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Youngkin Vetoes Democrats’ Attempt To Force Virginia Back Into Leftist-Linked Voter Roll ‘Maintenance’ Group


Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin vetoed Democrat legislation on Friday that sought to force the commonwealth into rejoining the leftist-linked voter roll “maintenance” group known as ERIC.

“I have been explicitly clear about my affirmation of the legitimacy of our elections,” Youngkin wrote. “My focus is safeguarding Virginians’ private information and continuously improving an efficient, cost-effective voter registration system.”

Passed by the Virginia General Assembly along party lines, the Democrat-backed SB 606 mandated the state rejoin the Electronic Registration Information Center, or ERIC, a widely used voter-roll “management” system founded by far-left activist David Becker that was “sold to states as a quick and easy way to update their voter rolls.” In reality, ERIC’s membership agreement places a higher priority on registering new voters than on cleaning up existing voter rolls.

Virginia Elections Commissioner Susan Beals informed ERIC in May 2023 that the commonwealth would be exiting the program, citing concerns about the “confidentiality of voter information” and “controversy surrounding the historical sharing of data with outside organizations leveraged for political purposes.” Youngkin highlighted these concerns in his Friday veto and noted the “financial burden of rejoining ERIC includes membership fees, which have increased more than 115% since 2022.”

“ERIC’s mandatory Eligible but Unregistered mailing will cost the Commonwealth hundreds of thousands of dollars, which is superfluous considering Virginia’s Department of Motor Vehicles’ automatic registration policies and same-day registration for voting,” Youngkin wrote.

Since exiting the program, Virginia has entered interstate voter data-sharing pacts with six states to replace the functions ERIC performs. Youngkin noted that these agreements incur “no additional costs” to the commonwealth, and further explained how the Virginia Department of Elections “has increased its data sources by collaborating with forty-one states to obtain driver’s license surrender data, while ERIC only provides data sharing with twenty-five states.”

Similar to Beals, Youngkin expressed his concern about ERIC’s “sharing of personal information with external organizations,” which the Republican governor noted are “funded by sources that the General Assembly has on a bipartisan basis prohibited Virginia’s election officials from accepting.” The comment appears to be in reference to ERIC’s collaboration with the Center for Election Innovation and Research (CEIR), a different Becker-founded nonprofit responsible for interfering in the 2020 election to help Democrats.

During the 2020 contest, CEIR and the Center for Tech and Civic Life collectively received hundreds of millions of dollars from Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg. These “Zuckbucks” were then dumped into local election offices across the country to advance insecure, Democrat-backed voting policies, such as mass mail-in voting and the widespread use of ballot drop boxes. Analyses have shown these grants were heavily skewed toward Democrat municipalities, especially in swing states, effectively making it a giant Democrat get-out-the-vote operation.

Youngkin signed a bill banning “Zuckbucks” in Virginia elections in 2022. The measure received support from both Democrats and Republicans, even passing the Democrat-controlled Senate in a unanimous vote.

As The Federalist previously reported and communication records have shown, CEIR enjoys a transactional relationship with ERIC, which submits the voter-roll data it receives from states to CEIR. Upon receiving this information, CEIR curates “targeted mailing lists and sends them back to the states to use for voter registration outreach.” In other words, the leftist organization is developing lists of potential (and likely Democrat) voters for states to register in the lead-up to major elections.

Other states to withdraw from ERIC over concerns similar to those expressed by Youngkin and Beals include Iowa, Texas, Missouri, and more.

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