Politifact: “No, thousands of dead people are not registered to vote in North Carolina”

Politifact North Carolina:

A chain email has begun circulating in North Carolina that claims widespread irregularities in the state’s voter rolls.

The email caught our attention with its subject line, “PROOF !! North Carolina has the world’s oldest voters !”

It says there are thousands of registered voters in North Carolina who are 110 or more years old, including one person who is a whopping 219 years old.

Though tongue-in-cheek, the implication is clear – that many dead people are still actively registered, perhaps allowing others to commit voter fraud by casting ballots in their names….

T

he chain email’s most eye-popping claim is about that 219-year-old voter. It’s also the first mistake the email makes. It refers to that person as a male, but a list of voters included in the email clearly shows he is really a she.

There’s more intrigue: In 2012, when Breitbart wrote about super-old voters in North Carolina, it didn’t mention anyone over 200. We wondered if this woman only recently decided – nearly a century since being eligible to vote – that now was the time to finally register.

So we asked Pat Gannon, the spokesman for the North Carolina State Board of Elections. He said the state database does appear to show 5,391 people over 110 – a few more than the email mentioned, even – but that there are several honest explanations.

For the 219-year-old, he said, it amounts to just plain human error when a clerk was entering the person’s information.

“The ‘219-year-old’ voter was inadvertently given a birth date of 1797 instead of 1979, according to our research,” Gannon wrote in an email. “We’ve also determined that the voters that show up as 118, 120 and 154 years old do so because of data entry errors. Their dates of birth will soon be corrected in our database.”

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