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Rauner vetoes anti-Crosscheck bill

Tuesday, Jul 17, 2018

* Veto message…

SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Bruce Rauner took action today on the following bill:

Bill No.: SB 2273
An Act Concerning Elections
Action: Veto
Note: Veto Message Below

Veto Message for SB 2273

July 17, 2018

To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois Senate,
100th General Assembly:

Today I veto Senate Bill 2273 from the 100th General Assembly, which would limit the State of Illinois to participation in a single, exclusive interstate voter registration program.

The right to vote is the bedrock of our society and system of government, and this administration has demonstrated a commitment to increasing access to the vote. Last year, I signed historic automatic voter registration legislation to remove barriers for eligible Illinois voters to exercise their rights and encourage robust participation in the democratic process. In pursuing this expansion of registration, I have also remained focused on ensuring the integrity of the electoral system and pursuing opportunities to identify and investigate potential voter fraud.

One major way that Illinois combats fraudulent voting is through participation in programs that allow cross-referencing voter information from various states to identify where individuals are and are not eligible to vote. This legislation would hinder that effort by prohibiting the State from utilizing any interstate voter registration program other than that provided by the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), except for limited opportunities to contract with our border states that do not use the ERIC program. This prohibition could result in inefficiencies and gaps in knowledge, as less than half of states currently participate in ERIC, many of which will not qualify for separate contractual data sharing agreements under this legislation.

There is no need to codify such a limitation in state law and hamstring Illinois’ efforts to combat voter fraud when other safeguards are available to ensure the security, reliability, and appropriate use of any data being shared.

The security of Illinoisans’ personal data is of utmost importance, but the law does not mandate that Illinois participate in any database or program other than ERIC. When other options are available, the State Board of Elections is best situated to determine the risks associated with a given data sharing program. Instead of legislating limitations on our options, we should empower and rely on the Board to determine what programs are appropriate for voting fraud identification in Illinois and to monitor those programs to ensure their transparent and accountable use.

Furthermore, voter registration data should never be used to curb the legitimate exercise of the right to vote. But completely prohibiting potential sources of information that could help identify fraud and abuse in our election system is the wrong solution. The law already protects against potential mistakes or misinterpretations of data that could risk an eligible voter’s participation in an election. Before a voter’s registration is removed from the rolls, election authorities are required to give notice under both state and federal law, which provides an opportunity to respond to and resolve disputed registration status. Beyond that, in the unlikely event that a voter’s registration is inappropriately cancelled, Illinois’ same day voter registration opportunities allow for voters to properly identify themselves and correct the error up to and including election day.

The importance of pursuing both access to legal voting and integrity of the system cannot be overstated, but structural protections are a more appropriate way for Illinois to continue balancing these priorities than blanket prohibitions on current and future options for mitigating fraud.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return Senate Bill 2273, entitled “AN ACT concerning elections,” with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.


Bruce Rauner

…Adding… Press release…

State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago 13th) criticized Gov. Bruce Rauner for vetoing legislation that would have ended Illinois’ participation in the controversial Crosscheck voter registration system.

“I can only suppose that the governor’s veto was politically motivated, as this piece of legislation is a sensible way to protect voter information,” Raoul said. “We have heard from numerous experts that the Crosscheck system is unsafe and that it can be used as a tool to discriminate and suppress voters. There is no reason to continue using this system when we have a better option readily available.”

The Illinois Board of Elections currently subscribes to two national voter database systems designed to help election authorities identify voters who may be registered in more than one state: the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program and the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). Raoul’s legislation, Senate Bill 2273, would have removed Illinois from the Crosscheck system but allowed the state to remain in ERIC, widely viewed as the better system.

Cyber security experts testified to a joint committee last year that the Crosscheck system has several security concerns that make private information easily accessible.

Additionally, many voting rights activists say that Crosscheck is a vehicle for discrimination at the voting booth. The system compares first and last names of state voter databases, ignoring middle names and designations like Jr. or Sr. This is viewed as problematic by experts because communities of color are more likely to share last names, making them easy targets for voter suppression.

“Illinois residents deserve a governor who will act in their best interest rather than blindly following a partisan agenda,” Raoul said. “Despite the governor’s actions today, I remain committed to my long record of fighting for voting rights in our state.”

* Another one…

Today the governor rejected legislation co-sponsored by State Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-Chicago) that would have ended Illinois’ participation in the deeply flawed and discriminatory Crosscheck system.

“Crosscheck threatens the rights of Illinoisans to participate in our democracy,” Collins said. “It has been used as a discriminatory tool to purge voter rolls in other states, a practice which we attempted to prevent here. I am disappointed that the governor chose to continue to use this faulty system that also puts all Illinois voters’ information at a cybersecurity risk.”

