Recently, the state of Alabama withdrew from the voting data system known as the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). The system allows states to share citizens voter data with other states.
ERIC has become a controversial topic recently, especially among some conservatives. A growing number of states, led by Alabama and Louisiana, are beginning to leave or consider leaving the database.
Wes Allen, the Secretary of State for Alabama, made it his first action in office to remove the Yellowhammer State from the system, citing privacy concerns.
“I made a promise to the people of Alabama that ending our state’s relationship with the ERIC organization would be my first official act as Secretary of State,” Allen said. “Providing the private information of Alabama citizens, including underage minors, to an out of state organization is troubling to me and to people that I heard from as I traveled the state for the last 20 months.”
Florida, Missouri, and West Virginia joined Alabama on Monday in deciding to no longer contribute data to the system for largely the same reasons.
When asked about his opinion on the other states leaving, Allen said, “We respect each state’s right to make their own decisions regarding ERIC.”
Florida Secretary of State Cord Byrd cited similar privacy reasons for his state leaving the system. He also said the system is biased, citing ERIC’s “partisan tendencies.”
Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.