tv Washington Journal Kristen Clarke Discusses Voter Fraud CSPAN May 30, 2017 8:03am-8:34am EDT
including "smells like dead elephants." and his most recent book, "insane clown president." during our live three-hour conversation, we'll take your calls, tweets and facebook questions on mr. taibbi's literary career. watch "in-depth" with author and journalist matt taibbi live from noon to 3:00 p.m. eastern sunday une 4. "washington journal" continues. host: kristen clarke is back at discuss the "presidential commission on election integrity". and before we get started, remind viewers what the lawyers' committee is, how you're funded and how you got started.
guest: sure. the laurie berkner band for civil rights was founded in 1963 at the behest of john f kennedy. -- to do more, to engage in the fight for civil rights in our country. yesterday, we marked his 100th birthday. we are a national civil rights organization, nonprofit. we work on issues such as voting right, criminal justice, education and fair housing issues, all across the country. we mount litigation and our goal is to move our country closer to equally and combat the discrimination that we wrestle ith in so many places today. the: may 11, mike pence and day of that launch, you released a statement condemning that
commission. why? guest: you know this commission, i think is a distraction from the real issues that we face fourth democracy today. we assume recent data that shows that about 61% of eligible americans voted in the 2016 election. and the reason why our voter turnout numbers are as low as they are is because we are still wrestling with voter suppression and ongoing voting discrimination. there's some real questions about the influence that russia had on the integrity of our elections in november. so this commission is a distraction from the real ssues. i'm very concerned a the chilling effect that this commission's activities could ave on minority communities.
and most fundamentally very concerned that it's distracting america from the real issues, which is how do we expand access to democracy in our country? host: here's the commission vice chair crisco vac on fox news just days after the announcement explaining what he intends to do. >> so the commissioner is log at more than just the 2016 election. it's looking at the entire issue of voting irregularitys and fraud and registration problems. so what we'll be doing is for the first time in our country's history, we will be gathering data from all 50 states and we will be use the federal government's data bases. so we'll be doing things like that that has never been done before and some statistics. this debate is so contentious
but oftentimes, the-the-debate doesn't have enough facts in the debate and we will be putting them on the table. host: and we're talking with kristen clark with the lawyers' committee for civil rights under law about that commission. if you want to join that conversation, call 202-748-8000, 202-748-8001 and 202-748-8002. clark clarks you were clng -- kristen clark can, you were getting the numbers what is we ere talking about. guest: he's really made this a core part of his agenda, looking for vote fraud. he's announced that there is widespread vote fraud across the state of kansas and it's caused a bit of hysteria with these allegations and claims.
o date, he's turned up one and there was one case that he successfully prosecuted last month. and this is one out of millions of votes cast in the state of kansas. so i'm concerned as he prepares to take this effort to a national stage and concerned about hysteria that he speaks to promote across the country. because when we look at the data and that's what's most important here. when we look at the real data, we know that there is no systematic or widespread problem of vote fraud in our country. but what we do is no that voter suppression laws like texas's photo i.d. requirement, these kind of show me your paper laws that he has promoted which require that people seeking to register to vote provide a photo copy of their passport when they want to register, we know this
is a real impact on the electorate and there are hundreds of thousands of people who are denied access to the ballot box because of those laws and those are the real issues we should be talking about. host: this is supposed to be a bipartisan commission. are you concerned with democrats that have been named to this commission or do you think democrats should even serve on this commission? guest: you know to me this is a waste of taxpayer dollars. we've got real problems in our country and this is an unfortunate use of taxpayer dollars. i'm concerned about folks like ken blackwell, the former secretary of state of ohio. he has been named on this commission and he built a career out of making hard for people to register to vote. during his time of secretary of state, he rejected thousands of voter registration forms because they were printed on the wrong paperweight, not on the right
card stock in his view. so i'm very concerned about some of the folks that they have pulled out to work on this commission. what i will say is this. there has been bipartisan rejection of this idea that there's voter fraud in our country. folks like paul ryan had said that he's not seen evidence of the millions of people who president trump claims voted unlawfully in november. we have folks like lindsey graham in south carolina who has rejected these claims and in fact urged president trump to pull back glimpse that he's made about the november 2016 election and urges the focus on real issues like russia's influence on our democracy. so across the board, we see folks on the left and the right unstabs ted this false
