Archive for Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Trump disbands voter fraud commission amid fights, lawsuits

Vice President Mike Pence, left, accompanied by Vice-Chair Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, right, speaks during the first meeting of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington, Wednesday, July 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Vice President Mike Pence, left, accompanied by Vice-Chair Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, right, speaks during the first meeting of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington, Wednesday, July 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

January 3, 2018, 7:15 p.m. Updated January 4, 2018, 5:51 a.m.


— President Donald Trump is disbanding his controversial voter fraud commission amid infighting, lawsuits and state officials' refusal to cooperate.

On Twitter early Thursday he said states that wouldn't cooperate must know they have people voting illegally.

Trump convened the commission to investigate the 2016 presidential election, after alleging repeatedly and without evidence that voting fraud cost him the popular vote. Trump won the Electoral College.

The White House blamed the decision to end the panel on more than a dozen states that have refused to comply with the commission's demand for reams of personal voter data, including names, partial Social Security numbers, voting histories and party affiliations.

Trump said in tweets early Thursday that the states, mostly Democratic leaning, "fought hard that the Commission not see their records or methods because they know that many people are voting illegally," he tweeted.

"As Americans, you need identification, sometimes in a very strong and accurate form, for almost everything you do.....except when it comes to the most important thing, VOTING for the people that run your country."

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement Wednesday: that Trump signed an executive order to dissolve the commission "rather than engage in endless legal battles at taxpayer expense.

"He has asked the Department of Homeland Security to review its initial findings and determine next courses of action," she said.

Critics saw the commission as part of a conservative campaign to make it harder for poor people and minority voters to access the ballot box, and to justify Trump's claims of voter fraud.

Trump has repeatedly alleged, without evidence, that 3 million to 5 million people voted illegally in the 2016 election, delivering the popular vote to his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton. Clinton received more than 2.8 million more votes than Trump nationwide.

While there have been isolated cases of voter fraud in the U.S., past studies have found it to be exceptionally rare.

Critics also viewed the commission as part of an attempt to distract from the ongoing investigations into Russian election meddling and potential collusion between Moscow and Trump campaign aides. The intelligence community concluded that the Russian government mounted a campaign to help Trump win, hacking email accounts and spreading false stories.

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a conservative Republican and the commission's vice chairman, characterized the decision to dissolve the bipartisan group as a "tactical change" and argued DHS can pursue an investigation of election fraud more quickly and efficiently.

"The Democrats, both on and off the commission, made very clear that they were not interested in determining the scope and extent of voter fraud and, indeed, they were trying to stop the commission in its tracks," Kobach said. "The Democrats lost their opportunity, lost their seat at the table, by stonewalling."

Kobach, a vocal supporter of tough voter ID laws, alleged Democrats wanted no investigation. "Their motto is, 'Nothing to see here,'" he said.

One of the members of the commission, Democratic Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, sued the commission in federal court, alleging it had violated federal law by refusing to provide him documents available to other members, among other charges.

Dunlap on Wednesday said Kobach and his allies "were the ones that were stonewalling," saying they had "very definite ideas of what they wanted this commission to come up with."

Three Democratic senators — Michael Bennet of Colorado, Cory Booker of New Jersey and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — had also asked the U.S. Government Accountability Office to investigate the commission, which it agreed to do in October.

Kobach said he intends to work closely with DHS and the White House and expects the bulk of the DHS investigation to be done by midsummer.

More than a dozen states, as well as the District of Columbia, had rebuffed the commission's request for voter data, citing privacy concerns and a fear that complying would legitimize the idea that voter fraud is widespread.

While there have been isolated cases of people voting illegally, and many voter rolls contain outdated data, there is no evidence voter fraud is a widespread problem in the United States or has affected election results.

A study by a Loyola Law School professor found that out of 1 billion votes cast in all American elections between 2000 and 2014, there were only 31 known cases of impersonation fraud.

During the commission's first meeting, Trump had questioned the motives of states that refused to comply with the commission's request, suggesting they had something to hide.

Voter advocacy groups and Democrats applauded Wednesday's decision.

"It is no surprise that a commission founded on a lie of widespread voter fraud proved to be a fraud itself," said California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, a Democrat, who had refused to comply with the commission's request for voter data. "No taxpayer dollars should have been wasted on Mr. Trump's voter suppression crusade."

Dale Ho, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Voting Rights Project, accused the commission of engaging in "a wild-goose chase for voter fraud, demonizing the very American voters whom we should all be helping to participate — with the not-so-secret goal of making voting harder with unnecessary barriers.

"President Trump has tried and failed to spread his own fake news about voter fraud," Ho said.


Richard Heckler 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Who is pushing and funding voter suppression? Trump is a soldier....

How many VOTERS been purged from the voting rolls?

Check your status frequently.

Voters PROTECT Your Right To Vote = ORGANIZE A VOTING DAY PACKET to include:

--- a drivers license or state ID card

--- Military Discharge Papers

--- Keep this packet close to protect your right to vote

Do it today in case it is discovered one or more of the above cannot be found. None of these are difficult to replace. But will take time.

Some believe voter suppression is effective.

ALEC conservatives are keeping American focused on immigrants voting illegally

HOWEVER there are not enough illegal immigrants registered to vote much less participate in the voting process to impact an election.

Steve King 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Sweet. Too funny. Trump claims 3-5 million illegal votes. No proof. Sets up a panel with Mr Extreme, KK. KK gets his "blank" handed to him by the Judge who ruled he was withholding information from fellow committee members and told to share it. Now, Trump disbanded the panel. So, where's the proof millions voted illegally? Where's the proof Obama tapped his lines? Who's lying?

Now Bannon comes clean. Muller must have had a conversation with him.

The cookie crumbles.

