House Administration Democrats Statement on DOJ/ICE Subpoenas of North Carolina Voting Records

Sep 6, 2018

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Committee on House Administration Democrats issued the following statement after federal prosecutors issued subpoenas demanding that millions of North Carolina voter records be turned over to authorities at the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agency.

From Committee on House Administration Ranking Member Robert A. Brady (D-Pa.), Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), and Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.):

“We are outraged to learn the Trump administration has subpoenaed 15 million voting records in North Carolina.  However, we are not surprised.  Donald Trump began his Presidency with a lie that three to four million votes were cast illegally in 2016. He followed this by creating a sham Presidential Commission on Election Integrity, committed to perpetuating the myth of voter fraud and finding ways to suppress the vote. That commission found no evidence of voter fraud, and has since been disbanded but remains entangled in legal controversy. Meanwhile, Republicans in Congress continue to be complicit in the President’s efforts to disenfranchise voters by failing to hold even a single hearing on voter suppression taking place across the country. 

“The motives behind this overly broad subpoena request are obvious: The subpoenas were sent to state elections board and 44 county elections boards – many of which are counties with populations that are disproportionately poor and black.  These sweeping subpoenas could suppress voter turnout in two significant ways.  First, the subpoenas seek private voter information, including the actual absentee ballots that had been cast in previous elections.  This blatant violation of privacy can increase voter distrust in their government and make them less likely to vote in November.  Second, the administrative burden being imposed on counties to produce vast quantities of documents will make it difficult, if not impossible, for county boards of elections to be adequately prepared for the upcoming elections. 

“With less than two months before the November elections, state and local election officials simply do not have the time to deal with this abuse from the Trump administration.  This latest effort to suppress the vote demonstrates that Republicans fear that they will lose in November, and believe the best way to hold their power is to suppress voter turnout.  A Democratic majority in the House of Representatives will hold hearings to investigate this administration’s efforts to prevent American citizens from exercising their right to vote.”

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