nated -- -- in our country. host: there is a new voting commission of unstabs nated their own to combat that trump voting commission that we've been talking about this morning. democrats fear as you said, that the trump commission will lead to poorer minority communities. a report from "u.s.a. today" noting this commission will document a reporter on voter commission tactics for all americans according to the atement that was provided to "u.s.a. today." is this an effort that you think the democratic national committee should be launching? is this something that should be bipartisan? guest: indeed. the right to vote is not a artisan issue. and my hope is we'll see bipartisan support at the end of the day for the very important project that the d.n.c. has
launched here. we do need a real focus at the national level on the problem of voter suppression. and we need to make sure that we keep congress focused on restoring the voting rights act in the wake of the 2013 supreme court decision which gaut core provision of the voting right and opened the doors for some of the suppression laws that we're seeing across the country. there has been bipartisan support for the voting rights act in the past. and there should be bipartisan support for restoring the voting rights act now many. host: kristen clarke is with the lawyers' committee for civil rights under law. nline is lawyerscommittee.org. host: first is paul. caller: i believe why trump is going on with this he lost the popular vote by over three million votes and he can't accept that he lost the popular
vote. for one thing if there was so uch voter fraud when they re counted wisconsin, how come they found a handful of votes that went to hillary clinton and it was minuscule, the difference? so that tells you right there that it's all a bunch of b.s. because trump doesn't want to accept the fact that he lost the popular vote by so many people. host: kristen clarke. guest: so senator lindsay gram -- instagram agrees with that -- lindsey graham agrees with that point. believes that president trump should withdraw that point because it threatens the ntegrity of his own. i believe we should have conversations about voting in our country that is supported by data, that are supported by evidence. and when we do that, we know that there are close to 40% of
americans who didn't participate in november. and that many americans are locked out because states make it hard for people to vote. we need a conversation that focuses on reforms like same-day voter registration. and early voting opportunities making those more widespread. preregistration opportunities for 16 and 17-year-olds. this is the kind of conversation we should be having in our democracy today. one that's focus on figuring out how do we get all americans to the ballot box? host: on twitter, mark stoughton asks this question. how do we know if there's no voter fraud if we've never studied it? guest: it has been studied. a center released a study today looking at 10 counties across our country with the largest numbers of non-citizens.
and only one reported any instances of alleged vote fraud. it didn't turn anything up it and resulted in the firing of the number of u.s. attorneys. there is no substantiated data that supports these claims that vote fraud is widespread and rampant in our country. host: raymond this clint top, pennsylvania, and an independent. good morning. caller: good morning. would like to ask your guest. at this point in time, i would like to see the commission going forward and see it uncovered. there was 500 illegals vote down in a precinct down in north carolina. dr. jill stein when he filed
federal suit to have a recount in michigan, it was about a week or two later that it came out and it was on the media. they reported that more people voted in detroit in the inner city than where rejstered. all of a sudden, she pull her lawsuit. what is wrong with that? all on unsubs situated report. threes three million of the illegals voted and because they've got driver's license now. host: kris cris, i'll let you respond. guest: i really urge the public to follow through some of the claims that have been put forth that have promoted this hysteria about vote proud. kris coy back -- kobach said
there are millions of people in kansas who voted unlawfully. he fought to obtain special powers to prosecute vote fraud n the state of kansas. and to date, he's only turned up one, one real instance of vote fraud out of millions of votes cast. host: with a about concerns about voter registration roles and the reports that have been done about mismatched voter registration roles? isn't that a right name for what could lead to the next step of voter fraud? guest: congress has studied this issue and there's a law, a national voter act also known as the motor voter law that sets out requirements that states and localities can follow to maintain updated registration
roles and you can remove people who have move or who have -- who may have died where certain requirements are met. so there is a federal law that provides uniform standard that can be followed across their country to maintain registration roles. but we don't need in 2017 is a commission looking at this problem or issue for the first time where there's no data that even supports the fact that there is an issue. in jerry is a democrat georgia. caller: good morning. i just want to ask kristen if she is familiar with what happened in the ala s recently. and if trump wants to investigate something, he should investigate how a white legislature stood up and said the only way to get blacks and he used a subhuman remark. the only way to get blacks out
