Election Integrity in 2018: Orange County, California
Questions often arise after contested elections: was the election conducted in a free and fair manner? This was certainly the case in 2016, where many concerns were raised before, during, and after the presidential election --- in particular about the potential intervention in the 2016 U.S. presidential election by foreign governments or their agents.
This research project will develop and implement a comprehensive ecological methodology to evaluate the conduct of the 2018 state and federal elections in Southern California, in partnership with the Orange County Registrar of Voters. This process will include forensic analysis of the county’s voter registration database, statistical analyses of election data to detect potential problems or fraud, surveys of voters and poll workers to understand their experiences and evaluation of the election, and an independent audit of the audits that will be conducted by the Registrar’s office.
Our project will evaluate the integrity of the 2018 elections in Orange County from top to bottom, in as near to real-time as possible, and present the results of this analysis to the public through a project website and a summary Election Integrity Dashboard. We plan a comprehensive, one-stop online destination, where researchers, stakeholders, policy makers, media, and the public, can turn to have a better understanding of the conduct of the election. Voters, stakeholders, candidates, and the media, will all be able to access the summary analytics produced by the research team. By spring of 2019, documentation, data, and code from the project will be available for replicating and extending this project for other, future elections. The applications behind this dashboard can then be used for similar studies of other elections, in the 2020 U.S. presidential election.