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Expert Brief

Trump’s “Election Integrity” Commission: Reactions from State Election Officials

President Trump created a “Presidential Commission on Election Integrity.” State election officials are already speaking out against it.

Published: May 15, 2017

California Secretary of State Alex Padilla

“With today’s announcement we are seeing the Trump administration’s continued fixation with unproven “massive voter fraud” and their concerted campaign of voter suppression.”

“In the months since President Trump first made his unsubstantiated and debunked claims of massive voter fraud, he has failed to provide one shred of evidence. In the process, however, he has impugned the integrity of voters, our nation’s elections officials, and our democratic process.”
Read more here.
Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merill
"The rationale for this commission was articulated in a baseless tweet from the president that claimed millions of illegal votes were cast. The facts don’t lie. Voter fraud is extremely rare. Yet time and again, the specter of voter fraud has served as an excuse to disenfranchise tens of thousands of eligible voters.
Read more here.
Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes
“While cloaked as an effort to protect the integrity of our elections, President Trump’s voter fraud commission will be anything but. The cloak hiding its real mission is thin; indeed, it will no doubt serve as a tool to further real and serious Republican attacks on American voting rights and leave eligible voters disenfranchised.”
Read more here.
Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon
“Preserving the integrity of our election system is vital. The test of credibility for any commission looking into possible improvements is whether its leadership appears committed to an unbiased inquiry. The president’s proposed commission seems to fail the credibility test. Vice President Pence serves a president who still falsely and irresponsibly insists that millions of ineligible votes were cast in the last election. Secretary Kobach agrees with those allegations, and has made a national name for himself as a zealous supporter of controversial measures to restrict access to voting – in the name of fighting “fraud.” Both individuals have an interest in steering the commission toward their pre-determined conclusions and outcomes."
Read more here.
Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie M. Gorbea
“President Trump’s Executive Order to establish a ”Commission on Election Integrity" is another attempt to revive a series of unfounded allegations of widespread voter fraud. His actions could suppress future participation by eligible voters. The right to vote is sacred and I want all Rhode Islanders to know I will continue to safeguard both their right to vote and the integrity of our elections systems."
Read more here.
Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos
“Today President Trump announced the establishment of a commission by executive order to investigate the presence of voter fraud in elections."
“Despite continued assertions by President Trump that widespread voter fraud, in the millions, occurred during the 2016 election, there has been no evidence that any widespread voter fraud has occurred. In fact, the vast majority of elections administrators and Secretaries of State, both Democrat and Republican, agree that widespread voter fraud does not occur – a fact that independent studies have confirmed.”
Read more here and here.