Senate Bill 2273, co-sponsored by Collins, would have discontinued Illinois’ involvement in the controversial Crosscheck system, which is used by election authorities to identify voters who may be registered in multiple states.

Crosscheck has been found to adversely affect voters with similar last names by disregarding middle names and designations like Jr. or Sr. and only comparing first and last names. Furthermore, Crosscheck takes inadequate measures to safeguard voters’ personal data from cybersecurity threats.

“Illinoisans should be able to participate in our democracy without fear of their personal identification being compromised,” Collins said. “I will continue to work to end Illinois’ participation in Crosscheck.”

* And another…

ov. Rauner took steps today to endanger Illinois voter’s personal information.

Rauner vetoed Senate Bill 2273 which would prohibit the Illinois State Board of Elections from sharing any voter information with the controversial Crosscheck system or any other interstate voter registration program other than the mandated Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC).

State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) is outraged that the governor supports storing sensitive voter registration information unnecessarily on insecure servers.

“Elections empower residents to take an active role in the democratic process. Illinois’ citizens should be able to register to vote without fear that their personal information may be susceptible to hackers,” Cullerton said.

Illinois currently participates in two multistate voter registration sharing programs: Crosscheck and ERIC.

State elections officials say the ERIC system provides more reliable information and greater security for personal information than Crosscheck.

Crosscheck is managed by Kansas’ Secretary of State Kris Kobach, and according to researchers at Harvard and Stanford, the program compares data that is insufficient to produce dependable results.

Astoundingly, researchers found Crosscheck was 99 percent more likely to purge legitimate voter from the rolls as opposed to illegitimate ones. The system is also a glaring security risk, as it uses minimal IT security and its operators have demonstrated a disregard for basic cybersecurity protocol, leading to the personal information of Illinois of voters vulnerable to hacking, tampering and manipulation.

The data is stored on a standard server in Arkansas, which the state admits is insecure.

Illinois’ election board’s 2016 election hacking was referenced in the indictment of 12 Russian hackers which resulted in the theft of the information of approximately 500,000 voters.

State Board of Elections officials testified during legislative hearings that hackers took voters’ names, addresses, birth dates and, in some cases, their driver’s license numbers and the last four digits of their Social Security numbers.

“Gov. Rauner needs to learn from the lessons of the past. It’s his duty to ensure Illinois’ residents have faith in our state’s electoral process,” Cullerton said. “Once again, Gov. Rauner is not willing to consider commonsense solutions to protect Illinois’ citizens.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:33 pm:

    He seems more worried about voter fraud, which doesn’t exist on a wide scale, than the threat of another cyber attack, which we know happened when Illinois’ system was penetrated.

    You’d think our state elections officials would want to make it harder to penetrate election systems, wouldn’t you?

  2. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:33 pm:

    I smell an override.

  3. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:34 pm:

    47th, you should probably get your nose checked out.

  4. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:40 pm:

    Maybe, but Kobach is going to lead a bunch of Republicans down a dark, one lane road, from which there is no turning back. I have a small hope that enough ILGOPs see the light before it’s too late.

  5. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:43 pm:

  6. - Roman - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:55 pm:

    I smell another J.B. ad that ties Rauner to Trump — with Russian hackers this time instead of caged immigrant children.

  7. - NorthsideNoMore - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 4:58 pm:

    Mission accomplished …he got outmanuvered on this

  8. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 5:03 pm:

    Bruce wouldn’t do this if it could lose him the election.

    It’s a voter nothing-burger.

  9. - Rabid - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 5:08 pm:

    Worried more about voter fraud, than Russian hackers

  10. - Roman - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 5:37 pm:

    Notice how the veto wasn’t announced during the traditional late Friday news dump cycle last week? Would have been too close to the Russian hacker indictment.

  11. - Saluki - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 5:42 pm:


  12. - getafteritguy - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:05 pm:

    Basically Rauner came out as pro-voter suppression today and aligned himself with Trump, conspiracy peddlers, and partisan power mongers looking to take away the right to vote from anyone who doesn’t agree with them.

  13. - getafteritguy - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:08 pm:

    With this veto, Rauner is saying that he doesn’t care if the entire voter roll for the state of Illinois, including SS numbers, names and address is hacked by Russian agents. Just as long as those people who don’t look like him lose their right to vote.

  14. - Flat Bed Ford - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:09 pm:

    Rauner actually came out as a guy who thinks illegal voters are a bigger threat than Russian hackers. He, and it sorta pains me to say this, is correct.

  15. - Amalia - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:24 pm:

    Republicans are fast becoming the fraud party.

  16. - Collinsville Kevin - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:26 pm:

    Hey flat bed, I don’t think either is a threat. Crosscheck stinks though.

  17. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 6:29 pm:

    FBF, do you have any evidence to suggest illegal voting has happened? Because Kobach put his best people on it and they found about 11 illegal votes cast out of 1.8 million. And most of those were innnocent mistakes, not attempts to swinging elections. Try reading the link I posted above.

