Last Updated on October 11, 2022
Around 30,000 noncitizens living in Colorado were sent postcards last month that encouraged them to vote. Democratic Secretary of State Jena Griswold’s office blamed the mishap on an “error.” The story was first reported by Colorado Public Radio News.
On September 27, department employees compared a list of names of 102,000 people provided by the Electronic Registration Information Center to a database of Colorado residents issued driver’s licenses, Fox News reported.
That Department of Revenue driver’s license list includes names of Colorado residents who have been issued special licenses for people who are not U.S. citizens. The list did not include formatting information that would have allowed the department to filter out noncitizens before the mailers went out, Griswold’s office said.
The Colorado postcards, which were printed in English and Spanish, specify that residents must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years old to register. The mailers instruct recipients how to register but are not a voter registration form, Fox News reported.
Griswold’s office said it was unaware that any noncitizens who received the mailers had tried to register to vote, adding that none will be allowed if they did try.
Her office is now in the process of notifying the 30,000 noncitizen recipients who mistakenly received the mailers. It is also employing several measures to prevent noncitizens from registering to vote, including comparing Social Security Numbers required for each application. County clerks will also have the ability to refer cases to local district attorneys for further review.
The incident is under investigation, Griswold’s office said.
Colorado’s Republican Party chair, Kristi Burton Brown, condemned Griswold for the error, saying in a Monday statement that “Jena Griswold continues to make easily avoidable errors just before ballots go out” by mail on October 17.