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electionlineWeekly — January 25, 2018

Table of Contents

II. Federal-State Updates

According to The Washington Post, newly released documents that show that the now-defunct Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity purchased 50 million records from Texas and in the documents requests checked to box that explicitly asked that Hispanic surnames be flagged. White House and Texas officials said the state’s voter data was never delivered because a lawsuit brought by Texas voting rights advocates after the request last year temporarily stopped any data handoff.

Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Robert Brady (D-Pa.), co-chairs of the Congressional Task Force on Election Security have sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kristjen Nielsen seeking to clarify what the agency’s responsibilities are with regard to investigating voter fraud.

"It is unclear how the Department will carry out this charge given that the Commission never produced any findings,” they wrote, according to The Hill.  “Moreover, we are concerned that directing DHS essentially to take over where the Commission left off could distract the Department from its pressing obligation to protect US election systems from foreign interference and may undermine the burgeoning relationships DHS is building with state election officials."