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Alabama voters receive voter ‘postcards’ with wrong information


Misidentified district to which they belonged to

Thousands of voters in Alabama who were moved to a congressional district redrawn by a federal court to strengthen Black voting power received mail that misidentified which district they belonged to.

Ahead of the Super Tuesday primaries, 6,593 voters who are now part of the newly reformed 2nd Congressional District received postcards stating they still belonged to the 7th District, The Associated Press reports.

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLG) previously reported that 5,604 voters received those postcards, and 4,513 of them are Black.

One Black voter told the Montgomery Advertiser she received one of those postcards even though she knew she was part of the 2nd District. She said she even got anonymous calls that misinformed her of which day to vote.

“A lot of people probably fell for the bait, but I didn’t,” Adigale Brooks said.

James Snipes, the chair of the Montgomery County Board of Registrars, told AP a “glitch” in the county’s election software was to blame for the error, but it did not impact voters’ ability to vote for the correct candidates.

“Everyone who came to their precinct was able to vote for the correct candidates,” Snipes said. “This was a good-faith effort.”

Even though the postcards were mailed by the Montgomery County Board of Registrars, the SPLC blamed the Secretary of State’s Office for the error. Officials from the Secretary of State’s office told multiple outlets they were not responsible.

“The information in the statewide voter file is inputted at the county level. The Secretary of State simply maintains the database,” Laney Rawls told “If the information in the file was incorrect, it would have been inputted incorrectly by the county, not the Secretary of State’s office.”

The county sent updated notices to all the voters who received the mail with the incorrect information.

“This is more than a misstep. Providing erroneous information to thousands of voters on the eve of a hotly contested primary election could very well impact the turnout and the results of the election, for both Republicans and Democrats,” Bradley Heard, the SPLC’s deputy legal director for democracy and voting rights told the Montgomery Advertiser.?”There needs to be an immediate audit and public accounting from Secretary Wes Allen’s office on the scope of the problem.”? ?

Montgomery County now belongs to the 2nd Congressional District, Alabama’s newest majority-Black district. The county is home to nearly 160,000 voters.

Last year, the Supreme Court ruled that Alabama lawmakers had to create a second majority-Black district after finding that their old congressional map diluted the power of the Black vote. Only one of Alabama’s seven congressional districts was majority Black in a state where the population is 28 percent Black.

State legislators twice ignored the court order, so a panel of federal judges appointed a special master to redraw the state district lines in November. Now, nearly 49 percent of voters in the newly reformed 2nd District are Black, which gives them the opportunity to elect another Black congressional representative.

A similar error was caught in January when another set of postcards were sent. Election officials thought they had fixed the error in their software then.

“It is disappointing to see that voters in Montgomery County are facing classic disenfranchisement,” state Rep. Napoleon Bracy Jr. said.