Iowa county says it cancelled voting rights of the wrong man

An auditor says her office mistakenly cancelled the voting rights of a northwest Iowa rancher who has the same name as a felon.

Clay County Auditor Marge Pitts said Friday her office made the rancher, Christopher E. Wood, ineligible to vote last fall.

She said that was an “unfortunate error” because he had done nothing wrong and remained eligible. She said her office had intended to cancel the voting rights of the actual felon, county resident Christopher R. Wood.

Pitts said she worked with the state to correct the mistake and restore Wood’s voting rights after he complained. She noted that there were no elections during the time when he was disqualified.

The rancher said he was stunned when he got a letter from the county saying he was disenfranchised. He said locals have a long and unfortunate history of confusing him with the other Christopher Wood.