Kobach: 'High Possibility' Commission Won't Make Any Recommendations

Katrina Barker
September 15, 2017

The group worries the same barriers they've experienced trying to vote in Kansas could spread nationwide with Kobach's position on the national Election Integrity Commission. For two decades, he's been the driving force behind suppressive policies like strict voter ID laws.

Before Tuesday's meeting, Democrats who agreed to serve on the panel had largely kept any reservations about its cast to themselves.

As Kobach prepared for the commission's second meeting on Tuesday, he was presented with another bogus voter fraud study, this one from New Hampshire. The information indicates whether a state is willing to comply with, is denying or is undecided on the request for data.

"Secretaries of state should be focused on making it easier for individuals to get to the polls and participate in our Democracy, not actively colluding with a president narcissistically focused on an enabling voter suppression to prop up the lie that he won an election he actually lost by over 3 million votes", Neil Sroka, communications director for DFA, told The Daily Beast.

The Kansas secretary of state told reporters after the meeting that such claims are "bizarre" because they assume the commission can perform a "Jedi mind trick" on state legislatures to make them adopt its recommendations.

"There's your leap in the logic".

FESSLER: Kristen Clarke of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law says that's because people think the commission will distort the facts, that its real goal is to push laws such as strict ID requirements that make it harder to vote. "People can duplicate vote between states without any mechanism to stop it".

Privacy advocates have raised concerns about the information being collected in one central place, although the commission has said the detailed data will not be made public and will be destroyed when the commission is done with it. That means they now live in the state and intent to stay for a definite period of time.

And he singled out New Hampshire as one of three states with "serious voter fraud".

The commission's credibility took another hit when it accepted testimony from Ken Block, the president of Simpatico Software Systems, who claimed he was "able to identify with high confidence, several examples of voter fraud" and that "no government agency is looking for voter fraud".

While Gardner says his participation on the presidential commission is a public service, US Senator Jeanne Shaheen, a New Hampshire Democrat, said, she was "concerned that reckless accusations of widespread voter fraud and illegitimate elections in New Hampshire could jeopardize our state's first-in-the-nation presidential primary".

Twenty states have sent in data, Kobach noted. He said "appears" might have been the wrong word.

Critics have pointed out that most of those voters were students attending college in New Hampshire who are legally allowed to vote in the state while living there - even if they haven't updated their driver's licenses.

"Until further research is done ... we will never know the answer regarding the legitimacy of that particular election", Kobach said.

When the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity was established four months ago, Kobach asked authorities in every USA state to turn over complete records of everyone who voted in those jurisdictions, with full personal details - a demand that was immediately rejected by the states, nearly unanimously.Complaints and concerns that states used to justify their refusal to cooperate with Kobach's investigators included the threat of computer hacks, and equally widespread concerns about the federal government amassing too much personal information in one database. "This isn't an investigation, it's a kangaroo court that has put our access to the ballot box on trial", Rep. Terri Sewell of Alabama said in a statement. "We're going to search for the truth".

We need to pay attention.

Both state agencies that provided Jasper with the statistics exposing voter fraud divulged an account of why numerous people in New Hampshire could vote without possessing in-state driver licenses - or without registering their vehicles up to 10 months following last November's election. The law, Temple wrote, imposed "severe restrictions on the right to vote". Driving is a privilege.

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