Less than a year after a federal appellate court sided with the Obama administration to strike down North Carolina’s election integrity reforms, a state audit reveals that hundreds of votes were illegally cast by felons and non-citizens in just one election.
Voter impersonation, double voting and irregularities in absentee ballots sent via mail also tainted the election, according to the investigation conducted by the North Carolina State Board of Elections (NCSBE). The probe analyzed records from the 2016 general election.
State auditors found that about 500 ineligible people voted in 2016, more than 440 of them felons. Dozens of non-citizens from 28 different countries also cast ballots, the probe found. “A number of non-citizens said they were not aware that they were prohibited from voting,” the report states. “Interviews and evidence show that some non-citizens were misinformed about the law by individuals conducting voter registration drives or, in at least one document case, by a local precinct official.” North Carolina authorities are also investigating 24 substantiated cases of double voting in 2016. “Some violators appear to be ‘testers’ trying to find holes in the system,” according to the report. “Others claim property ownership in multiple jurisdictions should allow them to vote in each, and others brush past the law to support their candidate by any means necessary. Additionally, a case that initially appears to be a double voter—an individual who votes twice—may actually be a case of voter impersonation—an individual who casts a ballot using the identity of another person.”