Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R), the vice chair of President Donald Trump’s sketchy “election integrity” commission, on Wednesday accused states of “obstruction” for refusing to turn over sensitive voter information to the panel.
“At present, 20 states have agreed to provide the publicly available information requested by the Commission and another 16 states are reviewing which information can be released under their state laws,” Kobach said in a statement released by the White House.
He said reports that “44 states” have refuse to hand over information are “patently false” and “fake news.”
“At present, only 14 states and the District of Columbia have refused the Commission’s request for publicly available voter information,” Kobach said. “Despite media distortions and obstruction by a handful of state politicians, this bipartisan commission on election integrity will continue its work to gather the facts through public records requests to ensure the integrity of each American’s vote because the public has a right to know.”
A privacy advocacy group sued Monday to block the commission’s request for voter data, which it called “both without precedent and crazy.”
Many states have cited privacy concerns as cause for their refusal to hand over voter information, and Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merrill cited Kobach’s “history” of championing restrictive voting laws.