News Release: Politics

Oct. 15,  2008

Voter Registration Efforts Can Be Vulnerable to Fraud

Political canvassing and get out the vote efforts (GOTV) are a vital part of any campaign but recent controversies surrounding the activist group ACORN over alleged voter fraud highlight some of the pitfalls that can occur with unreliable help, says Emory University political scientist Andra Gillespie.

"The most partisan among us will use an investigation like this to cry foul, this time against the Democrats, who would likely benefit from ACORN’s registration efforts," writes Gillespie in a piece for the Routledge 2008 Election Review blog.  "However, before we rush to judgment that ACORN deliberately orchestrated a fraudulent voter registration effort, we must consider the role that casual labor still plays in doing GOTV and how casual labor can lead to systemic vulnerabilities that enable registration fraud."

Gillespie is an assistant professor of political science at Emory whose research examines political mobilization and race, as well as competition between minority groups. Gillespie's experience as a pollster and consultant has helped shape her research into what works — and what doesn't — in minority politics today as new leadership emerges separate from the civil rights generation. 404-727-9748 office, andra.gillespie@emory.edu

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