California rebuffs 2nd Trump commission voter data request
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s secretary of state says he won’t comply with a second request for voter data from President Donald Trump’s commission investigating alleged voter fraud.
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the commission’s vice chairman, sent a letter to California Secretary of State Alex Padilla on Wednesday asking again for voters’ names, party affiliations, addresses and voting histories if state law allows that information to be public.
In June, the commission requested the data for voters in all 50 states. Padilla and officials in at least 16 other states have refused. Some said they worried providing the data would undermine voters’ privacy and said the commission is politically motivated.
Trump formed the commission after he claimed without evidence that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election. Trump, a Republican, lost the popular vote to Democrat Hillary Clinton.
The new request was crafted to address some of the concerns raised by Padilla and others, Kobach wrote. The commission will keep the data confidential, he said.
“The Commission will approach all of its work without preconceived conclusions or prejudgments,” he wrote.
Padilla, a Democrat, refused to comply again and called the commission a “sham.”
“The commission’s new request does nothing to address the fundamental problems with the commission’s illegitimate origins, questionable mission or the preconceived and harmful views on voting rights that many of its commissioners have advanced,” Padilla said in a statement.
Kobach’s requests have prompted multiple lawsuits.
On Tuesday, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia denied a privacy advocacy group’s request for a temporary restraining order to prevent the commission from receiving the voter information.