Trump Dissolves Controversial Election Commission

Donald Trump may have abandoned his commission on 'voter fraud', but voter suppression continues

President Donald Trump abruptly shut down his signature voter fraud commission on Wednesday and instead kicked the issue to the Department of Homeland Security.

The president disbanded the controversial panel focused on "election integrity", blaming a refusal by more than a dozen states to provide what he called "basic information". They fought hard that the Commission not see their records or methods because they know that many people are voting illegally.

Trump added that states should move towards voter I.D. laws, which Republicans have adopted but critics argue disenfranchises poor and minority citizens less likely to have state identification.

President Donald Trump has dissolved the presidential commission created to investigate his unproven claims that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.

"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.

The administration formed the commission, headed by Vice President Mike Pence, in May 2017 and instructed it to investigate "improper voting, fraudulent voter registrations, and fraudulent voting".

Though Trump was powerless to save his commission, he also trumpeted his own worldwide abilities, claiming credit for the resumption of long-stalled discussions between South Korea and North Korea.

While dissolving the commission, the administration did not concede the rarity of voter fraud in modern American elections.

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Yet state and local election officials, including some Republicans, said they refused to hand over voter information because of privacy concerns as well as the fact there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud. "The sham commission was a political ploy to provide cover for the president's wild and unfounded claims of mass voter fraud and to lay the foundation to purge eligible voters from the rolls".

"The commission's entire goal was to legitimize voter suppression", Vanita Gupta, president of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, and former head of the Justice Departments Civil Rights Division, told the Times.

Trump signed an executive order late Wednesday disbanding the election integrity commission, saying he didn't want to waste taxpayer money fighting with state governments over their voter data. "It was a change in tactics", Kobach told USA TODAY.

"We mounted successful litigation against the administration that exposed its failure to abide by federal transparency requirements and vowed to keep fighting until the commission was terminated", said Kristen Clarke, executive director of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

"I am deeply concerned that the work is being shifted over to DHS where it can be done behind closed doors and without the sunshine offered from open public scrutiny", Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos, a Democrat, said in a statement Thursday to The Associated Press.

The Department of Homeland Security will reportedly assume the functions of the commission.

The Senate Democratic leader, Chuck Schumer of NY, said in a statement that "the commission never had anything to do with election integrity". She also said the department is going to face similar obstacles in seeking information from the states.

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