Trump launches commission to investigate voter fraud

Miranda GreerMay 13, 2017

Leahy's statement was a response to news that Trump assembled a "Commission on Election Integrity" to review voter fraud and voter suppression in federal elections. According to the Associated Press, the commission's members will include Democrats and Republicans.

Trump said in January he would seek an investigation into voter fraud in the election, even though the consensus among state officials and election experts is that it is rare in the United States.

Voting rights activists are concerned that the commission will be used to justify more state legislation to impose restrictions on voting, such as strict identification requirements.

"In order to promote fair and honest federal elections", Trump's order tasks the panel with studying practices that "enhance the American people's confidence in the integrity of the voting processes" or which "undermine the American people's confidence" in the same. At least three additional secretaries of state are expected to be involved, Bill Gardner of New Hampshire, Connie Lawson of IN and Matthew Dunlap of Maine.

During his campaign, Trump repeatedly alleged that the election system was "rigged" and after his election argued that such widespread fraud kept him from the popular vote. Trump won the presidency with an Electoral College victory even though Clinton received almost 3 million more votes. Kelly Ayotte would have won in New Hampshire if not for voters bused in from out of state.

"In fact, my office found zero substantiated claims of voter fraud in NY past year, as I detailed in my letter to Congress".

Michael Waldman, president of the New York-based Brennan Center for Justice, said the commission was formed to "find proof of the president's absurd claim" about millions of people voting illegally. This expected official announcement comes just two days after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey.

The bipartisan commission would not be limited to investigating Trump's election fraud claims but look at issues that have been raised over many years. Kobach has long claimed that there's widespread illegal voting by noncitizens in the US, despite the lack of evidence. It was his eighth voter fraud conviction since getting the power to pursue such cases in 2015.

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