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Rauner’s appointees kept Illinois in Crosscheck

Tuesday, Nov 21, 2017

* Back in 2015, Gov. Rauner made some GOP appointments to the Illinois State Board of Elections: Madison County Republican Party Chairman Andy Carruthers and New Trier Republican Party supporter William Cadigan. In March of 2017, Rauner appointed former Illinois Republican Party staffer Ian Linnabary and Winnetka resident Kate O’Brien to the board.

Now, check out the roll call on the ISBE motion yesterday to leave the highly controversial Crosscheck program…



* Tribune

William McGuffage, a Democrat from Chicago who has served on the board for 18 years, called Crosscheck “suspect for a lot of reasons.” He contended there was a “symbiotic relationship” between Kobach’s role in Kansas overseeing the multistate database and his role on “what I called the bogus Trump commission.”

Republican Board Chairman William Cadigan of Winnetka called it “a shame that this whole issue of voting list maintenance has gotten entangled” with Washington politics. But he said Illinois is required by federal law to have accurate voter registration lists and noted the state has received notice expressing concerns from the U.S. Department of Justice that could lead to litigation.

Republican board member Ian Linnabary of Rockford told board members he had spoken with Kansas election officials and had “good news” that a meeting of all member Crosscheck states about security concerns would be held within the next two weeks.

While Linnabary said that no board members feel “voter fraud is rampant,” he urged the panel to “take a step back” and not withdraw from Crosscheck while efforts are made to secure the system.

* Pritzker campaign…

Bruce Rauner’s handpicked members of the State Board of Elections voted yesterday to keep Illinois in the Crosscheck program, a key priority of Donald Trump in the “GOP’s stealth war against voters.”

While there’s no evidence of voter fraud in Illinois, the Trump administration is still pushing states to opt into the program that needlessly exposes personal information and could disenfranchise voters. Instead of standing up to protect Illinoisans, Rauner’s appointees sided with Donald Trump.

“All four members that Bruce Rauner appointed to the State Board of Elections chose fear over facts and stood firmly by Donald Trump’s side,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh. “Illinois needs a governor who will protect voting rights and stand up to Trump’s relentless attacks on this state.”

…Adding… Press release…

In response to the Illinois State Board of Elections’ decision to continue to participate in the discriminatory, deeply flawed Interstate Voter Registration Data Crosscheck Program (Crosscheck), U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement:

“No American voter should ever be improperly disenfranchised because of inaccurate information, which makes the decision by the Illinois State Board of Elections to continue its use of Kris Kobach’s secretive Crosscheck system so disheartening,” said Senators Duckworth and Durbin. “This system could purge as many as 300 legitimate voter registrations for each registration it eliminates—it has no place in our state or our nation’s electoral system. Illinois can and must withdraw from Crosscheck to restore the integrity of our state’s elections and ensure all eligible voters are able to exercise their fundamental Constitutional rights at the ballot box.”

Duckworth and Durbin wrote to IL SBE last month asking the board to stop using the program to help maintain the accuracy of its voter registration system and to instead participate in a far more precise alternative, the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) multistate partnership, which has resulted in higher voter registration rates and increased voter turnout.

…Adding More… Press release…

State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago 13th) and State Senator Bill Cunningham plan to introduce legislation ending Illinois’ participation in the controversial Interstate Crosscheck system.

Despite calls from state and national legislators to withdraw from the program, the State Board of Elections voted Monday to remain in the national voter registration database.

“If the Board of Elections will not act to protect Illinois voters, then it is our duty as legislators to do so,” Raoul said. “The right to vote is sacred, and citizens in our state should know that their information is secure when they cast their ballot.”

At a joint hearing of the House Elections Committee and the Senate Telecommunications and Information Technology Committee last week, legislators heard testimony on security concerns with the system.

Shawn Davis, a faculty member at the Illinois Institute of Technology Center for Cyber Security and Forensics Education testified that the Crosscheck system uses an unsecured network system. Most websites handling sensitive information use secure file transmission networks called SFTPs.

“The risk of exposing the personal information of millions of Illinois voters to an Equifax-style data breach is not worth the small benefit of remaining in the Crosscheck system,” Cunningham said. “This should not be a partisan issue — it is a data protection issue and it must be addressed immediately.”

Additionally, many voting rights activists say that Crosscheck is a vehicle for discrimination at the voting booth. This is because Crosscheck 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.

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: Crosscheck and the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). This legislation will remove Illinois from the Crosscheck system but allow the state to remain in ERIC, widely viewed as the better system.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

12 Comments
  1. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 1:36 pm:

    Rauner suffers from Kansas envy.


  2. - Telly - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 1:43 pm:

    All arguments about partisan voter suppression aside, Crosscheck is a joke from a data security standpoint. The board of elections is putting every registered voter in the state at risk for a Equifax-level security breach.


  3. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 1:45 pm:

    Plus we are also in ERIC. Why spend money on one data base when you can have two data bases?


  4. - Just Visiting - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 2:13 pm:

    In contrast, the Democrats on the board at ILSBE protected Frank Mautino from civil/criminal prosecution for his highly suspect campaign expenditures.


  5. - northsider(the original) - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 2:19 pm:

    ====Crosscheck is a joke from a data security standpoint. The board of elections is putting every registered voter in the state at risk for a Equifax-level security breach.====

    Transunion: “Hold my beer”

    (Member O’Brien’s state bio says she is a director of data giant Transunion)


  6. - ITK - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 2:33 pm:

    Last summer the City of Chicago Elections Board left 2 million voters info including SS and DL numbers unprotected and exposed on a flippin Amazon server. Where were all these people then to cry over that?
    Hypocrites.


  7. - Crosschecker - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 2:40 pm:

    Dem appointees are above reproach.

    Well except for John Keith, removed from a Circuit Court bench for abusive behavior.

    Oh, and Cassandra Watson, sanctioned by the ARDL for being inattentive to clients.


  8. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    ===Dem appointees are above reproach.===

    When did anyone say that? How about sticking to the topic at hand?


  9. - Dude Abides - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 3:15 pm:

    There are some folks posting on here trying to change the subject. Cadigan’s response warning of possible litigation from the Trump Administration’s Justice Department is laughable. Rauner and Trump stand together in efforts to suppress voter registration and put voter information at risk. The US does not have a problem with voter fraud. We know the real reason behind this.


  10. - Rutro - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 3:26 pm:

    There will be a time the dnc will encourage Illinois and east coaster snow birds to change their registration to Florida, it needs to be checked, but correctly.


  11. - titan - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 3:33 pm:

    It was stated in the meeting that Crosscheck will be upgrading security prior to any further transmittals of data from the member states.
    Presumably, continued participation could be reconsidered once the specifics of those upgrades are provided (and their adequacy weighed).

    Also noted in the meeting, ERIC does not include about 20 of the Crosscheck states. Indiana, Iowa, Missouri and Kentucky are among those in Crosscheck but not ERIC.


  12. - chad - Tuesday, Nov 21, 17 @ 4:18 pm:

    Not sure I see the problem here. The SBE has always been partisan on issues like this. We absolutely have some voter list problems in Illinois and this kind of program is helpful.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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