On Monday, election integrity watchdog Voter Reference Foundation (VRF) filed a lawsuit against New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver and Attorney General Hector Balderas to ensure the publication of the state’s voter rolls.
The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque with the First Amendment being front and center in the complaint about the group’s right to publish the voter rolls for taxpayers to view.
VRF claims Toulouse Oliver falsely claimed in public statements that the group illegally published New Mexico’s voter rolls. She has a past of refusing to release voting records, as she did in 2017 when they were requested by President Donald J. Trump.
“After VRF published the New Mexico voter roll in December, Oliver said it was illegal and referred the matter to Democratic Attorney General Hector Balderas for investigation and possible prosecution, according to a ProPublica article cited in the lawsuit,” Just The News reports.
“We are not going to be deterred by partisan election officials who believe the election records taxpayers pay for are their personal possessions,” said Doug Truax, Founder and President of Restoration Action, which started VRF. “The public has a right to see them and if they try to block us, we will assert that right in court.”
“The taxpayers of New Mexico pay for election administration, and they have an absolute right to view the records that are produced,” added Truax.
The lawsuit reads, “Because their First Amendment rights to use and disclose the voter data for purposes of encouraging voter participation and protecting election integrity are being chilled, Plaintiffs sue the Defendants in their official capacities to obtain a declaration that their conduct is lawful and to enjoin Defendants from enforcing any statute in violation of Plaintiffs’ rights.”