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State Loses In Federal Appeals Court Over Voter Purge Method

Lauren Chapman
IPB News

One of Indiana’s methods to purge voter rolls will remain shut down after a federal appeals court decision Tuesday.

An Indiana law first passed in 2017 allows counties to immediately remove voters from the rolls if they’re flagged by the Interstate Crosscheck System. Crosscheck, created by controversial former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, is a multi-state database of voter registrations.

The state argues its use of so-called “confidence factors” to determine whether a voter registration matches – like Social Security number and date of birth – is enough to satisfy federal law.

But both a federal district judge – and now the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals – disagree. The latest appellate decision points to the National Voter Registration Act, which says a voter can only be removed from the rolls if they either ask to be taken off or fail to respond to mailed notifications and then don’t vote in two, separate federal elections.

The state could appeal this latest ruling. A fight over the law’s permanent fate is ongoing.

Contact Brandon at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.