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Fulton County Voting System Misidentifies Felons

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File photo of vote here sign. (Photo by Stephen Morton/Getty Images)

File photo of vote here sign. (Photo by Stephen Morton/Getty Images)

Atlanta (WAOK/AJC) — Fulton County officials have notified numerous residents that they may not be eligible to vote due to information stating that they were convicted felons. The issue with these notifications is that these residents are not actually convicted felons, many of them never having been arrested.

In the days and weeks prior to past elections, Fulton county has notified voters without checking the state’s records and there are never more that a couple of complaints. Jones stated that this month there were calls in the double digits regarding voter misinformation and subsequently reviewed data, after notices were sent out that told residents that they were possible felons and would have to appear at a court hearing to prove that they in fact were not.

Ralph Jones, the Fulton Registrations Manager, said that all 166 people that were affected by the glitch will be allowed to vote. County officials have resorted to blaming the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office for the software malfunction but the state says that it is the county’s responsibility to verify lists of potential felons by researching and verifying information. Fulton County Elections Director Richard Barron stated that it has always been the election boards policy to send felony notices without double checking data.

Dekalb County Election Director Maxine Daniels said that her office had problems with the Secretary of State’s Office felon data, however her office verified the data and did not send out false felon notices. She and b the issue on the state’s new election software, ElectioNet.

Written by Sherman H. Smith Jr (WAOK/Intern)

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