About ERIC and its influence over South Carolina Elections

In November of 2018, the Founder of Engage The Right and EFAC team member, Laurie Zapp, with the help of volunteers, began researching South Carolina’s active registered voter logs. Their focus was on deceased individuals whose names remained on these logs as active registered voters. To date, they have found 4,000 names, and some of these individuals passed away as far back as 2010!

On April 8, 2021, Laurie testified to the SC House Legislative Oversight Committee about these findings. After her testimony, Executive Director Marci Andino testified. During Ms. Andino’s testimony, she was asked what tools or programs the South Carolina Election Commission (SEC) uses to remove names of deceased voters, as well as names of individuals who move, from the voter logs. She replied that South Carolina uses an organization called Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), records from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), as well as The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC).

After the testimony on April 8, Laurie researched information on ERIC. The mission of ERIC is “assisting states to improve the accuracy of America’s voter rolls and increase access to voter registration for all eligible citizens.” States enrolled in and using, ERIC receive reports identifying voters who have moved within their state or out of state, voters who have died, duplicate registrations within the state, and potentially eligible voters not yet registered.

Reading about ERIC, most would probably agree their mission is an important and valuable one and this would be a great organization to be a part of. But is it? Further research prompts the question: Is the purpose of this organization to help maintain voter logs, or is this just another political organization with multiple ties to Democrats and organizations in power?

The links below are provided for you to learn more about ERIC. If your state uses ERIC, we suggest you do further research. Some important questions to ask:

  • When did your state join ERIC? Use the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and request the signed agreement between ERIC and the Board of Directors on the ERIC website.
  • How much has your state paid to use ERIC?
  • How much of a grant was provided to your state from The PEW Charitable Trusts?
  • how many people are removed from active voter logs due to information provided from ERIC (ie,people who move out of the state, deceased individuals, people registered in more than one state)?

About ERIC


ERIC was created in 2012 by the Brennan Center for Justice from a grant provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts. ERIC is a nonprofit organization. As a member, each state gets one member who becomes a Board of Director and governs ERIC within the state.

To research Brennan Center for Justice and its ties to Democrats and liberal organizations, go to https://www.brennancenter.org.

When ERIC first launched in 2012, 7 states joined: Colorado, Delaware, Maryland, Nevada, Utah, Virginia, and Washington. As of April 2021, these states have also joined: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin (the District of Columbia is also a member).


John Lindback, currently retired, was the first executive director of ERIC and part of the working group that created ERIC. He was a senior officer for Elections Initiatives at The Pew Charitable Trusts, Director of Elections in Oregon’s Secretary of State’s office for eight years, Chief of Staff for the Alaska Lieutenant Governor, President of the National Association of State Election Directors, and served on the US Election Assistance Commission Advisory Board. He was also a lobbyist for The Pew Charitable Trusts.


Jeff Jones, a data scientist, created ERIC’s software. Prior to this, he is credited with solving complex big-data problems for companies and governments. In 2005, he sold his company to IBM where he then worked as an IBM Fellow and Chief Scientist of Context Computing. At IBM he “led a team focused on creating next-generation AI for Entity Resolution technology, codenamed G2.” “At IBM, G2 was deployed in many innovative ways, including modernizing U.S.
voter registration through a joint effort with Pew Charitable Trust.” In 2016, Jeff started a new company called Senzing where he is CEO and Chief Strategist. According to the Federal Election Commission website, Jeff has given donations to the following Democrat candidates: Harry Reid, Dick Durbin, Obama for America, and Bernie Sanders to name a few.


David Becker is the Executive Director and Founder of the Center for Election Innovation & Research (CEIR). Prior to founding CEIR, he was Director of the elections program at The Pew Charitable Trusts. As the lead for Pew’s analysis and advocacy on elections issues, David spearheaded development of the innovative Electronic Registration Information Center, or ERIC. He also directed Pew’s partnerships with state government agencies, and with private sector partners like Google, IBM, Facebook, and others. Before joining Pew, David worked for the Department of Justice where he served as a trial attorney. David is still listed on ERIC’s website as a non-voting Board Member. During his time at the DOJ, he was accused by coworkers of being unable to be nonpartisan in his job. This quote appears in the following
article, “In his role with the DOJ, he was supposed to be nonpartisan,” van Spakovsky said of Becker, “but his emails uncovered in the Boston investigation revealed nasty, disparaging remarks about Republicans. Very unethical and unprofessional. I would never hire or trust him.”

Becker’s feelings regarding the 2020 election: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/election-securityexpert-david-becker-on-trumps-election-challenges-amid-assault-on-capitol/


ERIC has been provided grants from The Pew Charitable Trusts. They were given a grant of $794,527 in 2012, $138,879 in 2013, and $19,691 in 2014. According to the website, the states fund ERIC. Once signing on to use ERIC, the state pays a one-time membership fee of $25,000. Thereafter, they pay required annual dues.

Understanding Pew

Established in 1948, The Pew Charitable Trusts is a “global nongovernmental organization that seeks to improve public policy, inform the public, and invigorate civic life.” Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that “informs the public about the issues, attitudes, and trends shaping the world. They conduct public opinion polling, demographic research, content analysis and other data-driven social science research.” This organization states they do not take policy
positions. In 2004, The Pew Charitable Trusts established the Pew Research Center as a subsidiary to house its information initiatives. Pew Research Center is a nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)3 organization and a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts, their primary funder.

The Pew Charitable Trusts Donations
The below screenshots and information came from:
In 2020, PEW gave 99.5% of their money to Democrat candidates and not even 1% to
Republican candidates