Dozens of S.C. residents have asked state elections officials about canceling their voter registrations in an effort to hide their personal information from President Donald Trump’s voter fraud watchdogs.
Since late June, more S.C. voters than usual have left the state’s voter rolls, according to S.C. Election Commission spokesman Chris Whitmire. Late June was when Trump’s Advisory Commission Election Integrity said it would ask states for voter data.
So far this month, 13 S.C. voters have unregistered. Most signed letters that offered no explanation for their request. Normally, only about four or five voters a month ask to leave the state’s voter rolls, Whitmire said.
Those numbers pale in comparison to the nearly 3,400 Colorado residents who have canceled their voter registrations since Trump’s commission asked states for voter data.
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The S.C. cancellations came as state elections officials field hundreds of calls from voters who say they are worried their personal information could be turned over to Trump’s panel.
Whitmire said officials explain to worried voters that unregistering would not remove them from the list of South Carolinians who voted in the 2016 election. It also would render them ineligible to vote unless they registered again.
“Usually, when people heard that, they lost interest,” Whitmire said. “It wasn’t a perfect solution to the problem they were trying to solve.”
Earlier this month, the State Election Commission refused to turn the voter information over to Trump’s panel, saying it is unlawful to give it to anyone other than a registered S.C. voter.
However, S.C. GOP chair Drew McKissick said he would buy the data and turn it over to Trump’s panel. So far, McKissick has not purchased the data, Whitmire said.
South Carolina has roughly 3.2 million registered voters.