Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose will be able to continue a purge of inactive voters from the voter rolls after a federal judge ruled against Ohio Democrats who were seeking to delay the action until a third party entity conducted an audit of the process.
State law provides a timetable for purging people from the voter rolls in order to keep an up-to-date list of voters. This purge is intended to remove deceased Ohioans, former Ohioans who moved and those who have chosen to opt out of voting for six years.
To ensure that potential voters are not removed, the secretary of state’s office sends letters to those on the purge list that allows them to renew their voter status; 11,000 Ohioans kept their registration through this process.
Although this is generally a routine practice, Ohio Democrats called for an audit of the process after several reports found that some counties had active voters listed on the purge list. The Democratic Party sued the secretary of state in an attempt to halt the process, arguing that the office was improperly targeting voters for removal.
LaRose acknowledged that 1,600 Ohioans were improperly put on the purge list and removed them from the list. Several activist groups have alleged, however, that this number may be larger.