Gary Stussie 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Judicial Watch noted that public records obtained on the Election Assistance Commission’s 2016 Election Administration Voting Survey and through verbal accounts from various county agencies show 11 California counties have more registered voters than voting-age citizens: Imperial (102%), Lassen (102%), Los Angeles (112%), Monterey (104%), San Diego (138%), San Francisco (114%), San Mateo (111%), Santa Cruz (109%), Solano (111%), Stanislaus (102%), and Yolo (110%).

In the letter, Judicial Watch noted that Los Angeles County officials “informed us that the total number of registered voters now stands at a number that is a whopping 144% of the total number of resident citizens of voting age.”

If illegal immigrants voted Republican, you would be able to see the Border Wall from the Space Station!

Michael Kort 2 months, 2 weeks ago

The Rats turn on the Rats ! ! !

Trump and Bannon disrespecting each other publicly !........Unless somebody else is tweeting on Trumps Twitter account?....... again ? .......Unlikely then,.... and now ! Bannon reading the impeachment tea leaves and repositioning himself....... or just writing a money making book and reinventing himself into a historic inside author ?

Wonder how long it will be before Trump turns on Kobach and Mike Pence for failing to find ( in real life ) Trumps ( imaginary ) 3 to 5 million fraudulent voters ? ? ?

One assumes that Kobach will soon make his " triumphant return " to Kansas ( after failing to find Trumps fraudulent voters ) and mark the " joyous occasion " by again referring " bizarrely " to his ideas that The League Of Women Voters and the ACLU are communist groups ? ? ?

Wow, there anyone around (?) more likely to be truely accused of being a front (?) for communist interests from somewhere else in this world, in this country (?), than some of Kobachs' Swampington, DC ( District of Collusion ) friends, ......who aren't members of the League Of Women Voters....... or the ACLU ?

Merrily we roll along ! ! !,..... roll along ! ! !,......roll along ! ! ! long are we going to go on mindlessly singing this song ? ? ?

Gary Stussie 2 months, 2 weeks ago

I suspect you will be singing YOUR song until about 2024.

Richard Neuschafer 2 months, 1 week ago

And we will be laughing at yours as long as you post.

Michael Kort 2 months, 2 weeks ago

What was it that Trump arrogantly said on a campaign stage on video tape about Hillaries missing Emails " Russia, If You Are Listening " and how is it that there was a constant trickle of new hacked Emails to lead then FBI Director James Comey into keeping the Email issue alive ( they played Comey like a fiddle..... over his desire to appear to be publicly transparent ) .

Give Putin credit because he has s good at what he does !

Gary Stussie 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Judicial Watch lawsuits responsible for "trickle of emails" .... FBI upper echelon continues to stonewall.

Steve Hicks 2 months, 2 weeks ago

From the Wiki-page for "Judicial Watch:"

"Judicial Watch is an American conservative non-partisan watchdog group that files Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits to investigate alleged misconduct by government officials.

"Founded in 1994, it has primarily investigated Democrats, in particular the Clinton administration, Obama administration and Hillary Clinton. It has also filed lawsuits against government climate scientists; Judicial Watch has described climate science as 'fraud science'. The group has made numerous false and unsubstantiated claims, which have been picked up by right-wing news outlets. Most of its lawsuits have been dismissed."

Wikimedia's review of Judicial Watch' record quite puts its claim to be "non-partisan"...or at all question.

You could have found out for yourself that Judicial Watch is an untrustworthy source, Gary....before using it as your "authority." Why didn't you ?

You realize that citing liars to "verify" the lies you want to believe...and want us to dishonest discourse...right, Gary ?

Ken Lassman 2 months, 2 weeks ago

This shows the Kansas people what a Kobach administration would be like: an even more partisan political environment where Kobach attacks those across the aisles for not going along with his flawed approach, cutting them out of the process altogether after his bungling things. This highlights his inability to work across the aisle in any semblance of a bipartisan manner, which is no surprise since Kansas politics has been this way for a while now. But if folks want something different and a more transparent, bipartisan process at the state level, they best look elsewhere. Kobach clearly is not their man.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 2 months, 2 weeks ago

The down side is Kobach will come back to Kansas to run full time for governor. I mean, he isn't doing his job as Secretary of State now, so why should he go back to doing that. NO KOBACH FOR GOVERNOR! STOP HIM IN THE PRIMARY! Real Republicans ought to get off their duffs and vote in their primaries. That's how these tea party radicals took over the GOP to begin with.

Alex Landazuri 2 months, 2 weeks ago

agreed! lets hope Marci Francisco get elected to SOS, preventing the ultra conservative running from winning the seat.

Michael Kort 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Soon it will be...... " China......Are You Listening ? "

Carol Bowen 2 months, 2 weeks ago

"Kobach said he intends to work closely with DHS and the White House and expects the bulk of the DHS investigation to be done by midsummer."

Guess who will be paying for Kobach's activities now.

Michael Kort 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Who will be paying for Trump and Kris Kobachs costly DHS voter fraud (?) investigations of US Voters and securing these results ?

I guess that it could be ..........Russia ?,........China ?........Iran ?............North Korea ?

Steve Hicks 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Maybe Trump and Kobach will reimburse the U.S. Treasury for all the money spent searching for proof of the nonexistent "facts" they wanted officially certified.

Maybe they could designate their reimbursements to go to a GOOD purpose: paying on the huge new budget deficit, for example, or funding the Children's Health Insurance Program again, etc.

Paying back the public money they wasted on their idiocy would be the RIGHT thing for Trump and Kobach to do.

Oh....wait...that'll never happen.

Never mind.

Richard Heckler 2 months, 2 weeks ago

The American Legislative Exchange Council will continue to pursue voter suppression through whatever illegal means possible.

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