Oh, for the coveted feline vote.
In a bid to register conservative North Carolinians to vote, the political group Americans For Prosperity mistakenly sent voter registration forms with incorrect information to hundreds of men, women—and at least one cat.
The faulty forms went out along with hundreds of thousands of normal voter registration mailers, AFP said. Some of those forms, numbering in the hundreds, included inaccurate information, like the wrong date of the deadline to register or the wrong location for where to send the completed form, the News & Observer reports. And at least one such form was addressed to a woman’s cat.
"AFP Foundation has registered thousands of North Carolinians to vote through this registration drive, which is a great thing for the democratic process and getting more people involved," AFP spokesman Levi Russell said. "While there were non-substantive errors in our mailers, the program has been highly successful so far. Any large mailing even with 99.9% accuracy is always going to have a few inaccurate recipients, but we'll always be striving to make it better. Ultimately our forms are working as intended—when a resident fills out our form and sends it in, they will be registered to vote, period."
The liberal group American Bridge nonetheless jumped on the blunder to needle the Koch brother-funded conservative group in an email to journalists and supporters.
AFP has spent $25 million on ads this year but has recently focused its energy on voter registration initiatives in North Carolina, where Democratic groups have outspent Republicans two-to-one in booked ads, according to the Associated Press. North Carolina's contest between incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and Republican state House Speaker Thom Tillis is one of the year’s most competitive races.
Inviting a cat to register to vote may have been an even bigger mistake than AFP realizes. What little data science has gathered on the political tendencies of felines suggests they may not be the kind of voters AFP is looking for anyway.