Republican and independent voters in Nassau County, New York, this week were shocked to find out that they had changed parties after all the voter information cards mailed out before an upcoming primary mistakenly identified every voter as a Democrat.
The mistake, which drew condemnation from local Republican leaders, was made by “human error,” according to Phoenix Graphics, the company responsible for sending out the voting cards.
“Phoenix Graphics Inc. made a human error on Voter Information Cards for Nassau County. The voters party affiliation may have been incorrect on the first mailing however polling site information is correct. We take responsibility for that. As soon as it was discovered we moved immediately to remedy the situation. This is an isolated event, but we apologize for our mistake, especially to Nassau County officials, who bear no responsibility for this problem. We have fixed the error and at no cost to taxpayers will deliver corrected Voter Information Cards as soon as possible,” the company said in a statement.
According to local outlets, there are over 500,000 non-Democrats in the county and the mistake will cost about $300,000.
“We’re already starting to get phone calls from people, saying ‘I’m a registered Republican, I’m a registered conservative – how come I’m being identified as a Democrat? Who changed my registration?’ And they’re quite upset about it,” said Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman.
“There’s a lot of confusion, there’s a lot of people emotionally upset about this,” he added.
The executive said that he did not believe that anything nefarious was going on.
“I don’t think the Democratic Party is engaged in a conspiracy to create havoc in their own primaries,” he said. “I don’t think the Democratic Party wants a bunch of Republicans showing up to vote in their primaries.”
Blakeman did say that the Board of Elections needed to review their processes, so that the “disturbing error” would not happen again.
Phoenix Graphics, a printing company based in Rochester, has over 40 years of experience in election-related printing, according to its website.
Nassau County’s primary elections are scheduled for June 27.