Secretary of State Wyman: Trump’s widespread voter fraud claims ‘ludicrous’
SEATTLE – Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman says President Donald Trump and his voter-fraud investigators can have access to voter information that’s public and listed on the state`s website.
But for now, that’s all they can have.
Wyman’s decision follows a request and mounting pressure from the White House to hand over voter data, some of it personal.
President Trump has claimed that if it weren’t for voter fraud, he would have won the popular vote in last November’s presidential election.
Wyman called a news conference Monday, then called the president's suggestion there is widespread voter fraud "...ludicrous on it's face. And there are people like me across this country who have committed their careers to make sure our elections are fair and accurate and well run."
Trump has said the opposite, adding, "So many cities are corrupt, and voter fraud is very, very common."
The President's commission is seeking sensitive information about every voter:
full name, address, date of birth, political affiliation, voting records, military records, criminal records, part of his or her social security number, and more.
States, mostly blue ones, are pushing back hard. California is flat-out refusing to hand over the info.
"The president's allegations of massive voter fraud are simply not true," California's Secretary of State Alex Padilla said,
Even some states that voted for Trump are balking, including Utah, Mississippi, Alabama, Iowa, and Wisconsin. All say they'll hand over only some data.
This past weekend, Trump tweeted, "Numerous states are refusing to give information to the very distinguished voter fraud panel. What are they trying to hide?"
Wyman said she hasn't handed over anything, but instead directed the commission to the Secretary of State's website, where investigators can have access to voter information that's already public.
"At no time were we ever going to release any private data from our voter records on any Washington voter," Wyman said.
That means no sharing:
- phone numbers
- email addresses
- driver's license numbers
- any part of the social security number
- party affiliation
- where or how a voter registered to vote
- military status
- voter's language preferences.
To help steer his commission, Trump chose Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who calls the states' complaints "complete nonsense."
"We're looking at all forms of election irregularities - voter fraud, registration fraud, voter intimidation, suppression," Kobach said.
Intimidation and voter suppression are what many fear could come from this voter fraud investigation, but it's not a concern for Wyman.
"When I think about this commission's work, I'm really not sure what their end goal is," Wyman said. "I think Washington is going to do just fine."
Credible studies have determined that large-scale voter fraud is extremely rare to non-existent.
This week, Secretaries of State from across the country will be getting together for a conference in Indiana, where Wyman says this will be a big topic.