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South Carolina Election Commission

South Carolina currently requires complete Social Security numbers from people registering to vote.

Big win for voting rights: S.C. drops demand for full Social Security numbers

South Carolina has agreed to drop its requirement that people registering to vote disclose their full Social Security number, Democratic campaign leaders announced Tuesday.

They hailed the agreement — in response to a lawsuit filed by the state's Democratic Party and the party's Senate and House campaign arms — as one of the most important victories yet for one of their major 2020 strategies: filing voting rights lawsuits in many competitive states, hoping the courts will strike down an array of election regulations in time to help boost the party's turnout this fall.

"This is a massive early win," said Rep. Cheri Bustos of Illinois, chairwoman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

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Scott Olson/Getty Images

Nearly 600 were registered to vote in Illinois even though they they said they were not citizens when filling out paperwork at DMV offices like this one in Chicago.

Glitch added noncitizens to Illinois voter rolls

A programming error at the Departments of Motor Vehicles led to nearly 600 noncitizens being added to the Illinois voter rolls in the past two years.

The secretary of state's office notified the Board of Elections in a letter last month that 574 noncitizen residents of Illinois had likely been registered to vote inadvertently while applying for a driver's license or identification card between July 2018 and December 2019. Those people are now being taken off the voter manifests.

It's a relatively rare case of a government agency openly admitting such a mistake, which if left unaddressed could open the officials running the coming election to charges of incompetence or malfeasance.

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Bill Oxford/Getty Images

Democratic campaign committees are funding lawsuits challenging a variety of voter suppression tactics including rejection of mailed-in absentee ballots.

Democrats to spend more than $10M suing for voting rights in purple states

In recent years, competition between the Democratic and Republican parties to gain a tactical edge in elections has centered on technology — who had the most sophisticated system for identifying potential voters and getting them to the polls.

This time, though, the leaders of the Democratic congressional campaign organizations have settled on a new strategy: going to court.

The party has gained scattershot headlines in recent months by filing federal lawsuits in mostly purple states, alleging an array of their election laws are unconstitutional voting rights violations or contradict federal law. But the ambitions of this strategy, and the size of the investment, did not become clear until last week.

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Darren Hauck/Getty Images

Officials in Wisconsin have not carried out a judge's order to remove from the rolls more than 200,000 voters who seem to have moved.

Appeals court puts temporarily hold on Wisconsin voter purge

Update: The headline has been updated to reflect late developments on Tuesday, when an appeals court temporarily stopped the state from removing approximately 200,000 people from the Wisconsin voters rolls. In addition, one of the judges put on hold a ruling that found election commissions in contempt of court. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has more information.

Wisconsin's top court has cleared the way for about 209,000 people to be taken off the state's voter rolls, even while an appeal continues of a lawsuit about the future of the registration lists in one of the most prominent 2020 battlegrounds.

The state Supreme Court issued the order Monday night, just hours after a trial judge held three state election commissioners in contempt and ordered the panel to proceed immediately with the removal of the names.

The fight is at the most advanced stage of the several in bellwether states over the accuracy of their poll books. And how it's ultimately resolved could be enormously consequential for the presidential election. That's because the number of registrations in dispute is nine times larger than the margin of victory in 2016, when Donald Trump took the state's 10 electoral votes as the first GOP nominee to carry Wisconsin since Ronald Reagan in 1984.

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