The state of Pennsylvania agreed to remove the names of deceased people from voter rolls, an election-integrity watchdog group announced after reaching a settlement with state officials.
The lawsuit, (pdf) which was filed by the Public Interest Legal Foundation in November 2020, alleged that some 21,000 registrants who had died were still on the state’s voter rolls at the time of the 2020 presidential election. Pennsylvania agreed to compare its voter-registration database with the Social Security Death Index, and then direct all county election commissions to remove the names of dead registrants.
“This marks an important victory for the integrity of elections in Pennsylvania,” Public Interest Legal Foundation President and General Counsel J. Christian Adams said in a statement in announcing the court’s decision. “The Commonwealth’s failure to remove deceased registrants created a vast opportunity for voter fraud and abuse. It is important to not have dead voters active on the rolls for 5, 10, or even 20 years. This settlement fixes that.”
The lawsuit was filed after the Nov. 3 election and when then-candidate Joe Biden took a lead over President Donald Trump in Pennsylvania. Ultimately, the Pennsylvania Secretary of Commonwealth’s office certified the election.
The foundation said it found that 9,212 of the 21,000 voters had been dead for more than five years, and nearly 2,000 voters had been dead for more than 10 years.
The settlement stipulates that the “Department of State shall transmit to each county commission the names of the individuals registered in each respective county identified as deceased as a result of the comparison undertaken” with the “death data set received” from Electronic Registration Information Center that was then “compared to the full voter registration database … for the purpose of identifying persons who are ineligible to vote by reason of the registrant’s death.”
In response, the Pennsylvania Department of State, which didn’t agree in the settlement with the number of dead voters alleged, said the agreement to remove the voters “includes no finding of inadequacy on the part of Pennsylvania and its counties,” according to the Washington Times. Officials didn’t immediately respond to a request by The Epoch Times for comment.
“The Department of State is pleased that this agreement will offer Pennsylvania’s county boards of election another valuable tool to maintain the most accurate and up-to-date voter rolls possible,” the department added in a statement.
The Department of State also agreed to pay $7,500 to the foundation to partially cover attorneys fees and other related costs.
The case was originally filed in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania with the case number No. 1:20-cv-01905.