SACRAMENTO, July 19, 2017 California Secretary of State Alex Padilla issued the following statement following the first meeting of the President’s Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.

“Today’s first meeting of Trump’s fraud election commission confirmed what we already knew—it was created to make it harder for eligible citizens to register and vote and to indulge the President’s outrageous lie that millions voted illegally in last year’s election.”

“In a meeting that was closed to the public, Kris Kobach, and a commission made up of figures with long histories championing voter suppression policies, once again repeated debunked conspiracy theories about massive voter fraud. Noticeably absent was any meaningful discussion of Russian interference in last year’s election. Rather than investigating Russia, the commission instead will investigate American voters. At a time when we need to protect our democracy from foreign interference, this commission is a proving to be a waste of taxpayer resources.”

The commission already faces several federal lawsuits from national legal and voting rights organizations—alleging violations of federal transparency and privacy laws. Across the country, citizens and elections officials are speaking out against this commission and its overreach. As California’s chief elections officer, I will not send the personal information of California voters to this commission nor will I participate in its effort to roll back voting rights.”

“Our sacred right to vote as citizens is under attack. I will stand firm against this concerted effort to weaken our democracy.”