President Donald Trump launched an investigation into voter fraud by signing an executive order on Thursday that will create a panel specifically dedicated to ensuring fairness in future elections. The bipartisan commission will determine whether there are any compromising weakness in the U.S. voting system and will review past cases of improper voting.
“The commission will also include individuals with knowledge and experience in election management and voter integrity,” said White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee-Sanders on Thursday. “The commission will review policies and practices that enhance or undermine confidence in elections and identify system vulnerabilities.”
Vice President Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach will head the “Presidential Commission on Election Integrity” as chair and vice chair, respectively, while lawmakers from both parties will be included to ensure that “systemic issues that have been raised in terms of the integrity of the elections” will be adequately addressed.
According to Sanders, five additional members have already been confirmed: Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson (R), New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner (D), Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap (D), Christie McCormick, commissioner of the election assistance commission, and former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell (R).
Trump has railed against the issue of voter fraud dating back to his time on the campaign trail and blamed widespread vote fudging as one of the reasons why Hillary Clinton won the popular vote.
“You can never really find, you know, there are going to be – no matter what numbers we come up with there are going to be lots of people that did things we’re not going to find out about,” the president said in January. “But we will find out because we need a better system where that can’t happen.”