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Justice Department demand voter purge data from 9 counties, including Palm Beach, in lawsuit against Scott

by Dara Kam | August 9th, 2012

Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher was among nine county elections supervisors subpoenaed by the U.S. Department of Justice as part of its lawsuit against Gov. Rick Scott’s administration over his non-U.S. citizen voter purge.

The demand for documents and other information is part of the discovery process in the lawsuit, scheduled to drag on past the Nov. 6 general election and into next year. The subpoenas went out to supervisors in Bay, Broward, Collier, Hillsborough, Lee, Miami Dade, Orange, Palm Beach, and Pinellas counties.

It’s unclear why Bucher, who she said received the subpoena on July 31, was included in the dragnet. She never did anything with the list of 115 Palm Beach County voters flagged as potential non-citizens by Secretary of State Ken Detzner’s office in March.

But the Justice Department lawyers demanded all documents or information related to the voter purge, dreamed up by Scott and launched by Detzner this spring. Detzner’s office sent out a list of about 2,600 potential non-citizens to the state’s 67 supervisors of elections, instructing the local officials to send letters to the flagged voters and ask them to prove they are citizens. Bucher and many other supervisors balked after some elections officials found the lists included the names of voters who had become naturalized citizens or were even born in the U.S. In one highly publicized case, a Broward County World War II Bronze Medal hero was identified as potentially being ineligible to vote.

Bucher is sending a letter to the DOJ telling them she didn’t participate in the voter purge and is handing over a copy of the disk containing the list of 115 Palm Beach County voters provided to her by Detzner, she said. The DOJ asked the supervisors to give them the information by Aug. 15, the day after Florida’s primary on Tuesday.

The Justice Department sued Scott’s administration in June, saying they believed the purge violates at least two federal voting laws. But later that month, U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle refused to grant the feds an injunction blocking the purge because Detzner said the state had already abandoned the effort.

In a court document filed on Aug. 1, the Justice Department said it wants to ensure that no eligible voters were erroneously removed from the list. The discovery period is supposed to last until after the general election in November.

But, at any time during the discovery period, “If the United States identifies any eligible voter inappropriately removed from the rolls, the United States will work with the State to reinstate that voter and, if the parties cannot agree on the reinstatement of the voter, the United States may seek appropriate relief regarding reinstatement of that voter, as well as the evidence supporting that relief,” Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general civil rights division, wrote.

Scott’s administration sued the Department of Homeland Security to gain access to the federal “Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements,” or “SAVE,” database Detzner said he needs to come up with a less error-riddled list of potential non-citizens. The department recently agreed to allow the state to use the database but the two governments haven’t yet finalized a deal.

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6 Responses to “Justice Department demand voter purge data from 9 counties, including Palm Beach, in lawsuit against Scott”

  1. Anybody BUT West Says:

    Once again. the GOP/Teabaggers can’t win unless they get rid of as many voters who are not likely to vote for GOP/Teabaggers. This is a GOP/Teabagger issue in search of a problem. It has NEVER been proven that there are voters in this country who are ineligible to vote who are actually voting in ANY election. The anti-democracy GOP/Teabaggers have invented this “problem” so as to DENY AS MANY ELIGABLE VOTERS AS POSSIBLE who are NOT like to vote GOP/Teabagger. It is my fervent wish that this so-called purge results in some people going to jail beginning with the crook n chief Governor, Rick Scott. Hopefully, the people of Florida have learned their lesson and won’t make the same mistake again by voting out Rick Scott in 2014!

  2. Rembrandt Says:

    You’re right, this is all a scheme to get felons, housepets and the deceased off the rolls because they tend to vote Dem every time…go figure!

  3. What do you expect? Says:

    Susan Bucher = Democrat = Debbie Wasserman Schultz=Obama=Eric Holder=DOJ

    What’s new?

  4. Votes are important Says:

    Democrats think it’s ok to enter the USA illegally rather than follow the laws of the land and apply for entry

    and it’s ok to vote when you are not a citizen of the USA

    We all have to show ID

    to get on an airplane,
    to apply for federal and county programs,
    to get into the PBC school district headquarters and the county’s judicial building,

    but to vote…hell, let everybody vote and let them vote as many times as they want.

    If the federal government can send 741 tax refund checks to 1 address in Belle Glade, then you know there are other facets of our government that are just as weak.

    Check on citizens, check on voters.

    Florida is notorious for this!

  5. Tim Says:

    Until Eric Holder is removed or in jail no state should listen to the Justice Department

  6. dafert Says:

    them she didn’t participate in the voter purge and is handing over a copy of the disk containing the list of 115 Palm Beach County voters provided to her by Detzner, she said. The DOJ asked the supervisors to give them the information by Aug

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