    The 2018 Supreme Court decision Husted v. Randolph, dealt a decisive blow to voter registration and voter equity by ruling that Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted may remove voters form Ohio’s rolls simply for not voting in several consecutive elections.

    To understand the wider implications, VVN examined voter rolls in Ohio and in the 16 states that signed an amicus (“friend of the court”) brief supporting the Husted purge efforts. We consider the brief to be a signal of future intent and these states to be the most likely to implement Husted purges in the near future.

    Among our findings:

    • Even in a best case scenario, 10 million voters, over 20% of the registrants in these states, would be removed in Husted style purges.
    • If purges were conducted after low turnout midterms, 17 million voters, or 30% of registrants in the 17 state study, would be removed.
    • Husted style purges will have a dramatic and disproportionate impact on younger voters and voters of color.

    Ohio is planning their first purge in the first quarter of 2019.

    • 2018
  • Interstate Crosscheck: Bad Methodology and Bad Policy

    The National Voting Rights Act (NVRA) requires states to periodically purge voter rolls of registrants who have moved out of state, have changed their address within the state, or have died. Registrars and Secretaries of State may choose from a variety of purge methods, providing the methods chosen are uniform and non-discriminatory.

    Interstate Crosscheck has emerged as one of the most crassly partisan solutions to voter file hygiene and has been widely pilloried by voter protection organizations. Crosschecks data methodology is questionable and its founder, Secretary Kobach, seems more intent on “proving” widespread voter fraud than in improving the quality of the voter lists.

    Here, VVN analyzes the impact of potential Interstate Crosscheck purges.

    • 2018

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