Justice Dept. pledges to address hate crimes against Asian Americans
GAO to investigate Trump's voter fraud commission
The Government Accountability Office will investigate the activities of President Trump's voter fraud commission after three Democratic senators asked that the agency look into the matter.
Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) said Thursday that the government watchdog has accepted the request to investigate the commission. Bennet, along with Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), wrote to the agency last week asking for a probe.
In a letter to Bennet dated Wednesday, the GAO said that it had determined that such an investigation "is within the scope of its authority." The investigation will begin in about five months.
Trump's Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity has stirred controversy since it was established in May.
Trump has repeatedly claimed, without evidence, that widespread voter fraud cost him the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election. He won the Electoral College, but lost the popular vote to Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton by nearly 3 million ballots.
Critics have slammed the panel as a partisan effort to suppress voter turnout, particularly among minorities, and an effort to back up the president's claim.
Some lawmakers have also complained that the commission has not conducted its work in a transparent manner, and has ignored congressional requests for information on its activities.
"Without any PACEI response to Congressional inquiries, we fear that the manner in which the PACEI is conducting its work will prevent the public from a full and transparent understanding of the Commission's conclusions and unnecessarily diminish confidence in our democratic process," the senators' letter requesting the GAO review read.