Voters in Kansas being led to incorrect voting locations by third-party organization

Kansas Secretary of State's office said the misinformation appears to be from an out-of-state organization called Voting Futures.

Kansas voters are getting third-party text messages leading them to the incorrect polling place only a week before the midterm elections.

According to HuffPost, the Kansas Secretary of State’s office said the misinformation appears to be from an out-of-state organization called Voting Futures. Sunflower State voters are advised to be highly vigilant.

“The Secretary of State’s office does not use third parties to contact voters or share election information on our behalf,” Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab said Monday in a statement, HuffPost reported. 

Kansas voters -- man with hands spread
Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab answers questions during an interview in his office in Topeka, Kansas, in July. Schwab is a conservative former Kansas House member who has defended the use of ballot drop boxes that former President Donald Trump and other Republicans say are prone to misuse, even though there is no widespread evidence of that. (Photo: John Hanna/AP, File)

Voting Futures appears to have a scant website and a broken contact page. People have been complaining about the text messages on the organization’s Facebook page, and many have written about them on their social media profiles to alert others.

“State and local election officials are the trusted sources for election information,” Schwab continued, “and I encourage voters to contact our office or their county election office for assistance.”

The issue of incorrect third-party text messages to voters appears to be widespread. Similar information was sent out in Oregon earlier this month, also claiming to be from Voting Futures. A Twitter user contended it’s happening in Ashburn, Virginia, too.

“My wife received a false text earlier from a ‘Black Voter Coalition’ which confirmed her proper home address but ‘informing’ her that her voting site is now 20 miles away in a neighboring county,” @_AdrianWright shared Monday. “We are furious.”

The American Civil Liberties Union’s chapter in Kansas reportedly learned that some of the texts claim to be from Future Voices, which is neither in Kansas’ nor any other state’s official government database.

Sharon Brett, the legal director for ACLU Kansas, asked voters to phone 866-OUR-VOTE, the organization’s election protection hotline, if they ever receive one of these unsolicited texts. 

This “helps us track how widespread this was and where geographically it’s happening (ie whether it’s targeting voters in certain counties),” Brett noted on Twitter.

ACLU Kansas also received reports of messages coming from the organization Black Voters Matter. BVM told HuffPost a group it works with called Movement Labs, which has taken full responsibility for the mix-up, sent the texts out in error.

“We are deeply sorry for the confusion that these text messages created and have taken steps to correct this situation,” said BVM, according to HuffPost. “We are thankful for the community members and media representatives who brought this to our attention.”

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