Pennsylvania’s Democrat governor reportedly tried to stall the release of information about more than 11,000 non-US citizens who were registered to vote in the state.
Republicans lawmakers in Pennsylvania released the information, which was requested nearly a year ago, on Tuesday, following a belated admission from Democrat Gov. Tom Wolf that stalled in complying in an apparent effort to keep the issue under wraps until after the midterm elections in November, The Washington Times reported.
Republican state lawmakers, Reps. Daryl Metcalfe and Garth Everett released the information Wednesday, revealing that 11,198 non-citizens were confirmed by the state as registered to vote even though they were not eligible.
“I believe that we need to take action and have those people removed immediately from the rolls,” Metcalfe, former chairman of a House government oversight panel, told The Washington Times. “They were never eligible to vote.”
Metcalfe made a right-to-know request under state law in February 2018 for the voter information which Wolf had 30 days to comply with.
“On the 30th and final day to comply, the Wolf administration appealed the Office of Open Records’ ruling in favor of voter transparency and election integrity to the Commonwealth Court. The Commonwealth Court was tentatively scheduled to hear Wolf’s appeal on Dec. 10, 2018, well over a month after this year’s mid-term elections,” Metcalfe noted in a statement released Tuesday along with Everett, chairman of the House State Government Committee.
A week before the court hearing, Wolf’s administration withdrew the appeal and said that it would turn over the information.
“Approximately 11,198 illegally registered to vote foreign nationals were confirmed when the Pennsylvania Department of State and the Wolf administration finally decided to withdraw its obstructive appeal against disclosing this information in December 2018,” Metcalfe said. “However, since Pennsylvania’s most progressive and least transparent governor lacks the desire to take any substantive action to get non-citizens off our voting rolls, even a figure as significant as 11,198 is far from full disclosure.”
The state government in Texas revealed recently that 95,000 non-citizens had been registered to vote there with 58,000 of them having voted at least once since 1996.
“It is the tip of the iceberg,” Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton told The Times. “This shows the urgent need for citizenship verification for voting. The Department of Justice should follow up with a national investigation.”
Domingo Garcia, national president of the League of United Latin American Citizens, accused the GOP lawmakers of trying to “rig the system.”
“It’s clear that the right-wing elements in Texas government are trying to rig the system to keep power and disenfranchise 95,000 American citizens,” he said.“There is no voter fraud in Texas. It’s a lie repeated time and again to suppress minority voters, and we’re going to fight hard against it.”
But Metcalfe noted that the Democratic governor’s timing in withdrawing the appeal and releasing information was questionable at best.
“This governor has been an obstructionist in revealing this information to the citizens, and thereby I believe a participant in allowing this fraudulent activity to occur because it benefits him and his party,” he said.
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