Secretary of State
Grayson Issues Warning to Kentucky Citizens about Voter Registration Effort
(Frankfort, KY) Secretary of State Trey Grayson issued a warning to Kentucky citizens that his office has learned that a voting group has sent thousands of potentially confusing mailings to women across Kentucky asking them to register to vote. These mailings could cause confusion for Kentuckians because the deadline to register to vote in the upcoming May primary has already passed. According to the group, “Women’s Voices. Women Vote.” (WVWV), the voter registration mailings were part of a larger nationwide mailing. Grayson encouraged voters to still consider registering to vote so that they will be eligible for the fall general election, but wanted to make sure that citizens understood that any new registrants registering after the April 21st deadline will not be able to vote in the May primary.
“I appreciate Women’s Voices Women Vote letting us know about this possibly confusing situation for Kentucky voters,” stated Secretary Grayson. “It is important to stress that citizens can still register to vote for the November general election, but they will not be eligible to vote and in the upcoming primary.”
Page Gardner, President of WVWV, stated in her letter that:
“…Kentucky residents will receive this mail after the deadline for registering to vote to participate in the upcoming primary election. Please be aware that the mailing is not intended to encourage registration specifically for the primary, but simply to encourage voter registration in general. The mailing clearly indicates that the deadline to register to vote by mail for a particular election in Kentucky is 29 days before the election … We hope that this unfortunate coincidence in timing does not lead to any confusion or aggravation for either your state’s voters or registrars.”
Grayson had previously noted at a March press conference that many third-party registration groups are in Kentucky now and are trying to register voters. He stated that there have been some complaints to the State Board of Elections about some of these voter registration efforts. While most voter registration efforts are very helpful, they sometimes can confuse voters.
At the time, Grayson stated that WVWV had been sending voter registration cards and letters to citizens stating that they are not registered to vote, when in fact, many of those citizens are registered. To reduce confusion, voters can take the time to check their voter registration at www.vote.ky.gov/vic at the Voter Information Center.
Gardner noted in her letter that they use “the best available data … from a large commercial data company” and that “…[their] attempts to identify only unregistered women will not be perfect.”
The State Board of Elections has also heard from voters and from county clerks that WVWV have been sending automated calls encouraging people to register to vote which does not explicitly state that the voter registration deadline has passed for the May primary election.
“By all accounts, these voter registration efforts have the best of intentions, but sometimes the execution is not as accurate as we would prefer. If citizens have any questions, I encourage them visit our website or to call the State Board of Elections or their local county clerk,” said Grayson.
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