It was Election Day 2012. Two gentlemen came to the Hardy County Clerk’s office. They had obviously immigrated to the United States and they wanted to vote.
They could speak English. They could read English. They said they were American citizens.
County Clerk Gregg Ely asked if they were registered to vote. “No,” they said.
Could they register today, they asked.
“Sure, you can register today, but your registration won’t be processed until later this week,” Ely explained.
“If we register today, can’t you put it in the computer, so we can vote today?”
“I can’t process your registration today, but I can give you two provisional ballots,” Ely said. “You can vote today, but they likely won’t count.”