After Vetoing Voter ID, Gov. Cooper Vetoes Removal of Foreign Citizens From Election Rolls

Raleigh, N.C. – Lawmakers responded Wednesday to Gov. Roy Cooper vetoing legislation to remove foreign citizens from voting rolls in North Carolina, noting his radical opposition to the commonsense requirement and his effort to block voter ID threaten the integrity of the state’s election systems.

Nineteen foreign nationals were charged in 2018 for voting unlawfully in North Carolina.  Multiple defendants voted in more than one election. 

Senate Bill 250 Remove Foreign Citizens from Voting Rolls would require the State Board of Elections to review the voter registration status of persons disqualified from jury duty because they are not a citizen of the United States.

The State Board of Elections has said publicly that it does not have a regular voter list maintenance process to identify and remove non-U.S. citizens from the voter rolls, contradicting the Governor’s veto statement that his administration “has legitimate mechanisms to remove them from the rolls.”

S.B. 250 would provide that administrative framework, including an appeals process by persons identified as non-citizens on the voting rolls, for the State Board of Elections to ensure only U.S. citizens can vote in North Carolina elections.

“Removing foreign citizens from voting rolls is another commonsense law like voter ID to protect the integrity of North Carolina elections that has broad support among the people but has been blocked by the Governor,” said Rep. George Cleveland (R-Onslow), a sponsor of the measure in the state House of Representatives..

“I urge the Governor to point out the “legitimate mechanisms” he claims the State Board of Elections already uses to remove non-citizens from the voting rolls, considering the Board has said publicly it does not have a process or comprehensive database to do so.”

“With strong bipartisan concern for the security of our elections systems across the country, North Carolinians deserves an accountable elections process that guarantees every vote will count equally and fairly.  We are immensely disappointed the Governor opposes this shared priority.”

Governor Cooper also sued to block a voter ID constitutional amendment and then vetoed the state’s voter ID law implementing the ballot measure that was approved by a majority of the people in the Fall 2018 midterm election.