With the 2012 Presidential Election right around the corner, some residents in Colorado have received letters from Secretary of State Scott Gessler questioning their right to vote. Using a federal database, Gessler procured the identities of nearly 4,000 people with select immigration histories and asked them to prove their U.S. citizenship.
Gessler believes these individuals could not legally vote in the United States because they presented green cards and other documentation when applying for a driver’s license, which proves that these individuals were not or currently are not yet legal U.S. citizens. However, with a goal to maintain accurate voter rolls, Gessler admits that some individuals who received letters may actually have a legal right to vote.
“We absolutely knew that folks would have been naturalized since showing proof of non-citizenship,” said Rich Coolidge, a spokesman for Gessler. “We also knew that other voters may not yet have been naturalized. We have safeguards in place and have only removed voters who voluntarily withdrew their registration.”
Gessler’s office has not yet implemented a protocol in terms of working with those individuals who do not respond to the letters.
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