For all of the government panels President Donald Trump has disbanded recently, one that we're certainly not sad to see go is his ridiculous Election Integrity Commission.
The president disbanded the controversial panel focused on "election integrity", blaming a refusal by more than a dozen states to provide what he called "basic information".
"Rather than engage in endless legal battles at taxpayer expense, today President Donald J. Trump signed an executive order to dissolve the commission, and he has asked the Department of Homeland Security to review its initial findings and determine next courses of action", White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders stated.
He has claimed, without evidence, that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 presidential election. A Care2 petition authored by the League of Women Voters had called on the Trump administration to stop the "dangerous and misleading" commission attracted over 12,000 signatures; the White House has finally done the right thing by ending it.
The commission was led by Vice President Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
No widespread voter fraud has been shown.
Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson, the top Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, said voter ID laws, including in his home state, are meant to deter voters.
Kristen Clarke, president of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, a nonprofit advocacy group, also welcomed the news, calling the commission "a vehicle launched for the sole objective of laying the groundwork to promote voter suppression policies on a national scale".
In addition to activists and petition signers who put pressure on the Trump administration to end the fruitless hunt for voter fraud, the states did a lot of the damage to the commission by refusing to hand over requested voter information.
DHS could have broad legal authority to conduct an investigation into Trump's unfounded claims of widespread voter fraud.
Trump added that states should move towards voter I.D. laws, which Republicans have adopted but critics argue disenfranchises poor and minority citizens less likely to have state identification.
Trump won the Electoral College, giving him the White House, but he lost the popular vote to Clinton by nearly 3 million votes.
Kobach told the Topeka Capital-Journal last week that although the commission's work had been delayed because of the lawsuits, it would meet in January.
"We mounted successful litigation against the administration that exposed its failure to abide by federal transparency requirements and vowed to keep fighting until the commission was terminated", said Kristen Clarke, executive director of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. But several states expressed concern over how such information might be used by the administration.
The list of activists and organizations that challenged the commission is lengthy, including numerous nation's most prominent civil rights groups and good-government nonprofits.
The U.S. District Court in Washington ruled in favor of Dunlap and ordered the commission to provide Dunlap with the information on commission activities and communications he requested.
The Senate Democratic leader, Chuck Schumer of NY, said in a statement that "the commission never had anything to do with election integrity".