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No sign of voter fraud detected in Delta County

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The Delta County elections department reports a very problem-free election cycle concerning issues with voter fraud.

Rene Loy, chief deputy for elections in the county clerk's office, told the DCI, "Delta as a whole didn't have any issues. We just received comments and phone calls throughout the election cycle."

Loy submitted an information advisory from Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams that outlines some of the safeguards that Colorado's election system uses to combat voter fraud.

In that advisory, Williams explains, "In Colorado, our clerks and our judges prevent the overwhelming majority of attempts to vote that are improper. Voter fraud is rare but it undercuts our confidence in democracy, which is why it is so critical to protect against."

The advisory goes on to detail specific safeguards that are employed:

• The state participates in two programs to help identify individuals who might be registered or vote in more than one state;

• Obtains federal and state death records to remove those voters from the rolls;

• Works with sheriffs and the state Department of Corrections to ensure potentially-registered felons who are serving a sentence are not allowed to vote;

• Uses U.S. Department of Homeland Security data to identify noncitizens; and,

• Collaborates with the U.S. Postal Service in using change-of-address records to update its registration files.

Williams also provided data from the 2016 election involving mail ballots that were rejected because the voter did not provide ID as required or did not include a signature or the signature did not match the one on file.

Williams noted that voters have until eight days after an election to "cure" their ballots and take care of any problem identified by election judges.

"After that [eight-day] period ended, 21,408 ballots [statewide] were rejected -- or not counted -- because 2,593 did not provide IDs; 2,606 lacked signatures; and 16,209 signatures did not match. County clerks refer signature discrepancies to their local district attorneys, but those cases do not necessarily constitute voter fraud. A voter could have decided not to take care of the problem, for example, because the election was over and his or her vote wouldn't change the outcome," the advisory explains and adds, "Voters can have confidence in Colorado's election process."

Loy emphasized that Colorado works very hard to prevent all types of voter fraud. The county elections department has a fact sheet addressing a number of frequently asked questions on the subject. It is available by request.

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