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Politics

Maine has joined a consortium of states to share information that will better track and update voter rolls

Voter Purge Wisconsin
Charles Rex Arbogast
/
AP
FILE - In this April 5, 2016, file photo, Wisconsin voters cast their ballots in the state's primary at the South Shore Park Pavilion in Milwaukee. A judge's ruling to purge up to 234,000 voter registrations in swing state Wisconsin had Democrats vowing Monday, Dec. 16, 2019 to double down on efforts to make sure anyone kicked off the rolls is able to re-register before the 2020 presidential election.

Maine has joined a consortium of states to share information that will better track and update voter rolls.

The Electronic Registration Information Center is a non-profit organization that allows states to exchange data and track whether voters have moved and registered elsewhere or died while in another state.

Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows highlighted the partnership during appearance on Maine Calling this week.

"And it's a system with other states to exchange our voter lists so that we will know in the future if a voter in Maine moves to Florida and registers there, we will be able to take them off our rolls. We'll be able to exchange that information very quickly and do more to improve our voter lists," she said.

Bellows says that not only does joining the consortium help maintain the integrity of Maine's voter list, it also makes sure that more people are not prevented from voting because of outdated registration information.

States typically use records such as motor-vehicle information to periodically update voter rolls.

However, a recent study of voter rolls in Wisconsin by Science Advances showed a significant percentage of registered voters were incorrectly identified as having changed addresses, an error that could result in having their right to vote challenged or denied.

The same study said states should make their voter update processes clear to the public and better collaborate with other states.

Maine is the fourth New England state to join the consortium, which includes Connecticut, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Its membership was authorized in a provision of the biennial budget and it was supported by Republican Rep. Patrick Corey, of Windham, and Democratic House Speaker Ryan Fecteau, of Biddeford.