District judge refuses to block voter fraud commission's first public meeting

District judge refuses to block voter fraud commission's first public meeting
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A federal district court judge on Tuesday refused to block President Trump’s voter fraud commission from holding its first public meeting scheduled for Wednesday.

Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia denied without prejudice a request from the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law for a temporary restraining order against the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.

The civil rights group claimed the commission Trump created to investigate his claims of voter fraud in last year’s presidential election violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act by failing to put out a public notice or disclose details of conference meeting members held by phone on June 28.

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During that call, the Lawyer's Committee said the commission, led by Vice President Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, approved a plan to request an unprecedented amount of voter data from state election officials.

The groups sought a court order to force the commission to release its records and open its meetings to the public.

Last week, however, the commission started voluntarily releasing documents, including a number of colorful emails from concerned citizens, many of which mocked the commission.

“It took our lawsuit demanding full transparency in accordance with federal law for the White House to finally disclose some, though not all, materials concerning the so-called Commission on Election Integrity,” Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyer’s Committee, said in a statement Tuesday.

“While we are disappointed with the Court’s ruling denying our request for emergency relief, we are encouraged that the Court recognized that more documents are likely to be disclosed as our case continues. With the voting rights of millions of Americans at stake, we will continue the fight to ensure full transparency with respect to this so-called Commission’s activities.”

The voter fraud commission is scheduled to hold its first public meeting on Wednesday at 11 a.m. The commission’s mission, bylaws and operating procedures, possible topics for the commission to address, and future meetings are listed as topics for discussion on the agenda.