More than 160 South Dakota city voters list Walmart address

Staff Writer

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — The more than 160 registered voters who have listed a Rapid City Walmart as their address are at the center of a debate between two candidates for county auditor.
Pennington County auditor candidate James Bialota raised the issue Wednesday, the Rapid City Journal reported .
"I am shocked that there are hundreds of illegal voters registered here in Pennington County, between the hundreds registered to vote who supposedly live at Walmart or others registering at other private businesses and homes, that they don't own, live or work at," Bialota said in a news release. "I will update the voter list and bring equality back to the election process."
There are 162 registered voters who currently list the north-side Rapid City Walmart as their address, according to records from the county auditor's office.
Bialota's opponent, Cindy Mohler, said the auditor's office doesn't have the authority under federal or state law to revoke a voter's registration for listing a Walmart address. Mohler is the county's chief deputy auditor.
"If there's nothing in the state statute that says they can't do that," Mohler said, "you're doing a disservice to those people who want to vote if you remove them from the voter rolls."
Current Auditor Julie Pearson said the practice originated from individuals who travel full-time in recreational vehicles and oftentimes stay overnight in parking lots such as Walmart, the world's largest retailer that's headquartered in Arkansas.
Many RV owners now register to vote in South Dakota through mail-forwarding companies, she said.
The winner of the June 5 Republican primary will be elected to the job because there are no other candidates.

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