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Statistical Analysis HAVA Checks

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Date: 
January 4, 2009
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At the August 2008 meeting of the Government Accountability Board, the Board directed staff to prepare a statistical report analyzing the non-match facts that resulted from the newly implemented comparison between the Statewide Voter Registration System’s (SVRS) voter data and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT), and Social Security Administration (SSA).

There are several key findings from this statistical report:

  1. The majority of HAVA Checks result in a match. Ninety-one percent (91%) of HAVA Checks sent to DOT have come back with a match. Ninety percent (90%) of voters overall who received a HAVA Check currently show a match. Eighty-eight percent (88%) of voters match on their very first HAVA Check.
  2. The number of HAVA Check non-matches is decreasing due to the efforts of Wisconsin's clerks. The non-match rate for a voter's initial first-time HAVA Check started at 25% in August and is now down to 12%. The overall HAVA Check non-match rate after corrections are made is 10%. This percentage is considerably lower than the non-match rates reported by other states or the national average..
  3. Preliminary numbers show the non-match rate for Election Day Registrations at the November 4, 2008, General and Presidential Election is as low as 9%. This figure indicates that Election Day Registrations do not result in a higher number of non-matches, or higher probability of potential voter fraud, as compared to other methods of voter registration.
  4. The two most common reasons for non-matches are problems with names and driver license numbers. These two categories account for 92% of all the non-matches with the DOT database. This conclusion supports the comments made by clerks that name variations and typographical errors with the driver license number are the most common problems.
  5. There is not enough statistical information to conclusively determine that the number of HAVA Check non-matches are due to voters willfully giving false or fraudulent information versus HAVA Check non-matches that are due to some sort of error (name variation, typographical error, unclear handwriting, errors on the form).
  6. Between 18,000 and 24,000 voters would have been required to show Proof of Residence or vote on a Provisional Ballot at the November 2008 Election if the Board had imposed a consequence for a HAVA Check non-match. This would have been 78 times as many provisional ballots as the number cast in the November 2006 election, or a 7,709% increase.