By Tim Shelley, Heart of Illinois ABC
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (HOI) — The Illinois State Board of Elections voted 8-0 on Tuesday to remove Illinois from Crosscheck, a controversial multi-state anti-voter fraud program.
The program was started by Kansas, Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska in 2005, with the goal of cross-referencing voter rolls to identify duplicate voter registrations.
The program was spearheaded by former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who also served on President Donald Trump’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. The commission was later disbanded without issuing a report on voter fraud.
Illinois State Board of Elections spokesman Matt Dietrich said the main reason Illinois is withdrawing from the Kansas-administered Crosscheck is to create a new data sharing agreement with Indiana.
Dietrich said Indiana’s statute allowed them to enter into a data sharing agreement with Illinois in the event the Land of Lincoln withdrew from Crosscheck. Indiana officials said it would be easier legally and technically to coordinate the program if Illinois was not a Crosscheck member, Dietrich said.
The Illinois State Board of Elections was operating on the belief Crosscheck was dormant and likely to remain so, Dietrich said.
The General Assembly passed a bill in 2018 to remove the state from Crosscheck and enter a data sharing agreement with Indiana. That bill was vetoed by former Gov. Bruce Rauner, and legislators failed to override his veto.
Illinois, Wisconsin, Missouri and Iowa are all members of the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), which performs similar crosschecking of voter rolls in various states. Kentucky is also exploring joining the organization.