of the legislature in alabama was they were trying to pass a gerrymandering bill. if trump wants to investigate, investigate that. i just want to get her response on that. host: sure. guest: so racial gerrymandering, partisan gerrymandering, there are real problems that we're wrestling with today. alabama, it's interesting that the caller references alabama. jeff sessions during his time as a prosecutor in the state of alabama undertook a vote fraud commission effort that looks a pence-kobach commission that we're seeing now. the impact of session is effort to look for vote fraud in alabama resulted in a prosecution of six civil rights workers including the marion three and these were
african-american who is are focused on registering poor black voters across rural parts of the state. he charged them with vote fraud and all of those vote fraud claims were ultimately dismissed by a jury. the most important aspect of this effort was the chilling effect that sessions' effort had on the black vote. there were elderly black voters who said they would never vote again after being entangled into jeff sessions's case into vote fraud. there were black voter who is were put on buss and forced to appear before grand jury and no prosecutions resulted from that effort. so i'm very concerned about this federal commission which could result in a similar national witchhunt looking into vote fraud and the impact that this could have on minority communities. host: you mentioned the word "chilling effect." the headline of yourin' piece, your op-ed with the reverend
jesse jackson sr. ran. a president trump sent chilling message to minority voters. sharon from colorado. good morning. caller: good morning. in regards to the vote fraud, here was a report in the "sacramento bee" last august. they did some research matching death registrations to people who voted in california and they found there were several exolves dead people who had voted multiple times in the general election. and the same sort of thing came out of a tv station, i believe, that have been doing research on this in philadelphia. given the fact that california does issue driver's licenses to illegals and the fact that some
areas such as san francisco allow illegals to vote in local school board elections. i think this is something that really needs to be researched because it wouldn't surprise me at all if you had a lot of illegals voting in california in he general election. guest: i wouldn't be surprised if the article that the caller referenced was one that merely put out reports that resulted in no prosecution or real evidence of vote fraud. when we hear claims like this, we often find that you have, for example, family members who bear the same name, who first blush maybe proumed to be someone who died but there is somebody in the same home that who bears the same name. we know that there is a greater chance that you will be struck
by lightning than see actual vote fraud unfold in polling sites across our country. so i urge callers to follow these reports. i think there is a lot of false hysteria that has been put out that suggests vote fraud is a widespread problem. and as somebody who does this workday to day, we know that these claims are not substantiated and off unfounded. host: let's go to william in new york. line for democrats. william, good morning. caller: hello, c-span. yeah, i feel like this is making a commission to investigate where the santa claus or the easter bunny or the tooth fairy exists. etch knows that santa claus is real and the dead people are the voter rolls. it takes a while to get them lost. everyone sees a dead person on the voter rolls.
of course they're there. it doesn't happen as soon as you die. and that's my comment. thank you very much. host: kristen clarke. guest: i agree. we need to focus on real issues that impact american democracy. and figure out most importantly, how do we get that 39%, 40% of americans who are not participating now engaged and able to register and successfully cast ballots in our elections? host: you talk about kris kobach. he discussed with the "associated press" his preparation for being on this commifplgs and he also talked about his work in kansas which you brought up earlier here's the interview he had with the a.p. just last week. >> i have no conclusions about what the commission will decide or the commission will find. you guys don't know what the numbers are. i have conclusions about kansas. because as secretary of state for the last six plus years, i've been gathering data because we're engaged in litigation
against the aclu. so in kansas, i have a very well-informed sense of how widespread voter fraud is, how many case on different forms of voter fraud. but with regards to the other 49 states, i don't have that level of expertise. so all i can say is i have conclusions about kansas that i hold very strongly and i have evidence in kansas that we've gathered that i know is accurate. but with regard with the other 49 states, i don't have the conclusions and the commission itself is a bipartisan group. any recommendations that the commission is make is control by them. host: kristen clarke, he was talking about his work in kansas. have you gotten involved at all n the efforts in kansas?
