Democrats are stepping up their criticism of the White House’s voter integrity commission, while trying to stave off panic about the commission’s requests for data — panic that has already led to thousands of voters asking to be removed from the rolls in key states. “It’s Republican overreach,” said Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez in an interview. “This voter commission exposes the Republicans very clearly for what they’re trying to do, which is simply to suppress the vote. You look at the people on this commission and they’ve been the long-term leaders of the campaign to do that. It’s not hard to figure out.”
The pushback, informed by years of state-by-state voting rights battles, has become part of the DNC’s “Resistance Summer” push that was designed to involve the party in base persuasion and organizing earlier than in previous cycles. The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, created after President Trump’s unfounded speculation that “millions” of votes were cast illegally in 2016, has created both a threat to organize around, and a problem that could undo the party’s voter registration efforts.
In several states, the commission’s July 1 request for voter data has led to a surge of voters trying to dodge the request by deregistering. In North Carolina, hundreds of people contacted the state elections office to inquire about their personal information, some of them asking about how to pull themselves off the rolls. In Colorado, an estimated 3,000 people have either suspended their registrations or asked that their information be made confidential, for a $5 fee.