Last week, in a prescient move, Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap (D) warned his fellow members of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity that their request for voter information needed to be worded carefully to avoid drawing the ire or suspicion of the states.
As a HuffPost report reveals, Dunlap’s warning via the commission’s first conference call before going live with their request appeared to be heeded — but perhaps not enough.
The request, which was signed under the name of commission vice chair and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R), only makes reference to “publicly available voter roll data,” which in some states does include the last four digits of a social security number and party affiliation.
“I said, you want to be careful how you go at this because election officials are very sensitive guardians of this information, so you want to make sure you’re asking for it, not demanding it, and that it really should only cover the information that is publicly available in your state,” Dunlap said.
Nonetheless, 44 states and the District of Columbia have refuted the commission’s request, many citing concerns of potential voter suppression as their reasoning.