guest: yes, call for requirements are burdensome and unnecessary for people to vote in the state of kansas. host: this is the federal election assistance commission? caller: that's correct -- guest: that's correct. the former head of the e.a.c. issued a directive at his behest and we've been successful in the courts in blocking him. there are other groups that has challenged him in the at the present time circuit and the court in the 10th circuit in the case taking him on found that his claims of vote fraud were "pure speculation." pure speculation. so this is somebody, again, who is about promoting hysteria and omoting this false and understand substantiated clasme he's not been successful in the court.
host: can you talk about some of your other state efforts when it comes to voting rights cases? guest: sure. we are incredibly busy working to defend access to the ballot box. one recent victory we have is in the state of georgia. the ncra requires that state allow people to register to vote for federal elections up to 30 days. host: and this is the national voting registration act? guest: that's right. there's a election happening for the sixth district, the sixth congressional district in georgia. and georgia imposed the. 0-day registration deadline for that race. and we filed suit against g-free force them to comply with the
nvra. we got releifed. and the number of african-americans and other minority minorities has grown and the legislature has gone in in the middle of the decade to alter district lines to disempower those groups so that they can lock in and preserve incumbent who is are often not minority in certain parts of the state. so we filed suit challenging this racial gerrymandering plan and this is a problem thattist x's in many parts of the country.
host: albert this illinois. caller: good morning. we shouldn't kid ourselves as to what's really behind these voter i.d. laws. there is always been a requirement that when you go to vote, you produce an i.d. i live in illinois when you go to vote, you have to produce an i.d. but with the election of barack in 2008, all of a sudden, new forms of i.d.'s have to be produced. forms of i.d.'s that blacks, minorities and elderly and young people are more likely not to have but the majority of white people are likely to have. in 2012 in the re-election campaign, there was a republican state official in pennsylvania caught on videotape saying voter i.d. which will allow mitt romney to carry his fate, done. so let's not kid ourselves with what this is about. host: kristen clarke. guest: the caller raises an important point. when we look at states like
texas, we see that there are only certain forms of i.d. that were acceptable under texas's voter i.d. scheme. a passport and driver's license, which is fine if you're somebody who drives and owns a car and if you're somebody who flies. under texas's scheme, a conceal and carry permit is acceptable which is fine if you're somebody who owns a gun but a student i.d. was not assemble. -- acceptable. as the caller suggests when we peel back in the veil and look at the kinds of i.d. that were rider under these restrictive schemes, it's clear that they are intended to lock down certain kinds of voters. and when we looked a that data, we've seen that these laws have a disproportionate impact on the poor, on the elderly, on students, and often disprorpg natalie impact african-americans and latinos. in the state of texas, there are about 96% of people who have one
of the i.d.'s called by for the laws but about 4% or 5% who don't and to me, the democracy is broken if we tolerate rules that would lock out a significant number of americans from the ploot box. host: if viewers want to see more of the work that lawyers' committee for civil rights under law does, it's at lawyerscommittee.org on the internet. thanks for your time this morning. come back again. guest: thank you. host: up next, we will be talking about the week ahead for the trump administration. jim antle of the "washington examiner" joins us. and later, regina hopper of intelligent transportation society of america will join us to discuss the future of high-tech transportation systems in the united states. we'll be right back. ♪
>> it resulted in a naval victory for the u.s. over japan just six months after the attack on pearl harbor. and friday, american history tv will be live from the macarthur memorial visitor's center for the 75th anniversary for the battle of midway. features speakers including author of the "admirals." the five-starred a bhoirls won the war at sea. lliott karlsson with his book. anthony pelley, co-author of "shattered sword." and timothy orr, co-thor of never call me a hero."
on friday, on american history tv on c-span3. >> "washington journal" continues. host: jim antle is back at our desk. he is the politics editor of "washington examiner" talking about the week ahead for the trump administration as the workweek begins after the long holiday weekend and one big decision we know is coming this week because the president has tweeted that it would come this week is his decision on the paris climate deal. explain where we are on that reports from over the holiday weekend that the president was leaning towards pulling out of the paris climate deal. guest: it would be much more consistent with what the president ran on. a lot of his constituency is