Why People are Still Getting Ballots Where They No Longer Live

(Chuck Muth) – The Pigpen Project has been working on assisting election officials in cleaning up the voter files for about a year now.  It’s a slow and tedious process.  The laws related to election integrity are complicated, convoluted, and confusing.

As such, it’s easy to understand why some think there’s something nefarious going on by election officials when there are other factors to consider if you dig deep into this issue.  For example…

If, as election officials maintain, they’re doing the “list maintenance” required by federal law – which they are – why are some people who have moved still getting ballots in the mail?  Here’s one scenario…

“Joe Schmoe” is registered to vote in Nevada but moves to Florida.  He files an official change-of-address form with the United States Postal Service (USPS) and indicates on it that the move is “permanent,” not “temporary.”

This is an important distinction that many alleging voter fraud miss.  You see, it’s OK to be temporarily living out of state or out of the country – such as military personnel and students – and still be registered to vote in Nevada.

So National Change of Address (NCOA) data research should be limited to those who have checked off the “permanent” box on the form – which is exactly what the Pigpen Project does.

We have access to the NCOA database dating back three or four years.  So we know – using government data, not third-party data – who has filed a permanent change of address and no longer lives at the Nevada address where they’re registered.

And using the process outlined by federal law, every piece of election mail – including ballots and sample ballots – should be returned by the post office to the election department when mailed to these folks.

Which would trigger having them moved from “active” to “inactive” status.

Which means they’d no longer automatically receive ballots in the mail.

And we know the county clerks and registrars are doing this.  That’s why we periodically get reports showing thousands of voters have been removed from “active” status using this process.

Flaw in the Law

So if the post office knows certain voters have permanently moved to another state based on the NCOA data, why then does the post office still deliver mail ballots to people who are on the NCOA list?

Well, I recently learned an explanation…

You see, the list maintenance process only occurs during election season every two years.  However, the individual NCOA requests to forward mail at the local post office only last for six months, unless the person who moved renews it (most don’t).

So if someone moves more than six months before the election department mails out its voter confirmation cards or ballots, those cards and ballots won’t be returned by the local post office to the election department even though the change of address is still on the NCOA’s master list.

In Nevada, the Pigpen Project has identified TENS OF THOUSANDS of such voters who have fallen in this crack.  It’s a flaw in the law, not something election officials are doing intentionally.

To address this situation, there are two ways in law to “challenge” these voters, as detailed in a memo from the Secretary of State’s office last month.  But even those laws are filled with ambiguity and confusion.

So last week we filed a dozen “test” challenges designed to get clarity and direction for how to proceed as we approach the November general election.

This is what frustrates the tar out of me when it comes to how the Republican Party and some of its allies have handled this situation in the past.  They make wild allegations without doing the hard work needed to understand why the situation exists in the first place and the proper process to follow to fix it.

By law, the test challenges we filed last week need to be acted upon within 14 days.  Once we get the results and direction from those challenges, we’ll have a better idea how to proceed for the general election.

Hope this helps you better understand why the problem exists and what must be done to fix it.  I’ll keep you posted on developments.


What You Can Do

If you can’t volunteer on the Pigpen Project, you can still help support it by making a small contribution to pay for the software program, research, printing, pizza and donuts for volunteers, etc.

$10, $25, $50 or more would be extremely helpful in expanding the project by enlisting more volunteers.  Click here.

And lastly, if you know of someone who you believe has moved and should be taken off the “active” list, you can submit a request for investigation through the Pigpen Project by clicking here.


“Some things are believed because they are demonstrably true.  But many other things are believed simply because they have been asserted repeatedly – and repetition has been accepted as a substitute for evidence.” – Thomas Sowell

The Pigpen Project is a project of Citizen Outreach Foundation, an IRS-approved 501(c)(3) grassroots organization founded in 1992.  Donations are tax-deductible for federal income tax purposes.

Get Breaking News & Project Updates