Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "voting" ...

  • Inside Texas' botched voter-rolls review

    The press release landed late on a Friday afternoon: State officials had found 95,000 “noncitizens” on the Texas voter rolls — and 58,000 of those people had voted. The reaction from GOP state leaders, who have long pushed unsubstantiated claims of rampant voter fraud in Texas, was swift and certain. “VOTER FRAUD ALERT,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton tweeted. “Thanks to Attorney General Paxton and the Secretary of State for uncovering and investigating this illegal vote registration,” Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted, adding, “I support prosecution where appropriate.” Even President Donald Trump chimed in. “58,000 non-citizens voted in Texas, with 95,000 non-citizens registered to vote. These numbers are just the tip of the iceberg.” The state’s claims immediately raised red flags for our voting rights reporter, Alexa Ura. Ura knew the state had used driver’s license records — where applicants must reveal their citizenship status — to cross-reference the voter rolls and flag potential illegitimate voters. She also knew that in Texas, immigrants only have to renew their driver’s license every few years — meaning many thousands of people flagged by the state’s review had almost certainly become naturalized citizens before they registered and voted. Her breaking news story on state leaders’ “voter fraud” announcement explained those flawed methods and cast serious doubts on their claims. But her follow-up reporting — dozens of explanatory and investigative stories over as many weeks — had far greater impact than merely debunking irresponsible claims.
  • Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism: Undemocratic

    An investigative reporting class at the University of Wisconsin-Madison investigated the state of Wisconsin's democracy. It found that partisan gerrymandering, voter restrictions, secret campaign money, furtive legislative moves and fast-tracking of bills increasingly leave Wisconsin's citizens in the dark when it comes to state policy making and spending.
  • The Texas Observer with The Investigative Fund: The Surge

    If Texas’s border counties have some of the lowest crime rates in the nation, why are they so heavily policed? As Melissa del Bosque shows, the State of Texas has gone all in on border security spending, devoting $2.6 billion to special-ops teams, armored gunboats, high-tech spy planes, and a surge of law enforcement personnel in the past several years — on top of a multibillion-dollar federal border security operation. For her piece for The Texas Observer, in partnership with The Investigative Fund, del Bosque interviewed residents and elected officials in these border counties, now among the most profiled and surveilled communities in America, who described how this two-fisted border security buildup has taken a toll on their civil liberties. In a separate analysis, Del Bosque joins with reporter G.W. Schulz to uncover how Texas's $15 million high-altitude spy planes have surveilled one border town at least 357 times and may have traveled multiple times into Mexican territory.
  • Silenced: 1.5 Million Florida Felons Without a Vote

    “Silenced: 1.5 Million Florida Felons Without a Vote” is a television news special that raised awareness about the large amount of the state’s population that is ineligible to vote due to a prior felony conviction. The news special outlined the subjectivity in current way in which Florida restores felon’s voting rights, highlighted a proposed state amendment that would automatically restore voting rights to most Florida felons, and featured prospective voters discussing the issue after watching the special as a group.
  • Palm Beach Post: Locked Out

    After seven years in office, Florida Gov. Rick Scott's steps to control the number of felons given the right to vote bore startling results. Not only did he reduce grants of clemency from a flood initiated by his predecessor to a trickle, he granted far fewer to black men and Democrats, a one-of-a-kind Palm Beach Post analysis of clemency records revealed.
  • Locked Out: Florida sentences are for life

    A group of University of Florida journalists investigated barriers felons face when released from prison in the Sunshine State. For four months, they followed the lives of seven felons, some just minutes after they were released. In a digital-first, Netflix-style episodic investigation, these student journalists explored how the label “felon” follows 1.6 million Floridians long after their sentences end. The student journalists looked into the three major issues Florida felons face: finding a place to live, securing a stable job and earning back their right to vote.
  • APM Reports: Voter Suppression

    A handful of states are using someone's decision not to vote as the trigger for removing them from the rolls. The APM Reports analysis resulted in the first estimate of the so-called "use it or lose it" policy's possible impact. We found that no state has been more aggressive with this approach than Georgia, where Brian Kemp, as secretary of state, oversaw the purging of a growing number of voters ahead of his own run for governor, according to an APM Reports investigation. Voting rights advocates call it a new form of voter suppression, and they fear it will soon spread to other states.
  • 60 Minutes: Hacking Democracy

    During the 2016 presidential election, Russian operatives launched a widespread cyberattack against state voting systems around the country. While officials say no votes were changed on election day, America's election infrastructure remains vulnerable just seven months before the 2018 midterm elections.
  • Election Integrity: The Southern Vote Project

    In our groundbreaking, exclusive, “flood-the-zone” Southern Vote Project, WhoWhatWhy probed the state of election integrity and revealed deep problems, including widespread disenfranchisement of large segments of the voting public. Sending a full-time team to several southern states, we documented a broad range of factors, some seemingly intentional, that resulted in voter suppression or created cybersecurity vulnerabilities. Because we were uniquely focused on this topic, we started breaking stories that other outlets were unwilling or unable to pursue. Our work played an important role in compelling legacy news outlets to begin covering this issue. Our hard-hitting coverage also resulted in several lawsuits, which in turn brought about changes in how votes were counted through court decisions made in the heat of the elections.
  • City of Brighton enters new year with old investigation

    This story is a summary of months of reporting on an investigation into allegations of voter fraud. It presents never before heard comments from the local district attorney and Alabama Secretary of State. The district attorney announced an investigation on Aug. 19, 2016 after 80 applications for absentee ballots requested ballots be mailed to then-mayoral candidate Brandon Dean. Dean won the election with 52 percent of the vote, and 99 of 107 of the absentee ballots cast in his favor. The reporter's investigation shows that at least three absentee ballots cast were tired to vacant homes.