Friday, May 04, 2012

Non-Slated Candidates Blast Marion County Election Board For Releasing Voter's Confidential Information

When the Marion Co. Election Board initially voted to block non-slated candidates for office from gaining access to the same electronic voter information that is provided to a major party's endorsed candidates, the election board members said they were concerned about protecting confidential voter information contained in voting records from potential misuse. Yet that same election board is now under fire for sending out tens of thousands of post cards in the mail that contain sensitive information, including a voter's date of birth and the last four digits of their social security number. The purpose of the mailing was to inform voters of new locations for voting on election day, but it included confidential information that could be used for identity theft purposes. The board gave in to public pressure after a lawsuit was filed against it for not following state law and adopted a policy for the release of voter information in electronic format. Less than two weeks after the board adopted that policy, it now stands accused of violating it. "Voter registration has just sent this information through the mail on a post card that anyone could read," according to a press release from several non-slated candidates for judge and legislative races in Marion County. "The Election Board went to great lengths to create a very restrictive policy that denied us public information, and they immediately violated it," Greg Bowes, a Democratic candidate for judge stated. "It's frustrating that our campaigns have been hurt, but Voter Registration will suffer no sanction for this terrible mistake." Republican judicial candidate Paul Ogden added, "By sending out private information, it is now clear they were only trying to protect slated candidates and make it more difficult for unslated candidates to win."

UPDATE: This story is even worse than it first appeared. It turns out thousands of the postcards included the wrong location for a voter's polling place. The election board is now having to rush out new post cards with the correct address.


Paul K. Ogden said...

I would add that slated candidates already have access to tons of information on voters, including dates of birth, gender, voting history, last four digits of SSN, voter ID number, phone numbers, emails, etc. To claim that slated candidates can't have this info because it's confidential is clearly a ruse to cover up the fact they dont' want to give nonslated candidates information that would allow them to compete against slated candidates.

artfuggins said...

Then what are you complaining aboaut?

M Theory said...

I received those cards this week for a couple old roommates and my former boyfriend Max.

All of their info was on the card.

That's very sloppy work.

Cato said...

How can I keep my personal information away from these corrupt political parties?

Is there any way for me to opt out? Can I drop party affiliation and only vote in the general election?

What can I do to protect myself?

Dave said...

One more reason I'm glad I moved out of Marion County.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Art, look up the word "ruse" in a dictionary and get back to me.