President responds to states refusing to comply with voting commission

President responds to states refusing to comply with voting commission
South Mississippi voters will decide Tuesday which Democrat will be on the ballot this November in one of the state's Senatorial races. (Photo source: WLOX)

JACKSON, MS (WLOX) - A request from President Donald Trump for detailed information about every voter in the country is getting a rocky reception from many states, including Mississippi. And, per usual, the president is taking his battle to Twitter.

Saturday morning, President Trump tweeted about the controversy, saying, "Numerous states are refusing to give information to the very distinguished VOTER FRAUD PANEL. What are they trying to hide?"

Mississippi officials say they haven't actually received a letter yet from the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity requesting voter data. But if they do, we know the answer is,"No." Actually, it's even more colorful than that.

Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann issued a statement Friday saying, " My reply would be: They can go jump in the Gulf of Mexico and Mississippi is a great state to launch from."

The commission announced earlier this week that it sent letters to all 50 states requesting information to help them investigate voting-related problems. (See the letter to Connecticut's secretary of state below.)

Hosemann said he has seen a letter sent to another state that requested the following items, "if publicly available under the laws of the state":

  • the full first and last names of all registrants
  • middle names or initials if available
  • addresses
  • dates of birth
  • political party (if recorded in your state)
  • last four digits of social security number if available
  • voter history (elections voted in) from 2006 onward
  • active/inactive status
  • canceled status
  • information regarding any felony convictions
  • information regarding voter registration in another state
  • information regarding military status
  • overseas citizen information

The commission's Vice Chair, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is the author of the letter and has said he will provide the commission all of the information for voters in his state.

Thursday, officials in California and Virginia both declined the commission's request, and other states are expected to follow suit.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders blasted the decision by some governors and secretaries of state not to comply, saying she thought it was a political stunt. However, both leaders in both parties have refused, with some citing unhappy constituents who don't want Trump to see their personal information.

"Mississippi residents should celebrate Independence Day and our State's right to protect the privacy of our citizens by conducting our own electoral processes," Hosemann added.

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