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Oklahoma, Other States Reject 'Voter Fraud' Commission's Request For Voter Data

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SACRAMENTO, California -

States are steadily disclosing whether or not they will cooperate with a request for voter information from the commission set up by President Trump in May to investigate alleged voter fraud in the 2016 elections. 

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, tweeted Friday that his state would not comply with the commission's request for a list of the names, party affiliations, addresses and voting histories of all voters, if state laws allow it to be public.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said there is no evidence of voter fraud in the state.

"At best this commission was set up as a pretext to validate Donald Mr. Trump's alternative election facts, and at worst is a tool to commit large-scale voter suppression," he said in a statement.

On Wednesday the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity sent a letter giving secretaries of state about two weeks to provide about a dozen points of voter data. That also would include dates of birth, the last four digits of voters' Social Security numbers and any information about felony convictions and military status.

Other Democratic officials are also refusing to comply, saying the request invades privacy and is based on false claims of fraud. The secretaries of state in California and Kentucky, all Democrats, said they will not share the requested information.

Mr. Trump lost the popular vote to Democrat Hillary Clinton but has alleged, without evidence, that 3 to 5 million people voted illegally. 

In addition to the voter information, the letter asks state officials for suggestions on improving election integrity and to share any evidence of fraud and election-related crimes in their states. The data will help the commission "fully analyze vulnerabilities and issues related to voter registration and voting," vice chairman and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach wrote.

The California and Virginia officials said attention would be better spent upgrading aging voting systems or focusing on Russia's alleged election meddling. Mr. Trump has alleged "serious voter fraud" in both states.

"California's participation would only serve to legitimize the false and already debunked claims of massive voter fraud," Democratic Secretary of State Alex Padilla said in a statement. Clinton won California by about 3 million votes.

Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes expressed similar sentiments, reports CBS Lexington affiliate WKYT-TV. A statement released by her office said, "The president created his election commission based on the false notion that 'voter fraud' is a widespread issue – it is not. Indeed, despite bipartisan objections and a lack of authority, the President has repeatedly spread the lie that three to five million illegal votes were cast in the last election. Kentucky will not aid a commission that is at best a waste of taxpayer money and at worst an attempt to legitimize voter suppression efforts across the country."

Wisconsin's elections administrator, Michael Haas, said in a statement Friday that a voters' "name, address and voting history are public," but the state does not collect information about political preference or gender, and Wisconsin law does not permit the state to release a voter's date of birth, driver's license number or Social Security number. Should the commission want the public information, Haas said it'll have to pay the $12,500 fee for the statewide voter file.

Oklahoma, too, said that its voter roll is public, and an Oklahoma State Election Board spokesman said that the commission could have "a copy of the same database that anyone could get from us," according to NewsOK. Oklahoma will not release even partial Social Security numbers, however. 

Georgia will also provide only publicly available voter information, not private information.

The panel is seeking "public information and publicly available data" from every state and the District of Columbia, said Marc Lotter, a spokesman for Vice President Mike Pence, who is chairing the commission. Lotter described the intent of the request as "fact-finding" and said there were no objections to it by anyone on the 10-member commission, which includes four Democrats.

Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon, a Democrat, said he's not sure whether he will share the data because of privacy concerns. Vermont's top election official, Democrat Jim Condos, said it goes beyond what the state can publicly disclose.

In Missouri, Republican Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft said he is happy to "offer our support in the collective effort to enhance the American people's confidence in the integrity of the system." Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, a Republican, said he'll provide what state law allows.

Other states have not yet decided whether to comply with the commission's request. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, a Republican who is running for governor, is still considering the request, Cincinnati.com reported.

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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