President Donald Trump’s controversial commission on election integrity should meet again in January after being delayed for months because of eight lawsuits demanding its staff’s time, the group’s de facto leader, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, said this week. … Eight lawsuits sit in federal court opposing the commission from plaintiffs including one of the commission’s own members and groups like the American Civil Liberties Union and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. “I’m not aware of any presidential commission that has encountered so much litigation from special interest groups,” Kobach said. Kobach said his commission hasn’t met since September, largely because of that litigation.
“Much of the past few months has been spent by commission staff answering discovery requests for information and drafting affidavits and things that like — going through the legwork of litigation, and that takes time,” Kobach said. “We have a very small staff in Washington, D.C., and that staff has been bogged down in litigation.”
Several lawsuits claim the commission’s efforts to collect personal voter data violate voters’ right to privacy. Others take issue with the group’s transparency protocols. One of the commission’s members, Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, a Democrat, claims in a lawsuit that he’s been shut out of the commission’s work and denied documents.
Dunlap’s complaint says he brought the suit “as an action of last resort to enable him to fulfill the oath he took and the obligations to which he committed when he joined the Commission.”