Wis. Elections Commission will sell some voter info to presidential commission

MADISON — Wisconsin election officials say they’ll sell some voter information to a presidential commission but won’t supply other data that’s not publicly accessible.

President Donald Trump’s Advisory Commission on Election Integrity sent a letter to the states on Wednesday giving them two weeks to provide about a dozen points of voter data, including birthdates, the last four digits of Social Security numbers and any information about felony convictions. Some Democratic election officials have refused to comply.

The Wisconsin Elections Commission issued a statement Friday saying most of the information in the state’s voter registration system is public and available for purchase. The commission would charge the presidential panel the maximum $12,500 allowed under agency rules.

However, the commission says state law doesn’t permit it to release birthdates, driver license numbers or Social Security numbers except to police or other state agencies and the presidential panel doesn’t qualify as either one.

Here is the complete statement from the Wisconsin Elections Commission:

“By law, most of the information in Wisconsin’s voter registration system is public and is available for purchase, and is commonly purchased by political parties, candidates, researchers and other organizations. A voter’s name, address and voting history are public, and this information has already been provided to campaigns and other requestors who have paid for it. Wisconsin does not collect any information about a voter’s political preference or gender.

“Wisconsin statutes do not permit the state to release a voter’s date of birth, driver license number or Social Security number. State statutes permit the WEC to share confidential information in limited circumstances with law enforcement agencies or agencies of other states. The Presidential Commission does not appear to qualify under either of these categories.

“The WEC does not have the discretion to deny a request for the public information in the voter registration database if the required fee is paid. By administrative rule, the price is $12,500 for the entire statewide voter file, and Wisconsin law does not contain any provision for waiving the fee for voter data.”