Super-PAC to Raise $10M for Strict Secretaries of State on Voting

Tuesday, 21 Jan 2014 07:29 PM

By Cynthia Fagen

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A new conservative super-PAC plans to raise $10 million to pour into election races for secretaries of state who favor proof of citizenship and other strict voting requirements, Politico reported Tuesday.

The group, SOS for SoS, will focus on nine states in 2014 that support what they call "smart voting," legislation that requires proof of citizenship and removes ineligible voters from voting rolls, among other reforms. Fundraising is already off to a strong start, spokesman Logan Churchwell said.

Key targeted states include Ohio, Colorado, Iowa, and Michigan.

SOS for SoS will also push the re-election of officials in charge of voter registrations, including Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Kobach has championed his state's proof-of-citizenship law to keep non-citizens from voting, particularly those who are in the U.S. illegally.

Critics say voter fraud is extremely rare and that such laws suppress the vote and threaten to keep thousands of citizens from casting ballots.

In most states, the secretary of state deals directly with election administration. Usually SoS races aren't as costly as those for governor, and an infusion of money could have a significant impact.

"The vast majority of Americans demand smart policies like voter identification and cooperative maintenance of election records. It's time they be presented with candidates who can deliver," said super-PAC head Gregg Phillips.

The PAC was formed in response to the establishment of the super-PAC SoS for Democrats.

"Election policy was recently elevated to the national discussion because people are unwilling to allow their voting process to become polluted with command-and-control political tactics," Phillips said.

Republicans hold 29 of the 50 secretary-of-state offices nationwide. Nine Democratic-held seats and 18 Republican-held seats are up for election in 2014.

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