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Voters who changed names on driver’s licenses getting two ballots

Motor Vehicles Commission computer glitch creates new voter registration instead of amending old one

By David Wildstein, June 23 2020 8:52 pm

Hundreds of New Jersey voters — mostly women who have changed their names – are receiving two ballots for the July 7 primary election as a result of a computer glitch involving the state Motor Vehicles Commission (MVC), the New Jersey Globe has learned.

The problem appears connected to name changes on driver’s licenses.

Rather than change the name of a voter on the Statewide Voter Registration System (SVRS), the MVC is instead creating an entirely new voter.   In many cases, the original voter registration remains intact.

Multiple election officials have confirmed that some voters are receiving two vote-by-mail ballots, one under their current name and another under their former name.

Officials say that if a voter were to cast both VBMs, as long as the signature matches there is no system in place to flag the voter to Board of Elections workers.

The MVC automatically provides the Division of Elections with updated drivers license data, unless the voter specifically opts out.

The Motor Vehicle Commission has not received any notification of the issue involving double voter registrations, according to spokesman Jim Hooker.

“There is no special procedure for name changes,” Hooker said.” Whenever a customer does a transaction at MVC, all of their information is conveyed to the Division of Elections”

This isn’t the first complaint about the impact of the motor vehicle commission on the upcoming primary election.

There are reports of malfunctions with integrating data collected by MVC into the state voter database, leaving some election officers without the ability to properly send out some VBM ballots.

The Division of Elections did not immediately respond to a 3:03 PM request for comment.

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