Wyman: Vote fraud claim ‘ludicrous’; refers Trump to website

Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman

Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman

Associated Press

OLYMPIA — Washington’s secretary of state said Monday her office referred President Donald Trump’s commission investigating alleged 2016 election voter fraud to a publicly available link of voter data, but it reiterated no private information will be shared with the panel.

Trump lost the popular vote to Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November 2016 election. But he has alleged without evidence that up to 5 million people voted illegally.

Secretary of State Kim Wyman, speaking to reporters after returning from treatment for colon cancer, said it was “ludicrous on its face” to suggest there was widespread voter fraud across thousands of electoral districts in the United States.

Names, addresses and dates of birth of registered voters can be accessed by Trump’s commission because that information is public, Wyman said. However, Wyman, a Republican, said things like Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers, phone numbers or email addresses are private and not releasable.

Trump’s commission sent a letter to states last week asking for detailed information about voters. It also asked for party affiliations. But that information is not collected in Washington because voters don’t register by party and the state’s primary election system doesn’t require a voter to choose a specific party’s ballot.

Several states, including California and New York, are refusing to cooperate with the Trump commission. Others such as Texas say they can provide only partial responses based on what is legally allowed under state law, which is what Wyman is doing.

Washington Democratic Party Chairwoman Tina Podlodowski, who Wyman defeated to be re-elected as secretary of state last year, has called for Wyman to reject the request entirely, calling it a voter suppression effort. Wyman said Podlodowski was calling on her “to ignore the law.”

Wyman said she was confident that any scrutiny of Washington state elections would show no problems. “I have not seen evidence of voter fraud in this state, and I have not seen evidence of voter suppression in this state,” she said.

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