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Rep. Lofgren's letter to the EAC PDF  | Print |  Email
By Rep. Zoe Lofgren   
April 17, 2007

As chairwoman of the Committee on House Administration subcommittee on Elections, which has oversight over the Election Assistance Commission, I was alarmed at what appears to be an emerging pattern by the EAC to hold off on publicly releasing reports as well as modifying reports that are released. Two recent instances have brought to light the increased politicization of the EAC and this lack of transparency.

 

First, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government released a draft version of an EAC report on voter fraud and intimidation that shows significant changes were made to the findings of outside experts before the final report was released. The EAC released report "Election Crimes: An Initial Review and Recommendations for Future Study" does not accurately reflect the research in the original report "Voting Fraud and Voter Intimidation".

 

Second, in addition to the report on voter fraud and intimidation, the EAC recently released a report by The Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University on voter identification. Again, the EAC did not endorse the report, citing methodological concerns, and only released it after pressure from Congress.

 

The EAC is charged with conducting nonpartisan research and to advise policy makers. How are we to rely on advise if instead of full and accurate reporting, we are provided an inaccurate modified version which negates clear evidence to the contrary in the original research? I am outraged that the election process is being threatened by a lack of transparency and limited discussion.

 

In order to preempt any further problems with the release of reports from the EAC, I request all versions of the Absentee Ballot report and the Military and Overseas report, as well as any other overdue reports, including supporting documents and research, be provided to my office by close of business Monday April 16, 2007. these reports are oversue and I want to ensure that the delay is in no way related to what appears to be an ongoing problem of politicization of the EAC.

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