Some voters face registration issues at polls

Story Comments Share

Reported by: Ian Silver
Updated: 11/05/2012 6:23 pm Published: 11/05/2012 6:05 pm

Thousands of Tulsa voters cast their ballots during early voting, but a small handful were turned away at the polls because they were no longer registered to vote.

Kiersten Lane wanted to teach her two young children how important it is to vote.

"We waited until they got out of school on Friday and we went and stood in line for about an hour," Lane said.

But that hour-long wait turned out to be a waste of time.

"It took them about 10 minutes to find me in the system, and they said that I had been deleted and taken out of the system due to inactivity."

According to Oklahoma law, there are five reasons a person's voter registration can be canceled:
-The death of the voter.
-The voter is convicted of a felony.
-The voter is legally determined to be incapacitated.
-The voter moved out of the area and registers elsewhere.
-The voter has not responded to correspondence from the county and has not voted for more than four year.

But none of those reasons apply to Lane and her husband.

In 2004, Lane and her husband voted absentee from Fort Hood, Texas, where her husband was on active duty in the U.S. Army. In 2008, they were stationed at Fort Sam Houston outside San Antonio, Texas, and again voted absentee.

"I am worried," Lane said. "They aren't accounted for. There isn't a record whatsoever of our votes for the last eight years."

"It makes me wonder. Makes me question everything."

Patty Bryant, the Tulsa County Election Board Secretary, said while it is uncommon, some people do have to be cut from the registration rolls.

"It's very small," Bryant said. "It's not a big number at all."

Bryant couldn't discuss specifics of Lane's voting record with FOX23 News, but she couldn't offer a good explanation as to why Lane and her husband would have been purged from the voter registration rolls. Since both had received absentee ballots, and since they never received letters saying their votes were invalid for any reason, Bryant said it appeared Lane and her husband simply slipped through the cracks.

"it's a letdown," Lane said. "It's disappointing. And our system in general: it's disappointing."

Voters whose registration is listed on the rolls as inactive are supposed to be given a provisional ballot, which may or may not be counted before the vote is certified.

But since Lane and her husband had been completely deleted from the registration rolls, their only option was to re-register for the next election.

Click here to check your voter registration status and find other important voter information in Tulsa County.

Story Comments Share

3 Comment(s)
Comments: Show | Hide

Here are the most recent story comments.View All

The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

mustangdriver - 11/7/2012 10:36 AM
0 Votes
Its not surprising. The government has it's hands full trying to keep up with the welfare and social security claims. Truth be known, they probably consider 1-3% of people slipping through the cracks as a good thing. Its all about the 97% right? haha

IMVHO - 11/6/2012 5:55 PM
0 Votes
If you do not vote regularly then you should always check to see if your information is still current. Polling places can change from year to year. Make sure if you have a name change you update your information. Most important - do it before registration closes for the next election.

goldschwager - 11/6/2012 5:06 PM
0 Votes
This samething happened to me today!! Read my story on my blog. Did Kiersten find anything out about this??
FOX23 Weather Center
Feels Like: 44°
High: 67° | Low: 30°
Mostly Cloudy

Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.
Mobile advertising for this site is available on Local Ad Buy.