'25,000 dead registrants': Why legal nonprofit is suing Soros-backed Michigan elections chief

"We had pictures of their gravestones in the complaint," said former DOJ attorney J. Christian Adams. "We sent Jocelyn Benson, the secretary of state in Michigan, notice about these dead people before the 2020 election. She didn't do anything."

Published: September 2, 2022 6:31pm

Updated: September 5, 2022 11:22pm

Following a recent win in his legal battle to compel Michigan Democratic Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson to purge 25,000 deceased voters from her state's rolls, Public Interest Legal Foundation President J. Christian Adams explained his suit on the "Just the News, Not Noise" television show on Friday.

After the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan last week denied Benson's bid to dismiss the legal nonprofit's suit against her, Adams decried the George Soros-backed election official's unwillingness to update her rolls despite PILF's documentation of the dead voters.

"Yeah, 25,000 dead registrants on the active rolls in Michigan — like 4,000 of them had been dead for 20 years," said Adams, a former Department of Justice voting rights attorney. "We had pictures of their gravestones in the complaint. We sent Jocelyn Benson ... notice about these dead people before the 2020 election. She didn't do anything.

"We finally sued. She still hasn't done anything — tried to get the case dismissed saying we aren't allowed to sue" for lack of standing, "and she lost. So the case is gonna go forward. Every state that's faced these kind of lawsuits eventually settles with us. Let's see if she does."

Adams explained how blue states have sought to evade responsibility for maintaining voter rolls, opening the door to mistakes and mischief.

"[B]lue states in many cases — New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Maine, I could go down the list — are run by sort of ideological state election officials who are opposed to list maintenance," he said. "It was part of [Democrats' voting overhaul bill] HR 1, if you remember a year ago, that they were going to ban all this maintenance as a matter of federal law. That failed, of course, and they are against list maintenance. 

"They would rather have polluted voter rolls than mistakenly remove somebody who should not be removed — they'll tell you that's what they think ... the problem is, when you have a system that is now so heavily vote-by-mail, when you have all of these automatic things going to homes, polluted voter rolls is step one to problems — and that's what happened in Nevada, that's what happened in Michigan, Pennsylvania. Judith Presto, remember the name Judith Presto. She got registered to vote, voted by mail, and she was dead."

Adams was asked his opinion of the Biden Department of Justice under the controversial leadership of Attorney General Merrick Garland.

"Well, I guess I lived in the coal mine, and I was the canary back in 2010, with the New Black Panther case," replied Adams, who after stepping down from the DOJ accused the department of racial bias for dropping a voter intimidation case against the New Black Panther Party. "And I saw unequal enforcement of law up close over a decade ago. And the Civil Rights Division is always the first place where crazy starts.

"And now what's happening throughout the entire department? Why aren't they involved in our Michigan case? I thought they believed in enforcement of federal [National Voting Rights Act] law. They're not, of course — they'll probably take the side of Michigan if they did. The point is that DOJ has always been problematic in the Civil Rights Division. Now, it's across all the divisions."

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