Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz on Friday provided the fullest explanation yet of his office’s search for ineligible voters and picked up bipartisan support for the effort. Schultz, a Republican, was joined by Democratic Attorney General Tom Miller at a news conference to announce the state’s formal response to a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and a Latino group challenging new administrative rules related to voter registration. Miller backed up Schultz’s actions and said the state would oppose the ACLU’s request to prevent the rules from taking effect.
But even more than laying out the state’s legal response, the news conference allowed Schultz to explain exactly what his office is doing on an issue that for years — even more so this summer — has been fraught with political and partisan overtones. After reviewing Iowa Department of Transportation records, Schultz said, his office determined that 3,582 non-U.S. citizens are registered to vote in Iowa. Of these, more than 1,200 voted in the 2010 general election and more than 1,400 have voted in elections since then.