January 20, 2020
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Secretary of State Dunlap says Maine won’t release voter data to Trump’s voter-fraud panel

John Clarke Russ | BDN
John Clarke Russ | BDN
Matt Dunlap

AUGUSTA, Maine — Secretary of State Matt Dunlap told the vice chairman of President Donald Trump’s Advisory Commission on Election Integrity on Monday that he will not provide voters’ names and other personal information that the committee has requested of all states.

Dunlap, who became a member of the commission in May, told the Bangor Daily News last week that he was reviewing Maine law to determine whether providing the information is legal.

In his July 3 letter to Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the vice chairman of the commission, Dunlap said turning over the data would be unlawful because information submitted to the commission would be accessible by the public. That runs afoul of Maine’s confidentiality law.

“Because the statute on confidentiality is directory and the statute on access to the voter file is discretionary, it is not possible for my office to comply with the request and also comply with the law,” Dunlap wrote.

The Trump administration formed the commission to examine election fraud in the United States.

In a letter to states last week, Kobach requested first and last names of all registered voters, their middle initials, their addresses, dates of birth, party affiliation, the last four digits of their Social Security numbers, how they voted since 2006, criminal histories and other information. Maine law says much of that data cannot be shared.

At least 30 states have turned down the federal request. On Sunday, Kobach called such resistance “idiotic.”


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