WA sec. of state says vote fraud claim 'ludicrous,' refers Trump to website

A letter sent to all Secretaries of State asked for voter roll data, and that's not sitting well with many in both red and blue states. KING 5 Political Reporter Natalie Brand spoke to Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman about how her office will resp

Washington's secretary of state says private voter data will not be released to President Donald Trump's commission investigating federal elections.

Her response follows a letter sent from the new commission last week to Secretaries of State across the country.

"At no time were we ever going to release any private data from our voter records on any Washington voter," said Secretary of State Kim Wyman on Monday. 

Read: Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity letter to Wyman

Governor Jay Inslee tweeted on Friday that Washington "won't share any information that isn't already accessible to the public."

"Personal information like social security numbers, phone numbers, email addresses and driver's license numbers will be protected," Inslee also wrote.

However, voter information that is publicly available by law via a records request includes a voter's name, address, gender, date of birth, voting districts, and voting history, meaning which elections they've voted in, not how they've voted.

"I'm not sure what the commission is trying to prove or where they're trying to go with this. We certainly want to be open and transparent and work with them, but at the same time, my job is to protect Washington state voters," said Wyman. 

The letter by the presidential advisory commission on election integrity comes months after Trump alleged widespread voter fraud in a series of tweets. 

Related: President Trump to ask for investigation after alleging voter fraud 

“The commission does not exist to disprove or prove whatever the President said in January,” said Kris Kobach, vice chairman of the commission, during an interview with NBC

However, he defended his commission’s inquiry by saying all the information being requested is publicly available.

“My question to them is what are you afraid of,” Kobach said of the elections officials critical of the request.

Meanwhile, the Washington Secretary of State’s Office received a separate letter from the Department of Justice requesting information about how states maintain accurate voter lists and remove ineligible voters, such as those who have died or moved.

Read: DOJ letter to Wyman

The Washington Secretary of State’s Office classifies both letters from the commission and DOJ as “unusual.”

“I’m highly confident that we’re not hiding anything,” said Wyman.

She also stressed that she has not seen evidence of voter fraud or voter suppression in Washington state and doesn’t believe it’s a problem in other states either.

“If we were seeing evidence of it, you’d see prosecutions in court.  We’re not seeing it,” said Wyman. “I’m kind of to a point we’re bring it on. If the commission unearths something that looks like big anomalies, then let’s dig into it.”

When asked about the risk of cyber threats, Wyman says her office will continue to work with the Department of Homeland Security to assess and prevent threats.

“I’m very confident that not only in Washington state, but across country, those cyber security threats are being met and preventing any interference,” she said.

© 2017 KING-TV


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