NY Congresswoman Tenney Calls on DOJ to Investigate and Retain 2020-22 Election Records

just six of 100 of the most heavily populated counties… were able to provide their actual voter files from the 2020 election.

Congresswoman Claudia Tenney (NY-22), co-chair of the Election Integrity Caucus in Congress, today released the following statement regarding the release of the America First Policy Institute’s (AFPI) research report titled, National Review of Retaining Election Records from the 2020 Election.

“Today’s report from AFPI exposes massive problems in our election system. In some jurisdictions, the difference between the number of voters recorded and the number of ballots cast was as high as 8.8 percent in the 2020 election. However, because counties across the country failed to retain key election documents, we are unable to understand why there is such a discrepancy. The Civil Rights Act of 1960 requires counties to retain election documents for 22 months, and their failure to do so is a clear violation of federal law that undermines faith in the democratic process,” said Congresswoman Tenney. “When it comes to counting votes and accessing election information, the American people deserve absolute transparency and total precision. That’s why I am calling on the Department of Justice to launch an immediate inquiry into compliance with the Civil Rights Act of 1960’s records retention requirements. The DOJ must also demand the preservation of these records for the 2022 midterm elections and beyond.”

After an election is conducted, the public and elected officials should be able to verify that the number of votes is consistent with the number of voters. However, a groundbreaking report released today by AFPI found that many officials responsible for carrying out elections were unable to provide such basic information to verify this was the case. The Civil Rights Act of 1960 requires the retention and preservation of “all records and papers, which come into his possession relating to any application, registration, payment of poll tax, or other act requisite to vote in such election,” for a period of 22 months.

AFPI’s report makes clear that despite the records retention requirement under the Civil Rights Act, many of the most populous jurisdictions across the country are not complying with it. In fact, just six of 100 of the most heavily populated counties that were contacted by AFPI for information were able to provide their actual voter files from the 2020 election. Some counties failed to retain the records while others did not possess timestamped records dating back to the 2020 election and had likely already updated their voter files.

Further, those six jurisdictions that did provide these records demonstrated an average difference between the number of voters and the number of votes cast of 2.89%. Cobb County, Georgia had a discrepancy as high as 8.8%. The number of voters in an election should typically match the number of ballots cast, making these discrepancies deeply concerning. The discrepancies in these jurisdictions indicate that ballots were counted multiple times, were not counted at all, or that counties did not have accurate lists of who actually voted.

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