    Facts still exist whether some of us choose to believe in them or not.

  18. - Just Me - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 7:17 pm:

    If the language of the legislation prohibited all cross-checking programs than it was written for the purpose of getting outraged when Rauner vetoed it.

    I’d also like to point out to my Democratic friends that the Chicago ID card, which was created specifically to help non-citizens get access to government services, is now acceptable identification to register to vote.

  19. - Anon - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 7:34 pm:

    Crosscheck=Koch Brothers

  20. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 7:35 pm:

    ==Bruce wouldn’t do this if it could lose him the election.

    No, but the AVR bill he referenced in the release might lose it for him. Not being registered beforehand is a big reason for young folks not bothering to show up come election time.

  21. - Northsider (the original) - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 8:00 pm:

    Did he invest in Crosscheck, too?

  22. - Bucky - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 8:44 pm:

    No, but he probably rigged the primary election in DuPage County somehow.

  23. - Gifford - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 9:26 pm:

    No voter registration record from Illinois was ever hacked as a result of the states participation in Crosscheck.
    It was Democrats who initially put Illinois in Crosscheck.
    Th City of Chicago Board of Elections left millions of voter registration records unprotected on a Amazon server and not one Democrat politician said a word about that.
    Raoul was the Dem Senate member who drew the hyper partisan legislative map.
    It’s all manufactured outrage.

  24. - Mama - Tuesday, Jul 17, 18 @ 10:33 pm:

    Gifford, you are wrong - voter registration records from Illinois was hacked.

  25. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 6:29 am:

    Just on a whim I went to white pages and typed in “Rich Miller, Illinois”. I got 670 results. Crosscheck won’t differentiate by middle name or suffix? Why?
    And why should we buy a junk product?

  26. - getafteritguy - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:15 am:

    There are numerous reasons for Illinois to get out of Crosscheck such such as it being over 99 percent inaccurate, it has been weaponized as a tool to disenfranchise voters in numerous states, but the biggest reason is that utilizes security standards vulnerable to the most novice of hackers and holds nearly 100 million registrations (8 million from Illinois) at one set time. That’s called a Thanksgiving Turkey of voter data for a Russian operative.

  27. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:20 am:

    By vetoing this bill, Rauner is aligning himself with the Trump lie, the Kobach crazy, and Russians. This is arguably the most undemocratic, anti-American, unpatriotic veto of his administration. Are you a veteran? if so, you have defended the right for every eligible American to vote. The keystone of a democracy is the vote. If you are manipulating the vote or providing access to those who would manipulate it, you are complicit in forwarding a movement toward autocracy. Yesterday Rauner spit in the face who defend our democracy. Wake up and do the work to stop it.

  28. - getafteritguy - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:22 am:

    Remember and repeat it to everyone who you meet 500,000 Illinois voter registration, including SS number, Drivers license, names and addresses, were stolen on Rauners watch and he doesn’t care. On the contrary, with this veto he seems to be OK with it.

  29. - The Dude Abides - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:28 am:

    If Pritzker wins I look for Illinois to pull out of crosscheck next year.

  30. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:47 am:

    We’re already working on re-writing the legislation.

  31. - Uncle Ernie - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:48 am:

    Isn’t this how Republicans have always operated, suppress voters somehow so they can win. Since IL was just hacked by the Ruskies you would think our Governor would want to do anything possible to protect our system, but NO. Not if it could allow more legal voters to vote more easily and get more people to the polls. No R wants that!

  32. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 8:55 am:

    Illinois shouldn’t be playing ball with a malignant grifter like Kobach.

  33. - Cheesy Checkers - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 9:21 am:

    Can you tell me what “we’re” going to do do in response to the Dems at City of Chicago Elections leaving millions of voter registrations unprotected on an Amazon server?
    Or what about not being able to access Indiana voter data since they only participate in Crosscheck?

  34. - Stark - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 9:46 am:

    Amalia - They’re not becoming the fraud party - they already are the fraud party. When you lose the popular vote in 6 out of the last 7 presidential elections that’s the only way they can win.

  35. - TinyDancer(FKASue) - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 10:10 am:

    Here’s the problem….
    Voting machine makers are more concerned about their bottom line than about making sure the vote is secure and the election is legitimate:

  36. - Try-4-Truth - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 10:14 am:

    ==== The right to vote is the bedrock of our society and system of government, ======

    Crosscheck harms people’s right to vote. Gov. Rauner has proven, once again, that he doesn’t care about the people of Illinois.

  37. - Mike K - Wednesday, Jul 18, 18 @ 10:20 am:

    Cheesy, the bill he vetoed explicitly allowed for Illinois to exchange voter information with border states.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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