UPDATE: Arkansas claims its voter data, the only submitted, will be 'deleted' | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

UPDATE: Arkansas claims its voter data, the only submitted, will be 'deleted'

Posted By on Tue, Jul 11, 2017 at 7:43 AM

The Donald Trump-appointed commission that's trying to assemble a massive trove of voter information has decided to hold off on asking states for the material while a lawsuit challenging the effort is underway.

Too late, as you know, for Secretary of State Mark Martin, who sent off Arkansas's information — including in many cases birth dates, street addresses, phone numbers and primary voting participation for 1.7 million people.

The lawsuit argues that the commission may have violated federal law.

The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), a watchdog group, has asked U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly to block the commission’s data request, arguing that the panel had not conducted the full privacy impact statement required by federal law for new government electronic data-collection systems.

I note that Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who'd earlier seemed to express no reservations about providing information public by law, parted company with Martin yesterday in an appearance at Governor's School, as reported in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

"I am not a fan of providing any data to the commission in Washington," Hutchinson said in response to a student's question.

"Even though it is publicly available information and anyone can get it — all you have to do is file a Freedom of Information [Act] request to get the information — I just don't want to facilitate the providing of that information to a federal database. I don't think that's helpful for us."

A spokesman for Martin, Chris Powell, said in response that the governor is not the boss of the secretary of state.

"Secretary Martin complied with the law as he is required to do. Secretary Martin did not write the law that makes this information public. Furthermore, Arkansas has a voice on the bipartisan Presidential Commission on Election Integrity thanks to Secretary Martin, who nominated a Democrat to serve on the body, and he stands behind their efforts."
Some points on Powell's statement:

* Some legal questions exist about whether the request by the feds was lawful — or one of those nasty overreaches A.G. Leslie Rutledge is always talking about.

* The state Freedom of Information Act requires compliance only for requests made by Arkansas citizens. Does a federal commission count?

* I guess Powell knows whereof he speaks in claiming support by lobbyist David Dunn's support for this data grab. Dunn is the former legislation Martin got on the commission through his pal Kris Kobach, the vote-suppressing secretary of state in Kansas. Dunn has refused numerous requests for his thoughts on this matter.

It could be that Gov. Hutchinson has read some of the dozens and dozens of outraged comments by Arkansas citizens about how freely Martin has shared their private information. See our Facebook post on the topic.

UPDATE: Chris Powell of the secretary of state's office told me late Tuesday afternoon that filings in the case challenging the data request indicate the Kobach commission has said it will "delete" the information it received from Arkansas. Powell said the office had not received written notice but said a member of the Commission staff had called to notify Arkansas of the intention to "delete" the material.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (12)

Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • IHOP coming down, but .....

    I always scan the Little Rock City Board for items of interest this week and this one caught my eye: A zoning measure required by a proposal to tear down the IHOP at Markham and University.
    • Apr 30, 2016
  • LR speakers blast state board for double standard

    A series of speakers, beginning with Sen. Joyce Elliott, denounced what they saw as a hidden agenda favoring charter schools at the state Department of Education and asked the state Board of Education for return of local control.
    • May 12, 2016
  • Satanic Temple: Make Rapert pay for Ten Commandments monument

    A petition drive has begun to encourage a demand that Sen. Jason Rapert pay for the legal fees in defending his Ten Commandments monument proposed for the state Capitol grounds. It's more work by the Satanic Temple, which has fought church-state entanglement around the country.
    • Aug 28, 2016

Most Shared

  • Industrial hemp pilot program coming soon to Arkansas

    One of the booths at this week's Ark-La-Tex Medical Cannabis Expo was hosted by the Arkansas Hemp Association, a trade group founded to promote and expand non-intoxicating industrial hemp as an agricultural crop in the state. AHA Vice President Jeremy Fisher said the first licenses to grow experimental plots of hemp in the state should be issued by the Arkansas State Plant Board next spring.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation