Friday, Aug. 3, 2018
Secretary Dunlap releases
initial report on PACEI findings
AUGUSTA – Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, a former member of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity (PACEI), today released his initial assessment of thousands of the now-disbanded commission’s records, determining that the group had uncovered no evidence to support claims of widespread voter fraud.
“Contrary to what we were promised, these documents show that there was, in fact, a pre-ordained outcome to this commission to demonstrate widespread voter fraud, without any evidence to back it up,” said Secretary Dunlap, who shared his findings today in a letter to former PACEI co-chairs Vice President Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
Sec. Dunlap’s initial report is based on a review of 1,800 PACEI records that were provided to him for the first time on July 18 following a federal court order. Because this conclusion directly contradicts claims made by both the White House and former PACEI co-chair Kobach, Sec. Dunlap has also released the documents online to enable the public to assess the facts for themselves.
Although Sec. Dunlap had served as a member of the commission since its creation by President Trump in June 2017, he had been largely excluded from participating in the group’s activities, such as discussions related to meeting materials, witness invitations, goals, or outreach. In November 2017, after months of unsuccessfully requesting access the information he needed to meaningfully participate in the PACEI’s investigations, Sec. Dunlap filed a lawsuit alleging that the commission and its co-chairs had violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) by excluding him and other commissioners from its work.
On December 22, 2017, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly issued an order in Sec. Dunlap’s favor, instructing the PACEI to provide him with the documents he needed to meaningfully participate in the commission’s work. Just weeks later, rather than comply with the court’s order, President Trump disbanded the commission and government lawyers sought to continue blocking Sec. Dunlap’s access to PACEI files. In July 2018, the court issued another order, reaffirming the prior decision and demanding the government provide records by July 18, 2018.
The government produced records on July 18 as ordered. Secretary Dunlap continues to litigate whether the production was complete. Today’s release reflects his analysis of the documents he received.
While the PACEI files contained no evidence of widespread voter fraud, Sec. Dunlap’s review uncovered several troubling revelations. The files indicated that commission leaders considered issuing further large-scale voter data requests beyond Kobach’s initial June 2017 request for states to submit voter files to the PACEI for analysis, potentially even soliciting data from federal court clerks regarding individuals excused from jury service.
Secretary Dunlap’s letter to Vice President Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kobach, containing his preliminary findings, is available here: http://paceidocs.sosonline.org/PDF/Dunlap%20PACEI%20Docs%20Findings%20letter%20-%20FINAL.080318.pdf
The documents and correspondence of the commission, which Secretary Dunlap received July 19 per court order, are now available on his PACEI Docs webpage at http://paceidocs.sosonline.org/ for public review.